Centers ancient India geographically and historically through interdisciplinary accounts of knowledge and representation in texts, languages, and artifacts


Drawn from a variety of academic disciplines and perspectives, Ancient India in Its Wider World approaches ancient India both historically and geographically. The primary temporal focus lies in India’s “Early Historic” period, from the mid-first millennium BCE through the mid-first millennium CE. Geographically, the volume places India at the center of discussions, rather than view South Asia as a corner of the “Roman World” or of some other externally based “world system.” Placing India at the center prompts attention to the extraordinary internal variability and complexity that characterized South Asia during this remarkable period. The subcontinent’s diverse political, economic, linguistic, and ideological structures affected interactions with ahd perceptions of the outside world, both in specific places and at specific times. Contributors examine power and material culture, Greek and Roman understandings of India, and Indian knowledge and understandings of outsiders. The volume as a whole directs us to issues of knowledge and representation—how how individuals in various ancient societies knew or understood the “other.” Ancient India and Its Wider World illuminates the complex webs and networks that throughout Indian history have linked South Asians to each other and to the world beyond the subcontinent. A very wide world indeed.

Grant Parker is Assistant Professor of Classics, Stanford University.Carla M. Sinopoli is Professor of Anthropology and Curator and Director, Museum of Anthropology, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, University of Michigan./di