- Paperback: 387 pages
- Publisher: Oxford; Edition edition (20 October 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9780195687859
- ISBN-13: 978-0195687859
- ASIN: 019568785X
- Product Dimensions: 21.1 x 2.5 x 13.7 cm
- Customer Reviews: 1,007 customer ratings
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #152 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
India's Ancient Past Paperback – 20 Oct 2006
About the Author
About the Author: The author of India's Ancient Past, R. S. Sharma, was an eminent historian, who taught at Patna University, University of Toronto and Delhi University as well. He was able to publish 115 books, throughout his life, which were translated into fifteen languages. He was the Head of Departments of History at Delhi and Patna Universities and was also the Chairman of the Indian Council of Historical Research. He was considered to be a master of epigraphy, literary texts and archaeological texts, which made his writing interesting and enlightening.
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2. It's a great book, Easy read. Language isn't complicated while still engaging the reader.
3. There are certain perspectives/aspects which one might have to get from other books to add to the information from this book but nevertheless, it's holistic.
Sale price: 182/-
This book is highly recommended for study of ancient India. I had gone through new NCERTs of 12th and 6th, but they didn't cover many aspects of ancient India like, economy, art and political organization. The NCERT just brush through the topics which is insufficient with respect to Mains preparation.
This book has maps of different period like, harappa, maurya, gupta so provides a decent idea of places.
Also after each chapter it has chronology of events which is the best part!
Must buy for holistic understanding of ancient India.
Sharma starts off by laying out his vision of ancient India, which are mostly rehashing of Western propaganda used to rationalize the atrocities of colonization and oppression. On occasion he tries to hide this propaganda by giving it an Indian flavour and mixing it in with Indian culture. For instance he looks to justify his Marxist rationale to divide Indian people and deny/erase several millennia of long-standing culture by distorting ancient texts and giving it a warped interpretation. He also creates several theories of false equivalency among religions of Christianity + Islam, both of which were born in a violent atmosphere and used violence as an instrument to conquer and enslave other cultures, and draws parallels with certain Indian rulers. Throughout the book Sharma uses the formulaic approach of "blaming Brahmins" and other "upper castes"; no different from the racist tropes peddled by his fellow Marxist comrades and tries to convey to the reader an idea that perhaps the barbaric violence inflicted by the line of Taimur, Khilji and their line of Mughal invaders wasn't so bad for an already "backward" society. Please avoid this book.
Far more objective accounts of history have been documented by: Meenakshi Jain, Sita Ram Goel, Koenraad Elst, KK Mohammed, KM Munshi, Ram Swarup among others. Perhaps the most informative one is by RC Majumdar.