Ideology and Environment; Situating the Origin of Vedic Culture
The purpose of the present study is to reconstruct social processes in the North-West of South Asia during the Middle Bronze Age and correlate textual and archaeological data to this effect. The basis of textual evidence is the earliest Vedic literature of South Asia, much of which took a concrete shape during the late third and early second millennium BC. The correlation is warranted by the fact that an oral literature of intense religious nature cannot surface from a social void and that the development must have been accompanied by overbearing social compulsions and a state of contingency brought about by catastrophic events in nature and society. The text, which publicizes an ideology of nature worship, already documents quantifiable evidence of both these developments.
The book draws attention to the migration of ethnic Europeans from an intermittently freezing early Holocene Europe to warmer latitudes in and around the Indo-Iranian subcontinent, the eventual birth of a new linguistic relative of the Indo-Iranian family during the fifth millennium BC and the ultimate spread of the ‘centum’ division in the wake of a diasporic return to Europe, which was experiencing warm and humid conditions from the beginning of the fourth millennium BC. The cultural ‘markers’ associated with European steppes also turn out to be the doings of certain Iranian peoples, particularly the saka Iranians who were migrating to different parts of south-eastern Europe from the beginning of the second millennium BC.