The Aryans (again); 19th century discourse.

Paul Kekai Manansala kekai at JPS.NET
Fri Dec 18 18:48:03 UTC 1998

N. Ganesan wrote:
> Mr. Paul K. Manansala wrote:
> *        In Talageri's letter, he claimed that the Hindutva side
> *did not hold the
> *position that Indo-European languages originated in India. Does anyone
> *know where they do believe IE came from?
> Mr. Ashish Chandra wrote:
> $If you mean the IE languages, there is a belief that language itself
> grew
> $because of peoples' interactions and not because there was some
> commonality
> $of stock. As for IE people, the RgVedic people (wrongly referred to as
> $being Aryans) were the original inhabitants of the land around
> Sarasvati
> $river. Where di they come from, no one knows. But there was certainly
> no
> $move from Europe or Caspian Sea into the land of the seven rivers.
> $Just like N.Ganesan, I am adamantly holding on to the view that Aryan
> means
> $noble and that it does not refer to race. The Vedic people are our
> $ancestors and I will never believe that Indians came from anywhere but
> the
> $Sarasvati region. Call me Hindutvavadi or whatever.
>   Mr. P. K. Manansala, often times, writes in Indology about
>   the need to realize that materials, culture, religion, language
>   travel/diffuse without movement of people.
>   Indigenous Aryan schoolers like Mr. A. Chandra extend that
>   to extremes.
>   Establishment of English in India required British in
>   good numbers for 2 centuries+. Not as low stature immigrants.
>   But as the colonizing, imperialistic, all-powerful rulers.
>   This happened with  the help modern secular education for all,
>   tremendous improvements in communications (eg., rail roads),
>   publishing, printing, literacy & so on.
>   In the Rig veda, Aryans and horses go together hand in hand.

But does the Rgveda have any bearing on Indian demographic or other

It still has to be explained
>   how Sanskrit was borrowed wholesale "because of peoples'
>   interactions". In the late bronze age, how Sanskrit was borrowed
>   from outside without people moving in and spread to the
>   whole of India. In those days, there were less roads, no
>   modern technolgy, less communication methods.

> From what I understand, Mr. Chandra is not saying Sanskrit was
"borrowed" but it arose out of a convergence of language influences.

>   Any examples in the world around 1500 BC (or 4000 BC,
>   if Indigenous Aryans insist) where a language spread
>   without "elite dominance" in preliterate late bronze
>   age societies? In preliterate communities?

Why would you limit it to this time period?  Communication in Asia was
much the same in the late bronze age (if that indeed is the relevant
period) as it was until just several centuries ago.

>   120 years of academic research in India and the West has
>   established that Aryans and Sanskrit entered India
>   around 1500 BC.

This is indeed an overstatement.  Even the AI theorists are divided
about when "Aryans" entered India.  The Allchin's recent work on Indian
civilization clearly shows that even in the West there is growing doubt
about the AI theory (or even a mass migration theory).

Paul Kekai Manansala

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