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Early india[1]


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Early india[1]

  1. 1. Indus River Valley• Cities of Harappa, Mohenjo-Daro –Walled –Square grid pattern –Indoor plumbing –Writing still a mystery• The Slow Demise - c. 1150 B.C.E. –Causes unclear –Floods –Fertile areas drier
  2. 2. The Aryans• Indo-European pastorialists invade• Dominated by warriors• Patriarchal – brides bring dowries• Bring caste system• Begin to farm along Ganges• Oral literature –The Vedas –Religious hymns –Polytheistic
  3. 3. Social Change• The Caste System –Varnas, categories; based on pollution  Brahmins (mediators, literate, tax-exempt)  Warriors  Merchants  Peasants  Artisans  Untouchables –Status (dharma) determined by birth –Transmigration of souls  Karma
  4. 4. Rise of Buddhism• The Making of a Philosophy –Buddha (Siddartha Gautama) - 6th century B.C.E.  Wandering life, asceticism –Four Noble Truths –Escape suffering by renouncing worldly things  Achievement of nirvana –Denies Vedas as scripture –Critique of caste system –Some worship Buddha as god –Dissension  Good works v. contemplative life
  5. 5. The Spread of Buddhism• Buddhism is monastic – monks (male and female), monasteries, missionaries
  6. 6. The Greek Interlude• Alexander the Great, 327 B.C.E.• Contact between India and Hellenistic world improves –Greek mathematics and astronomy –Indian religious ideas
  7. 7. The Mauryas• Mauryan Empire –Alexander retreats –Chandragupta Maurya - founder  Monarch with centralized control  Successors extend empire• Ashoka’s Conversion to Buddhism  Grandson of Chandragupta  Conversion to Buddhism  Opposed by Brahmins  Sends missionaries to China and SE Asia
  8. 8. India at the Time of Ashoka
  9. 9. The Mauryas• Imperial Patronage and Social Change –Merchants, artisans benefit –Womens status improves –Monasteries spread – builds Stupas –Ashoka’s Death  Successors less competent  Division follows  By 185 B.C.E., empire ended
  10. 10. Brahmin Recovery–Buddhism  Loses popular appeal  As trade declines, so does Buddhism–Hinduism  Shiva, Vishnu, Kali, Lakshmi dominate  More temples  More participation: all castes, women somewhat  Adopts Buddhist aspects  Brahmins appeal to elites
  11. 11. The Gupta Empire• Gupta family –By 4th century , build empire C.E. –Less centralized – regional autonomy –Brahmins restored as royal supporters• Literature and the Sciences –Kalidasa - poet –Mathematics - 0, decimals, "Arabic" number system –Medicine - Hospitals, surgery
  12. 12. The Gupta Empire
  13. 13. Intensifying Caste and Gender Iniquities• Distinctions more rigid• Status of women reduced –No longer allowed to read the Vedas –Few legal rights –Female infanticide –More freedom for low caste women –sati
  14. 14. Intensifying Caste and Gender Iniquities• Gupta Decline –Hun invasions, 400s C.E. –Local rulers profit  Fragmentation