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Ancient and Medieval Indian Thought

Ancient and Medieval Indian Thought
Themes and Traditions

Edited by:
  • Ankit Tomar - Department of Political Science, Kamala Nehru College, University of Delhi.
  • Suratha K. Malik - Assistant Professor and Teacher-in-Charge in the Department of Political Science, Vidyasagar University, West Bengal
Additional resources:

May 2020 | 316 pages | SAGE Texts
This textbook offers a lucid and comprehensive account of pre-modern Indian thought and traditions.

The book will serve as a helpful reference for undergraduate and post-graduate students of Political Science, Sociology, History and Social Work.This book can also be useful for UGC NET and Civil Service Aspirants

It aims to unravel the ideas and thoughts of ancient and medieval thinkers and various intellectual traditions of the Indian sub-continent. The book departs from the conventional approach and carries a context-driven conceptualization of major strands of pre-modern Indian thought. Further, it provides a roadmap to orient the students to the main themes and traditions of Indian socio-political thought.  Ancient and Medieval Indian Thought will help the reader to understand the basic concepts of Indian political thought and develop a critical understanding of the major themes and issues such as community, state, kingship, culture and religion as perceived by different thinkers.

This multi-authored volume has been designed as a core and invaluable resource for the students, researchers and teachers of political science, sociology and history, and will also be useful for the scholars of other sub-fields of social sciences.

Key Features: 

• Concise and well-balanced coverage of thoughts, ideas and traditions from multi-disciplinary perspective

• Extensive summary and glossary terms at the end of each chapter to help the readers recapitulate better

• Thought-provoking review questions and suggestions for further reading to enrich the teaching-learning experience

Foreword by Ranjan Chakrabarti
Introduction by Sibaji Pratim Basu
Part I: Ancient Indian Thought and Traditions
Suratha Kumar Malik
Dharma in Ancient India: The Moral Law of the Cosmos
Praveen Kumar
Ancient India: Conception and Forms of Community
Kanchan Saxena
Vedas and the Brahmanic Tradition: The Cradle of Hinduism
Mona Singh
Manu: A Progenitor of Humanity
Swasti Alpana
Yajnavalkya: A Vedic Sage
Balaganapathi Devarakonda and Jayshree Jha
Carvaka-Lokayata Tradition: A Tradition of Materialist Philosophy
Ankit Tomar
Shramanic Tradition: An Ascetic Reformism
Prabira Sethy
Sukraniti: A Political Treatise
Nikaya Ish N Mishra
Digha Nikaya (Aggannasutta): Theory of Kingship and Anguttara
Varun Kumar Tripathi
Santi Parva of Mahabharata: Ideas on the Kingship and Dandaniti
Ramakrushna Pradhan
Kautilya: A Pragmatic Thinker
Part II: Medieval Indian Thought and Traditions
Ritu Sharma
Medieval India: State, Society and Religion
Santosh Kumar Mallik and Ramesha Chandra Mahanta
Ziyauddin Barani: Ideas on Good Sultan and Ideal Polity
Sumit Mukerji
Abul Fazl: Views on Governance and Administration
Iftekhar Ahmad
Islamic Tradition: A Tradition of Human Affairs and Classical Heritage
S M Azizuddin Husain
Sufi Tradition In Medieval India
Prabira Sethy
Kabir: An Indian Mystic Saint
Krishna Menon
Women in Bhakti Tradition: A Critical Reflection
Rajendra Kumar Pandey
Syncretic Tradition: A Tradition of Assimilation

This book is an important contribution in the emergent field of ‘Indic thought’, which is much broader than Vedic Brahmanic tradition. There is a need to retrieve ancient philosophy’s relevance and eschew its bygone scriptural diktats. For both, this book should provide a useful reference point.

Ajay Gudavarthy,
Associate Professor, Centre for Political Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi

The book Ancient and Medieval Indian Thought: Themes and Traditions edited by Ankit Tomar and Suratha Kumar Malik is a valuable addition to the existing knowledge on Indian thinkers and their thinking traditions. The analysis beginning with Vedas down to Abul Fazal and keeping the eyes always open to catch the ‘Indianess’ has been fully comprehensive and successful. This is an address to a very loaded and perhaps normative enquiry about the existence of Indian political thought and traditions. The book will be very useful and helpful to all those who need to study Indian political thinking and also to those who have appetite for knowledge about Indian political theory. A great job!

Ashok Kumar Upadhyay,
Professor and Head, Department of Political Science, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi

Ancient and Medieval Indian Thought: Themes and Traditions is a welcome edition to the limited body of literature available on the theme. The present work seeks to introduce some important political ideas in a critical perspective with a view to highlight the significant issues of ancient Indian political thought. The book is written in a student-friendly style and can claim to be a comprehensive account of sociopolitical thought of Indian thinkers and traditions. Being an excellent collection of articles meant for undergraduate and postgraduate students, for scholars it can become a useful reference book.

Chandrika Basu Majumder,
Professor, Department of Political Science, Tripura University (Central University), Agartala

This volume provides relevant information for those who care about varied themes and traditions in the vigorous domain of ‘ancient and medieval Indian thought’. Prepared while bringing together a number of young perceptive scholars, the book is prefaced with a detailed account of what each chapter contains and equipped with a meticulously prepared index, rich glossary and detailed further references.

Ronki Ram,
Fellow and Dean (Faculty of Arts), Shaheed Bhagat Singh Chair Professor of Political Science, Panjab University, Chandigarh

This is a brilliant volume, good collection of articles and essential reading for the students, teachers and researchers on Indian political thought. It unfolds various dimensions of ancient and medieval Indian society. This book will certainly serve the need of academia as well as interested readers well.

R. K. Satapathy,
Professor, Department of Political Science, North-Eastern Hill University, Shillong; Honorary Director, ICSSR-NERC, Shillong

The editors have done a commendable job by producing this book which is theoretically and analytically rich. It provides a comprehensive account of ancient and medieval Indian thinkers and traditions. A number of complex ideas and issues have been presented in an extremely lucid, straightforward and interesting style. This book will be of immense interest to social scientists in general and political scientists in particular who desire to comprehend different dimensions of Indian sociopolitical thought.

Sushma Yadav,
Professor, Vice-Chancellor, Bhagat Phool Singh Mahila Vishwavidyalaya, Haryana; Professor of Public Policy and Governance, IIPA, New Delhi; Member of University Grants Commission, New Delhi; Member of Press Council of India, New Delhi

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ISBN: 9789353882310