WAR AND PEACE : THE MAKING OF INDIA'S POLITY aaaa
       
     
     
 

 
     
     
     
     
     
     
       
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  Heat and Dust, Pageantry and Rituals, Battles and Bullocks, Mercenaries and Monks,  
  Courts and Temples, Mosques and Markets, Spices and Sounds, Turbans and Hats,  
  Sovereigns and Subjects The list can go on.  
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  Familiar, persistent and enduring images that immediately rise  
  when we seek to discover India study her history or make sense  
home   of her unique energy.  
prologue        
welcome   Images that speak of a rich and layered past and carry emotive,  
contents   spontaneous associations.  
subject moderators        
history   Images that we shall see are part and products of a 5000- year-old history. A history  
sexuality   that has seen the rise and fall of dynasties, the formation and mutation of  
social landscapes   communities,  the building and dismantling of structures, the articulation and  
art   interrogation of ideologies.  
dance        
literature   This page intends to explore these rich seams of history that went on to make up the  
music   material fabric of India's civilization. From tribe to chieftainship to small states to  
cinema   monarchy, to empire and to a nation state is a saga that reveals not one layer but  
environment   many, that unfolds the play of many Indias and yet one India.  
economics        
pot pourri   We hope to capture some of these moments in time as India's political landscape was  
feedback   formed and reformed.  
         

  What is the best way to do this history?  
  A singletrack chart or a multi track one?  
       
  Using a time line series as a reference back up, we will explore key themes that are  
  easily identifiable as the building blocks of India's political identity.  
         
    Wars and battles, rulers and dynasties gave the subcontinent a variety of  
    institutions and ideas that combined to produce a very distinctive political  
    landscape, social institutions and a defining ideology.  
         
   

 
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
         

 
  Our story shall be built around these threads, each intermeshed with the other to create a
  fabric of rich and complex hues. We begin with the Great War - the battle of Kurukshetra
  the 18-day battle that not merely epitomized contemporary political tendencies but
  sounded the clarion call for an identity polity of the future. The war rounded off one stage
  in the advance of the Indo Aryan tribes in India. It celebrated the triumph of monarchy
  and set the stage for the fuller delineation of Brahmanical civilization in the subcontinent.
  It would be followed by many more wars and by long interludes of peace and stability, in
  the course of which ideas and institutions would evolve and reconfigure to create a dynamic
  and distinctive civilization. Invasions and battles were not always sharp disjunctures;
  processes of accommodation and cultural fusion commonly followed these, by the appearance
  of new ideas and institutions.
 
   
   
   
   
   
     
     
     
     
     
         

  Around the 7th century, India, as an organic territorial entity was a reality - by now,  
  India was conceived both by the people of the subcontinent and by foreign visitors,  
  notably the Chinese, as extending from the Himalayas to the southern tip of the  
  landmass. By this time, a single complex system of political, ideological, economic  
  and cultural relations and institutions prevailed over the whole subcontinent. The  
  centuries thereafter, saw the fading away of the classical pattern and its replacement  
  by regionalism with all its vitality until the advent of Islam.  
       
  Armed with a young and egalitarian ideology, bands of Muslim warriors from Central  
  Asia made their way into India, set up their rule, constructed a new and more  
  centralized state structure and created conditions for an Indo Islamic culture, with all  
  its ambiguity and creativity. The formation of the Delhi Sultanate paved the way for  
  greater accommodation under the Mughals. It was now that the idea of a centralized  
  proto modern state was partially achieved as the Mughal Empire sprawled over  
  virtually the entire subcontinent at the time of its greatest power; and enjoyed the  
    acquiesence - at least for a while - of the majority of its subjects. It was in the  
    aftermath of Mughal decline and its replacement by the rule of the English East India  
    Company, and then the Crown, that the critical break occurred; even as the  
    subcontinent was ushered into the modern period of her history.  
       
   

Love, Lakshmi

 
                      
   
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