Presentation on theme: "CLASSICAL INDIA Daily Objective: To compare and contrast the social, political, and economic characteristics of the Classical Civilizations."— Presentation transcript:
CLASSICAL INDIA Daily Objective: To compare and contrast the social, political, and economic characteristics of the Classical Civilizations.
I. Vedic and Epic Ages (1500-600 BCE) 1500 B.C.E. - fall of the Indus River Valley Civilization (Harappa) 1500 – 600 B.C.E. – Formative Pre-classical Period Nomadic Aryan invaders move in, begin building new civilization Geographical shift to Ganges River Emergence of rigid social structures and the Caste System Combination of native Dravidian and Aryan religions creates Hinduism Sanskrit: unifying written language spread
I. continued Early Religion and Culture Vedas: religious texts of Aryans; collection of hymns and prayers Later during Epic Age: Upanishads Reflects blending ideas with native Dravidians Universal spirit, Brahman; if you live a good life, you can hope to be reincarnated to a higher caste, and eventually unite with the universal spirit
II. Political Development Less cohesive/unified than classical China's political culture Politically fragmented due to diverse geography (Regionalism) Different types of gov't in different areas Monarchies, assemblies of priests/warriors common Warfare common No single language or religion ever took root Caste System firmly in place so political authority only of secondary importance 327 B.C.E. - Alexander the Great invades 322 B.C.E. - Chandragupta Maurya seizes power along the Ganges river, begins Mauryan dynasty Borrows from Alexander the Great: Large, powerful armies Autocratic (absolute) ruler Large bureaucracy
II. continued... Mauryan dynasty united much of the sub-continent for 300 years Grandson Ashoka (269-232 BCE): Conquered many regions with large armies Converted to Buddhism after very bloody battle Tried to promote peace, tolerance, nonviolence Built extensive road networks with wells/rest stops Invaders and political unrest led to decline of Mauryan dynasty India returned to 500 years of fragmented regional kingdoms
II. continued... Gupta dynasty centralized power (320 CE) Under Gupta dynasty, longest period of political stability Focused on negotiating with regional Kings rather than conquest Promoted uniform law code Supported higher education and arts Hindu revival Profitable trade Considered “golden age” of Indian history Fell in 535 CE to invading Huns
Medicine Literature Mathematics Astronomy Printed medicinal guides 1000 diseases classified Plastic Surgery C-sections performed Inoculations 500 healing plants identified Decimal System Concept of Zero PI = 3.1416 Kalidasa Solar Calendar The earth is round Gupta India Gupta Achievements
III. Economy Agriculture based Most of population were farming peasants Focus on trade and merchant activity Merchants had high caste status Trade within India and outside thanks to sea routes on Indian Ocean Trade network Rivaled China in terms of technological advancement Chemistry Steel Ironmaking Manufacturing – cotton cloth, calico, cashmere
Rigid Social Hierarchy based on Aryan: Varnas Shudras: Common Laborers Vaishyas: Traders, farmers Kshatriyas: Warriers, governors Pariahs Untouchables Brahmins:Priests IV. Social Structure
IV. continued... Caste system becomes hereditary Marriage between castes forbidden, punishable by death Each caste subdivided into 300+ jati (livings) and people were assigned occupations Gender relations Patriarchal Husbands & fathers were dominant figures Arranged marriages became the norm More emphasis on loving relations and sexual pleasure than Chinese; small children often pampered
V. Religion Hinduism – From the Sanskrit word, sindhu, meaning “river.” – No single founder - combination of beliefs – Spiritual leaders called gurus or sages – Polytheistic & pantheistic – “god is all” – Main beliefs: Brahma – is the entire universe (pantheism) Several gods over see different aspects of life Vishnu, Shiva Karma - actions in this life that affect the next Dharma - the religious and moral duties of an individual Caste system
V. continued... Buddhism – Founded by Siddhartha Guatama (Buddha= “Enlightened One”) An Indian Prince who lived in luxury and comfort yet realized life is full of suffering Meditated until he became enlightened – Basic Ideas: – It is important to live a moral life – The cause of suffering is desire for things such as riches, power and long life. – Enlightenment is achieved through meditation – The ultimate goal is nirvana - union with the universe and release from the cycle of rebirth.
V. concluded. Hinduism & Buddhism shared beliefs – Karma, reincarnation – keeping people bound to the earth – Emphasis on compassion and non-violence – Emphasize meditation and renouncing worldly things in order to reach the spiritual afterlife
Thesis Paragraph Analyze the similarities and difference in the social and gender structures of two of the following Classical Civilizations: Han China (206 B.C.E.–220 C.E.) Mauryan/Gupta India (320 B.C.E.–550 C.E.)
Key Vocabulary – Chapter 3 Buddha Alexander the Great Aryan Sanskrit Vedas Varnas Untouchables Chandragupta Maurya Mauryan dynasty Kushans Guptas Gurus Reincarnation Vishnu Shiva Nirvana Stupas