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This book discusses the period from 1000 BC to the end of the sixth century AD. Divided into five thematic sections, the first section discusses questions like perceptions, historical consciousness, and approaches to the study of ancient Indian history. The second and third parts give adetailed account of changes in society and economy and the evolution and transformation of the political formations from ancient times. The segment on religion presents information on development in the field of religion and philosophy while the last section underlines changes which paved way fornew socio-economic and political formations. The new Introduction updates research on the subject and explains the various themes discussed in the volume. This book is an important reading for teachers, students, and scholars of ancient Indian history.
Romila Thapar is Professor Emeritus at the Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. She also holds the Kluge Chair in Countries and Cultures of the South at the Library of Congress, and is Professorial Fellow at the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, New Delhi. An Honorary Fellow of Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford, she has been Distinguished Visiting Professor at Cornell University.
Table of Contents
Introduction SECTION I: HISTORIOGRAPHY: 1. Decolonising the Past 2. Society and Historical Consciousness 3. The Contribution of D.D. Kosambi to Indology SECTION II: ECONOMY AND SOCIETY: 4. Society in Ancient India 5. Lineage Society 6. The Evolution of the State in the Ganga Valley 7. Black Gold: South Asia and the Roman Maritime Trade SECTION III: CHANGING POLITICAL FORMATIONS: 8. The Mauryan Empire in Early India 9. Society and Economic Activity 10. Text and Context: Megasthenes and the Seven Castes 11. Asoka: A Retrospective SECTION IV: RELIGION, PHILOSOPHY AND SOCIETY: 12. Ideology. Society and the Upanisads 13. The Householder and the Renouncer 14. Patronage and the Community SECTION V: TOWARDS FURTHER CHANGE: 15. Inscriptions as Historical Writing in Early India, 3rd BC to 6th AD 16. Threshold Times Index