The Aryan migration theory at first played no particular argumentative role in Hindu nationalism. For this the initiative of the publisher Sita Ram Goel b. Goel may be considered one of the most radical, but at the same time also one of the most intellectual, of the Hindu nationalist ideologues. Although no official connections exist, the books of 'Voice of India' — which are of outstanding typographical quality and are sold at a subsidized price — are widespread among the ranks of the leaders of the Sangh Parivar.
Repercussions of the disagreements about Aryan origins have reached Californian courts with the Californian Hindu textbook case , where according to the Times of India [web 7] historian and president of the Indian History Congress, Dwijendra Narayan Jha in a "crucial affidavit" to the Superior Court of California,. In the end, it belongs, as has been pointed out earlier, to a different 'discourse' than that of historical and critical scholarship.
In other words, it continues the writing of religious literature, under a contemporary, outwardly 'scientific' guise […] The revisionist and autochthonous project, then, should not be regarded as scholarly in the usual post-enlightenment sense of the word, but as an apologetic, ultimately religious undertaking aiming at proving the 'truth' of traditional texts and beliefs.
Worse, it is, in many cases, not even scholastic scholarship at all but a political undertaking aiming at 'rewriting' history out of national pride or for the purpose of 'nation building'. The Indo-Aryan controversy is a manufactured one with a non-scholarly agenda, and the tactics of its manufacturers are very close to those of the ID proponents mentioned above. However unwittingly and however high their aims, the two editors have sought to put a gloss of intellectual legitimacy, with a sense that real scientific questions are being debated, on what is essentially a religio-nationalistic attack on a scholarly consensus.
Sudeshna Guha, in her review of The Indo-Aryan Controversy , notes that the book has serious methodological shortcomings, by not asking the question what exactly constitutes historical evidence. Bryant's call for accepting "the valid problems that are pointed out on both sides" p. Bryant and Patton gloss over the relevance of such distinctions for sustaining the academic nature of the Indo-Aryan debate, although the importance of distinguishing the scholarly from the unscholarly is rather well enunciated through the essays of Michael Witzel and Lars Martin Fosse.
According to Bryant,  OIT proponents tend to be linguistic dilettantes who either ignore the linguistic evidence completely, dismiss it as highly speculative and inconclusive, [note 15] or attempt to tackle it with hopelessly inadequate qualifications; this attitude and neglect significantly minimises the value of most OIT publications. Fosse notes crucial theoretical and methodological shortcomings in the indigenist literature. It makes their works in various degrees underinformed, resulting in a critique that is "largely neglected by Western scholars because it is regarded as incompetent.
Edwin Bryant, a cultural historian, has given an overview of the various "Indigenist" positions in his PhD-thesis and two subsequent publications:. The indigenous Aryan debate and The Quest for the Origins of Vedic Culture are reports of his fieldwork, primarily interviews with Indian researchers, on the reception of the "Indo-Aryan Migration theory" in India.
Another overview has been given by Thomas Trautmann :. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
See also: Indo-Aryan migration theory. Peoples and societies. Religion and mythology.
Indo-European studies. Scholars Marija Gimbutas J. Main articles: Indo-Aryan migration theory and Indo-European migrations. See also: Language shift and Sanskritization. See also: Yuga and Hinduism. Further information: Indian independence movement and Hindu nationalism. Main article: British Raj.
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Ethnohistorical cases […] demonstrate that small elite groups have successfully imposed their languages in non-state situations. The constant interaction of "Afghan" highlanders and Indus plain agriculturists could have set off the process. A further opening was created when, after the collapse of the Indus Civilization, many of its people moved eastwards, thus leaving much of the Indus plains free for IA style cattle breeding.
A few agricultural communities especially along the rivers nevertheless continued, something that the substrate agricultural vocabulary of the RV clearly indicates Kuiper , Witzel a,b. In an acculturation scenario the actual small number of people often used a 'clinching' argument by autochthonists that set off the wave of adaptations does not matter: it is enough that the 'status kit' Ehret of the innovative group the pastoralist Indo-Aryans was copied by some neighboring populations, and then spread further. They quote Emeneau: "absorption, not displacement, is the chief mechanism in radical language changes of the kind we are considering.
Thapar , have maintained that the Indo-Aryans and the older local inhabitants 'Dravidians', 'Mundas', etc. They also think, whether explicitly following Ehret's model , cf. Diakonoff or not, of smaller infiltrating groups Witzel , , Allchin , not of mass migrations or military invasions. However, linguists and philologists still maintain, and for good reasons, that some IA speaking groups actually entered from the outside, via some of the north western corridors of the subcontinent. This dramatic scenario, popularized by Sir Mortimer Wheeler, had white marauders from the northwest enslave the black aboriginals, so that "Indra stands accused" of destroying the Harappan civilization.
Only the extremist fringe of the Indian Dalit ex-Untouchable movement and its Afrocentric allies in the USA now insist on this black-and-white narrative vide Rajshekar ; Biswas But, for this once, I believe the extremists have a point. Even the Gupta age and implicitly the earlier ages of the Buddha, the Mauryas etc. Indeed, the famous playwright and poet Kalidasa, supposed to have worked at the Gupta court in about AD, wrote that the monsoon rains started at the start of the sidereal month of Ashadha; this timing of the monsoon was accurate in the last centuries BC.
This implicit astronomy-based chronology of Kalidasa, about 5 centuries higher than the conventional one, tallies well with the traditional high chronology of the Buddha, whom Chinese Buddhist tradition dates to ca. This hypothetical synchronism is known as the sheet-anchor of Indian chronology. Kak a, "On the classification of Indic languages.
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Elst , "Update on the Aryan Invasion Debate. A Historical Analysis. See, e. Chakrabarti and Rajaram , as cited in Bryant The only exception so far is a thin book by the Indian linguist S. Misra which bristles with inaccuracies and mistakes see below and some, though incomplete discussion by Elst Cited by Carl.
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Western scholars have argued that Indian civilization was the joint product of an invading Indo-European people-the "Indo-Aryans"-and indigenous non-Indo European peoples. Very balanced and even handed despite Bryant walking on a tightrope since he was at Harvard with Witzel when he wrote this.
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