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Essays in Indian Protohistory

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Item Code: AZE495
Author: D. P. Agrawal, Dilip K. Chakrabarti
Language: ENGLISH
Edition: 2021
ISBN: 9789350500385
Pages: 402 (Throughout B/w Illustrations)
Other Details 10.00x7.50
Weight 820 gm
Book Description
About the Book
The essays in the present volume deal with Indian prehistory from the beginning of food-production to the use of iron. They do not deal with all the major issues and problems, but they may be said to significantly represent the research interests and current thoughts related to this period. They are detailed in scope and representative of the state of research in late Indian prehistory or protohistory.

It has been emphasized earlier that the essays in the present volume should be judged in the context of the general nature of archaeological research in India. But whatever may be said about their quality, there is no point in denying that the study of Indian protohistory has considerably broadened its range of interest in recent years. The present volume has only tried to convey an impression of this widening of interest.

About the Authors
Professor Dharam Pal Agrawal (Ph.D Banaras Hindu University) heads the multi disciplinary archaeology group at the Physical Research Laboratory, Ahmadabad. He is a pioneer in the fields of radiocarbon and other dating techniques, metallographic analysis of ancient metal artifacts and geomorphologic studies of prehistoric contexts in India. His major publications include The Copper Bronze Age in India (Delhi 1971), Prehistoric Chronology and Radiocarbon Dating in India (with Sheela Kusumgar, Delhi, 1974), Radiocarbon and Indian Archaeology (coeditor with A. Ghosh, Bombay, 1973) and Ecology and Archaeology of Western India (coeditor with B.M. Pande, Delhi, 1977). He has published widely in national and international journals and lectured in various universities in India and abroad.

Dr. Dilip K. Chakrabarti has researched on early Urban growth in India, early Indian iron, India and West Asia before the Achaemenids and history of ideas in Indian archaeology. On these and related topics he has published widely in national and international journals. He was educated at the University of Calcutta where he abtained his M.A. (with a gold medal) and Ph.D. In 1973-74 he was at Churchill College. Cambridge. In 1974-75 he was at the institute for Advance Studies in the Humanities, Edinburgh University, and the British Institute of Persian Studies, Tehran. In 1975-76 he was at Wolfson College, Cambridge, and thaught Indian archaeology and ancient history at the University. In 1976 he visited various Universities and museums in the United States and elsewhere as a grantee of the JDR 3" Fund, New York.

THE ESSAYS in the present volume deal with Indian prehistory from the beginning of food-production to the use of iron. They do not deal with all the major issues and problems involved, but they may be said to significantly represent the research interests and current thoughts related to this period. No other volume of this kind has been published in Indian archaeology since Indian Prehistory: 1964 (edited by V.N. Misra and MS. Mate) which was published by the Deccan College. Poona, in 1965. Limited only to the later part of Indian prehistory and published more than a decade later, this volume is obviously more detailed in scope and more representative of the state of research in late Indian prehistory or protohistory.

The papers in the volume are, of course, conditioned by the general leval of archeological research in India. The limitations of this research and the historical factors behind the present state of Indian archaeology will be separately discussed at the end of this volume Here we may focus on the trends which have become clear in recent years The first of these trends is in the area of natural-scientific analyses. The establishment of a radiocarbon laboratory in the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Bombay (this laboratory has now been shifted to the Physical Research Laboratory. Ahmadabad) was a major step in this direction. One would say that there has been a quiet revolution in Indian prehistoric and protohistoric chronology because of the work of this laboratory. Plans are afoot to initiate other dating methods as well. Secondly, a number of workers have now concentrated on the problems of early Indian metallurgy and whatever data are available have provided fresh insights into the general issue. Thirdly, there is an increasing concern with the ecological background of early cultures. This is an area where multi disciplinary research is yielding positive results, notably in Maharashtra, Gujarat and Rajasthan. Fourthly, the analysis of ancient plant remains and the study of ancient animal remains have made significant progress. These are perhaps the major aspects of natural-scientific analyses in Indian archaeology but there are other developing aspects too, and one may not be far wrong in claiming that natural-scientific studies in Indian archaeology have already developed beyond the first, tentative stage.

The second major development lies in the field of basic archaeological research itself. First, there have been many significant discoveries in recent years, and whatever may be said about the quality of analyses and the level of interpretation of these discoveries, the number of discoveries should be considered having a significance of its own. Secondly, the number of good monographs, either on a specific region or on a general theme, is gradually increasing, and it is not uncommon to find attempts at systematization on various levels. The third major development is in the area of historical interpretations. The diffusionary assumptions are increasingly being challenged and alternative explanations are being put forward in their place.

**Contents and Sample Pages**

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