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Society in Ancient India

Evolution Since the Vedic Times Based on Sanskrit, Pali, Prakrit and Other Classical Sources

It is a fascinating, meticulously documented study unveiling, for the first time, the ancient Indian society in all its variegated evolutionary expressions across about two-and-a-half millennia: since the Vedic times (c. ....read below

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About This Book

It is a fascinating, meticulously documented study unveiling, for the first time, the ancient Indian society in all its variegated evolutionary expressions across about two-and-a-half millennia: since the Vedic times (c. 1500 BC) -- with a beautifully well-knit account of its religions and cultic practices; economic paradigms; polity and statecraft; educational set-up; customes, manners, etiquettes; food habits, drinks, dress styles; sports, pastimes, modes of recreations; sex life and sexual morality; casteist hierarchies; attitude towards women; and its crimes, punishments and legal codes.

Epitomising a lifetime of Dr. Banerji's research on ancient India, the book vividly captures all different articulations of sociological import from a whole body of traditional writings: both sacred and secular. Again, it turns out to be the first ever study to singly explore the sociological orientations of the Vedic Samhitas, Brahmanas, Upanishads, Kalpasutras, Vyakaranas, Puranas, Smritishastras, Tantric texts, the Ramayana, the Mahabharata, Kautilya's Arthashastra, and many other Sanskrit classics -- besides Buddhist and Jaina works in Pali, Prakrit and Apabhramsha languages.

With highly informative appendices, extensive bibliographic references and a glossary of technical/unfamiliar words, the book holds out enduring appeal to both scholars and discerning readers.

  • Binding: : Hardbound
  • 13 Digit ISBN : 9788124600795
  • 10 Digit ISBN : 8124600791
  • Edition : 3rd Impression
  • Year : 2007
  • Pages : 423 p.
  • Size : 23
  • Weight (approx.) : 700
  • Bibliographic Details : Appendices; Glossary; Index; Bibliography

Preface
Abbreviations

1. Introduction

Sanskrit Literature
A General Survey
Middle Indo-Aryan Literature
Poetical Works
Prose and Campu
Drama
Philosophy and Rules of Conduct of the Jainas
Grammar and Lexicon
Jaina Prabandha
Spiritual and Mystic Works
Jaina Didactic Poetry
Bauddha Doha
Lyric
Miscellaneous
Indian Society -- Its Antiquity and Characteristics
Indus Valley Civilisation
Vedic Civilisation
Buddhism and Jainism
Atheism
Philosophical Schools
Upanishads
Epic Soiety
Puranic Society
Dharmashastra and Arthashastra
Society Reflected in Clasical Sanskrit Literature
Elements of Indian Population

2. Popular Beliefs and Practices

The Vedic Age
Age of Brahmanas
Kalpasutras
Panini and Patanjali
Age of Popular Epics
Puranic Age
Smritishastra
Tula or Dhata (Balance)
Agni (Fire)
Udaka (Water)
Visha (Poison)
Kosha
Tandula (Rice)
Taptamasha (Heated Gold)
Phala (Ploughshare)
Dharma
Kautiliya Arthashastra
Classical Sanskrit Literature
Malatimadhava
Kathasaritsagara
Middle Indo-Aryan Literature

3. Popular Cults and Creeds

Vedic Age
Age of Brahmanas
Kalpasutras
Panini and Patanjali
The Age of Popular Epics
Puranic Age
Kautiliya Arthashastra
Smritishastra
Classical Sanskrit Literature
Malatimadhaba
Mricchakatika
Kathasaritsagara
Krishna Cult
Middle Indo-Aryan

4. Ideas, Manners and Customs

The Vedic Age
Age of Brahmanas
Kalpasutras
Panini and Patanjali
Age of Popular Epics
Middle Indo-Aryan Literature

5. Food, Drink, Dress and Decoration

The Vedic Age
Age of Brahmanas
Kalpasutras
Panini and Patanjali
Age of the Popular Epics
Puranic Age
Kautilya Arthashastra
Smritishastra
Classical Sanskrit Literature
Middle Indo-Aryan Literature

6. Sports, Pastimes and Entertainments

The Vedic Age
Age of Brahmanas
Kalpasutras
Panini and Patanjali
Age of Popular Epics
Puranic Age
Kautiliya Arthashastra
Classical Sanskrit Literature
Kadambari
Kathasaritsagara
Middle Indo-Aryan Literature

7. Sex-Life and Morality

Vedic Age
Age of Brahmanas
Kalpasutras
Panini And Patanjali
Age of Popular Epics
Puranic Age
Smritishastra
Kautilya's Arthashastra
Erotic Science
Kamasutra of Vatsyayana
Classical Sanskrit Works
Kathasritsagara
Prostitution
Middle Indo-Aryan Literature

8. Position of Shudras and Other Low-Class People

Vedic Age
Age of Brahmanas
Kalpasutras
Panini and Patanjali
Age of Popular Epics
Puranic Age
Smriti Literature
Kautiliya Arthashastra
Classical Sanskrit Literature
Kadambari
Kathasaritsagara
Middle Indo-Aryan Literature

9. Position of Women

Vedic Age
Age of Popular Epics
Smritishastra
Puranic Age
Tantric Works
Middle Indo-Aryan Literature

10. Education
11. Economic Life

Vedic Age
Age of Brahmanas
Kalpasutras
Panini and Patanjali
Age of Popular Epics
Puranic Age
Smritishastra
Kautilya Arthashastra
Sahityadarpana
Classical Sanskrit Literature
Kathasaritsagara
Revenue
Sources of Revenue
Principle of Taxation
Enhancement of Tax, Emergency, Famine
Considerations Before Levying Tax
Labour in Lieu of Tax
Rates of Taxes
Exemptions
Arthashastra and Shukraniti
Classical Sanskrit Literature
Treasure-Trove
Fines
Monopoly
State Trading
Shulka
Labour
Works in Middle Indo-Aryan Languages
Land -- Different Classes, Distribution and Ownership
Forests

12. Politics and Statecraft

Origin of Kingship
Cubs on the King?s Powers
Democratic Elements
Ministers
Taxation
Espionage
Inter-State Relations
Political Expedients
Rural Administration
Conventional Morality vs. Expediency
Literary Records

13. Crimes, Vices and Punishments

Vedic Age
Age of Brahmanas
Kalpasutras
Panini and Patanjali
Age of the Epics
Puranic Age
Smritishastra
Arising from Anger
Kautiliya Arthashastra
Classical Sansrit Literature
Kathasaritsagara
Theft
Prison and Prisoner
Police System
Middle Indo-Aryan Literature

14. Legal System

Titles of Law
Procedural Law
General Principles
Adverse Possession
Modes of Acquisition
Witness
Mortgage
Crimes
Punishable Suicide
Permitted Suicide
Post-Mortem Examination
Punishment
Death Penalty
Concession in Punishment
Discriminatory Punishment
Exemptions from Punishment

15. Society as Reflected in Tantra
16. Folk Elements and Social Miscellany

Sanskrit Works
Arts and Crafts
Gambling
Rural Life and Landscapes
Adverse Possession
Slavery
Infanticide
Architecture
Middle Indo Aryan Literature

Appendix I: Chronology of the Principal Works Consulted
Appendix II: Popular Elements in Similes
Appendix III: Folk-Elements in Grammatical Illustrations
Appendix IV: Folk-Elements in the Upanishads
Appendix V: Supplementary List of Folk Cults and Festivals
Glossary: Technical Terms and Unfamiliar Words Used in the Work (In English Alphbetical Order)
Bibliography (Texts and Translations)
Index

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