Histories of Archaeology in South Asia | Department of History

Histories of Archaeology in South Asia

An understanding of the histories of archaeological scholarship and practices is crucial for developing the skills of historical methodology and archaeological knowledge. The histories provide critical insights into the many traditions of historiography, and demonstrate the reasons for nurturing a trans-regional and trans-national perspective while writing regional histories. Through histories of antiquarian scholarship and archaeological fieldwork, this paper shall map the many ways in which we can historicize the early archaeological scholarship of India. It shall explore the manner in which the British developed and used archaeology in India, and the disciplinary developments that followed in the early decades of Indian independence. The lecture topics shall create a sense of the unequal encounters of the politics of imperialism, relationships between power and knowledge, uses and abuses of histories of origins, and creations of heritage and legacies. The course shall thereby also attend to issues of ethics.

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