Indus and Yellow River Valleys •Origin and spread of ideas •Interaction between the “civilized” and “uncivilized” 1. Indus vs. Aryans •Note: Harappan civilization same as Indus •Historical Significance 1. Indus discovered to British in the 1840s (ruins knew earlier by locals) 2. British used Indus brick in railroad construction 3. Increasing interest in increases 4. Discovery of seals with writing intensifies interest 5. Harappa “discovered” in 1920s 6. They said it’s a “new”/ just discovered civilization even though locals, everyone knew about it for years •Geography
•Harappa- located on Pakistan/India border •Rivers- land so flat so rivers would change often, especially as sediment built up or geographical changes 1. Cities rose and fell based on flow of river •Farming 1. Crops mostly from Mesopotamia, so probably didn’t develop farming on own but learned from Mesopotamia. •Harappan Civilization 1. Class Inferences ?Bricks- standardized; have city projects/central planning-very organized ? Have a working class ?Open areas- gatherings/communal things •Public Bath? ?Trench-Sewage line?
Compartments- family and ownership? equality (all same size) •The Mysterious End of the Harappan Civilization 1. Indo-European Immigrants (Aryans)- 2. Based on language group- started (see map in powerpoint) and migrated out. 3. Vedic Culture ?Composed the Vedas (old texts written by Aryan or Indo-Aryan peoples) ? Oral History from hundreds of years before written down 4. Two theories about change ?1) Aryans invaders destroyed Indus civilization borrowing little and taking survivors as slaves/ lower caste (start of caste system ?
2) Indus and Aryans culture blend with Indus civilization having a significant impact on future cultures 5. Observations in Rig Vedas ?Earlier texts name western locations. Later texts don’t (inference- moved east to west) ? Numerous prayers asking for heroic son to be born. No prayers for heroic (or any) daughters- more male centric ? Reference to livestock in earlier texts. First reference to rice in later texts. (maybe originally herders and later farmers) ? Evidence of daily life among Aryans- quote on gambler
•Occupations named- Herder, farmer, carpenter, wheelwright … 6. Evidence of Aryan Contributions to Indus Collapse (Evidence ? Rig Vedas discuss Aryan victories over fortified cities with dark skinned inhabitants ? Military (horse/iron) technology-would have made it possible ? Migration pattern (west to east) ?Un-buried skeletons in latest levels of Mohenjo Daro- suggests war ? Loss of Indus literacy •Not very likely they just abandoned their writing unless conquered and forced to abandon 7. Evidence Against Aryan contribution to Indus Collapse
?Aryans were pastoral and lived in bamboo huts. Could they defeat a civilization? ?Aryans left no artifacts during time in question •Looks like they just moved in maybe ?Changing course of rivers offers alternative explanation- forced to abandon cities because of no water ? No skeletal evidence of genetically different people •Just find one genetic type of people ?Other explanations 8. We don’t know which is correct 9. Things to remember ?Borrowed farming ?Standardization across cities (built the same way, bricks all same measurements) ? Don’t know why disappeared