HIS 3170 Themes of Indian History

Course Description:
This course is designed to give students a broader understanding of the historical development of the Indian subcontinent from early stages of the state formation. This will allow students to grasp the historical nexus between India and Sri Lanka from its pre- colonial past to the modern age. The course introduces major themes of Indian history from the emergence of early social formations, in the first millennium, to the Nationalist movement of the twentieth century.

The main objective of this course is to provide a basic understanding of the historical development of the Indian sub continent from the emergence Gangetic society in the first millennium BCE to the Nationalist movement of the twentieth century. It will also provide student with an understanding of the major continuities and discontinuities of this long historical process. In addition, the course also intends to provide the students with the necessary historical and conceptual understanding that will help locate the historical development of Sri Lanka in a larger South Asian context.

Learning outcomes:
At the end of this course, students should be able to:
• Understand major characteristics of the historical evolution of the Indian sub continent;
• Identify and analyze major continuities and discontinuities of Indian History.
• Apply the knowledge gain through this course for a contextual understanding of Sri Lankan history.

Course content:
1. The emergence of Gangetic society
2. Urbanisation, emergence of state and exclusions
3. Social and cultural life in the first millennium BCE
4. Rise and fall of empires
5. Post-empire disintegration of politics
6. Historical emergence of “South India”
7. Consolidation of Muslim powers and ‘Islamization’
8. Society politics and culture in the subcontinent in the 16th century
9. Early European contacts
10. Consolidation of the British Rule
11. Emergence of Nationalism
12. Partition and post independence politics

Attendance 10%
Midterm Test or Assignment 30%
Final Exam 60%

Recommended Readings:
.Bardhan, P. (1999) The Political Economy of Development in India, Delhi : Oxford University Press.
Chatterjee, P. (1998) Possible India, Delhi: Oxford University Press.
Chatterjee, P. (1999) The Partha Chatterjee Omnibus, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Cohn, B.S. (2004) The Bernard Cohn Omnibus, Delhi: Oxford University Press.
Deshpande, S. (2003) Indian Society, UK: Penguin.
Keay, J. (2001) India: A History, NY: Grove Press.
McLeod, J. (2002) The History of India: The Greenwood Histories of the Modern Nations, Westport, Connecticut/London Greenwood Press.
Dowson, J. (1956) The History of India As Told By Its Own Historians: The Muhammadan Period ( The Posthumous Papers of the late Sir H. M. Elliot, Calcutta: Susil Gupta (India) LTD .
Thapar, R. (1996) Time As A Metaphor Of History: Early India, Oxford : Oxford University Press.
Thapar, R. (2004) Early India: From The Origins To AD 1300, California: University Of California Press.

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