A Review of Cultural History of India by Om Prakash
Cultural History of India is a book by Om Prakash, a professor of history at Delhi University, that covers various aspects of the development of Indian culture from ancient times to the modern period. The book is divided into three parts: religion, art and architecture, and social institutions and economic organization. The book aims to provide a comprehensive and balanced overview of the rich and diverse cultural heritage of India, as well as its interactions with other civilizations and cultures.
In the first part, Prakash discusses how religions such as the Vedic religion, Buddhism, Jainism, Saivism and Vaisnavism aimed at securing social harmony, moral upliftment, and inculcated a sense of duty in the individual. He also examines the impact of Islam on Indian culture, the rise of bhakti movements such as Kabir, Nanak and Chaitanya, the renaissance in the nineteenth century led by Rammohan Roy, and the British impact and the rise of Indian nationalism.
In the second part, Prakash traces the development of Indian art and architecture from the Harappan civilization to the modern period. He highlights the creative efforts of Indian artists and architects to project symbols of divine reality as conceived and understood by the collective consciousness of the people. He analyzes the features and achievements of various styles and periods such as Mauryan, Post-Mauryan, Gupta, Early Medieval, Sultanate, Mughal and Modern art.
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In the third part, Prakash explores the social institutions, educational systems and economic organization of ancient India. He covers topics such as slavery, position of women, family, marriage, samskaras, mercantile community, social conditions in Rajasthan and western India, dietary system, land revenue system, trade and commerce, urbanization and industrialization.
Cultural History of India is an informative and useful book for students, scholars and general readers who are interested in learning about India's proud past, which forms the eternal bedrock of its fateful present and glorious future. The book is based on extensive research and incorporates insights from various sources such as literature, inscriptions, coins, art works and archaeological findings. The book is also well-illustrated with maps, diagrams and photographs to enhance the understanding of the readers.
The book also contains a number of appendices that provide useful information such as a chronological table of Indian history, a list of dynasties and rulers of India, a glossary of Indian terms, and a bibliography of sources and references. The book also has an index that helps the readers to locate specific topics and terms in the book.
The book is written in a clear and lucid style that makes it accessible to a wide range of readers. The book avoids unnecessary jargon and technicalities and explains the concepts and terms in simple language. The book also provides examples and illustrations to support the arguments and claims made by the author. The book is well-organized and structured, with each chapter having an introduction, a main body and a conclusion.
The book is a valuable contribution to the field of Indian history and culture, as it offers a comprehensive and balanced account of the various aspects and dimensions of Indian culture. The book also reflects the author's deep knowledge and understanding of the subject, as well as his passion and enthusiasm for it. The book is a must-read for anyone who wants to learn more about India's rich and diverse cultural heritage, as well as its challenges and opportunities in the modern world. 0efd9a6b88