The course explores the political, cultural and economic histories of South Asia for over a thousand years, after the Mauryan Empire. It begins with the emergence of new states and the rule of the Gupta kings, explores notions of Classical ages, and evaluates the transformations that fostered new agrarian ‘systems’, economies, and the numerous traditions of art, architecture and literary genres. It evaluates the periodisation of the ‘Early Medieval’, and follows the historical processes of consolidation and fragmentation from the 6th century. The increase in land grants, and changing patterns of ownership and tributes lead to changes in the structures of states, and inform of the ‘feudalism debate’. By the end of the first millennium CE, cultural connections with new areas outside the subcontinent, histories of the Arab presence in South Asia, and the rule of the Chola kings and early Sultans of Delhi, heralded different kinds of polities, newer forms of patronage and traditions of art and architecture, expanding trade transactions, and distinctive regional historiographies.