Early Indians
Who are we Indians ? Where did we come from ? Many of us believe our ancestors have lived in South Asia since 'time immemorial'. But, as it turns out, 'time immemorial' may not have been all that long ago. To tell us the story of our ancestry, journalist Tony Joseph goes 65,000 years into the past—when a band of modern humans, or Homo sapiens, first made their way from Africa into the Indian subcontinent. Citing recent DNA evidence, he traces the subsequent large migrations of modern humans into India—of agriculturalists from Iran between 7000 and 3000 BCE and pastoralists from the Central Asian Steppe between 2000 and 1000 BCE, among others. As Joseph unravels our history using the results of genetic and other research, he takes head-on some of the most controversial and uncomfortable questions of Indian history: Who were the Harappans? Did the 'Aryans' really migrate to India? Are North Indians genetically different from South Indians? And are the various castes genetically distinct groups? This book relies heavily on path-breaking DNA research of recent years. But it also presents earlier archaeological and linguistic evidence—all in an entertaining and highly readable manner. A hugely significant book, Early Indians authoritatively and bravely puts to rest several ugly debates on the ancestry of modern Indians. It not only shows us how the modern Indian population came to be composed as it is, but also reveals an undeniable and important truth about who we are: we are all migrants. And we are all mixed.

Early Indians Details

TitleEarly Indians
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseDec 18th, 2018
PublisherJuggernaut Publication
ISBN-139789386228987
Rating
GenreNonfiction, History

Early Indians Review

  • Abhinav Gupta
    January 1, 1970
    India has had a weird relationship with its history prior to Mauryan empire. History by its nature is imprecise but, in this case, confusion is compounded by the fact that Harappan script remains undeciphered and there are very few archaeological remains of Vedic society. The confusion has only been furthered by ideologically motivated or imaginative thinkers who have colored this phase of history with their own agendas. Top example remains forcibly trying to conflate Harrapans with Vedic societ India has had a weird relationship with its history prior to Mauryan empire. History by its nature is imprecise but, in this case, confusion is compounded by the fact that Harappan script remains undeciphered and there are very few archaeological remains of Vedic society. The confusion has only been furthered by ideologically motivated or imaginative thinkers who have colored this phase of history with their own agendas. Top example remains forcibly trying to conflate Harrapans with Vedic society by force fitting Harrapan civilization as Sarasvati civilization. Other examples include myths of Aryan purity, artificial divide between Dravidians & North Indians and nature and scale of Vedic society itself. What remains underappreciated in this mess is that Harappan Civilisation was the largest and most widespread of its time with large population and huge cities – which ideally should make us proud. We somehow have failed to relate to our Harrapan ancestors (yes ancestors) in our cultural consciousness.This book masterfully breaks through all this confusion and provides clarity and perspective to answer all such questions. The modern science of genetics, linguistics, paleo-geology, anthropology, and archaeology are now beginning to provide a clearer picture and this book translates the latest ideas for laymen.The narrative that emerges only makes us prouder as Indians and brings us closer to our own heritage. The message of unity in diversity is not only a slogan but is integral part of our own genetic makeup and our rich historical story.P.S. I am further excited to pay a visit to scores of Harappan sites after reading this book.
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  • Samuel Premkumar
    January 1, 1970
    A nice and easy to read book on the population history of India. Tony Joseph traces the human migration in to India from 65000 years ago to the later waves of migration, based on the new data available from the science of ancient DNA analysis. While linguistic and archeology studies had some gaps in the migration theory, the ancient DNA study fills in the gap. The book should be read along with David Reich's. "Who we are and how we got here" as it has the complete scientific data and proofs.Tony A nice and easy to read book on the population history of India. Tony Joseph traces the human migration in to India from 65000 years ago to the later waves of migration, based on the new data available from the science of ancient DNA analysis. While linguistic and archeology studies had some gaps in the migration theory, the ancient DNA study fills in the gap. The book should be read along with David Reich's. "Who we are and how we got here" as it has the complete scientific data and proofs.Tony Joseph has revived the Aryan Invasion Theory which is most likely to be unpalatable to a few. I won't be surprised if these people rate the book down in various social media forums.Meat vs Milk is an interesting observation.
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