Skip to comments.Bones kill myth of happy Harappa - Study shows gender discrimination
Posted on 12/04/2011 8:32:52 PM PST by SunkenCiv
A study of human bones from the ruins of Harappa has revealed signs of lethal interpersonal violence and challenged current thinking that the ancient Indus civilisation was an exceptionally peaceful realm for its inhabitants.
An American bioarchaeologist has said that her analysis of skeletal remains from Harappa kept at the Anthropological Survey of India, Calcutta, suggests that women, children and individuals with visible infectious diseases were at a high risk of facing violence.
Gwen Robbins Schug studied the skeletal remains of 160 individuals from cemeteries of Harappa excavated during the 20th century. The burial practices and injuries on these bones may be interpreted as evidence for social hierarchy, unequal power, uneven access to resources, and outright violence, she said in a presentation earlier this week at a meeting of the American Anthropological Association in Montreal, Canada...
She found signs of accidental injuries on skeletal parts, but the majority of head injuries appeared to be the result of clubbing. The prevalence of such head injuries was about six per cent -- a low figure for an ancient state-society. However, the distribution of the head injuries across gender and class appeared striking.
(Excerpt) Read more at telegraphindia.com ...
Gwen Robbins Schug looks at a Harappan human bone at the Anthropological Survey of India in Calcutta
|GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother & Ernest_at_the_Beach|
[singing] haah, haah, haah, they call it Harappa...
A University of Cambridge archaeologist Jane McIntosh had about a decade ago in her book on the Indus civilisation described it as an exceptionally peaceful realm where everyone led a comfortable existence under the benevolent leadership of a dedicated priesthood.
For decades they said pretty much the same about the Maya and the Anasazi, and probably other ancient cultures I'm not as familiar with.
Then they deciphered the Maya script and found they were as dedicated to warfare and public torture as any people in history.
And they found that at least some of the Anasazi were cannibals and quite possibly into genocide and human sacrifice. Why this should have been a surprise is beyond me, given the pretty obvious defensive nature of the cliff dwellings. But for a long time the PC view was that the cliff dwellings had nothing to do with defense.
These folks hate war and constantly reinvent the fantasy of a golden age in the past where it didn't exist. Often combined with the mythical matriarchal society.
All this of course tells us nothing at all about ancient societies and quite a bit about the modern idiots claiming to interpret them. They never seem to give any consideration to what would actually happen to a peaceful society in contact with a warlike one.
A sword cut is mentioned. They had swords back then?
Also ties into modern Indian politics.
For some obscure reason some Indians find the notion that the Indo portion of the Indo-European languages were brought in by invaders to be degrading to India. I’ve never quite been able to figure out why. These languages were equally brought to Persia and Europe by invaders, and nobody in these countries finds the notion disturbing in any way.
But many Indians subscribe to the somewhat idiotic notion that the IO languages originated in India and spread by migrations out of India. Despite the fact that we have thousands of years of history of dozens or hundreds of migrations/invasions into India and none in the other direction.
You all up to go clubbing? Bust a move?
I didn’t quite get that part.
They routinely whacked the women on the head but not the men? That’s pretty much the opposite of every society I’m aware of. Including our own.
Sharp rock, sword. The Agony and the Ecstasy...
NOOOOOO . . . Not Gender Discrimination.
Things are a lot safer there now, as most of the unruly types migrated to the south side of Chicago quite some time ago.
They were Bronze Age. You can make a decent sword out of bronze, though they were very expensive and thus usually limited to high aristocracy.
The Trojan war guys found with bronze weapons.
Interestingly, when iron working became widespread it caused the collapse of societies around the world and led to centuries of Dark Age.
Based on tooth enamel. It must be true.
The men got to spill their guts out over their knees, by their own hand. The women and kids got a killing stroke to the head. Merciful.
They routinely whacked the women on the head but not the men?
The good old days...
Modern ideas of “peace” and dignity to all, came from Christianity. Without the Christian paradigm and the concept of Mary as the Mother of God— equality only consisted for a few select groups.....never women.
There was rampant brutality and slavery, rampant child abuse and infanticide, rampant homosexuality and pederasty and no dignity and worth given to women. This was in all corners of the pagan/occultist/atheist world.
The Jews who established marriage as between one man and one woman —and the Old Testament was the Foundation of Christianity along with Aristotle’s Ethics and parts of Plato and all of Cicero.
Islam is a regression to the pagan world of Persia—extremely brutal, homosexual and hateful of women and butchered children....not like the Greek world which had a respect for philosophy and wisdom although they also had rampant homosexuality and pederasty....but their thinking through the Stoics led to Cicero and the Age of Reason in the Western World.
Slow down there Turbo. What was the name of the guy whose face "Launched A Thousand Ships"???
Well, it was Helenus. But then Xena promised Homer she'd sleep with him if he changed "Helenus" to "Helen."
Then Xena ran off with Midas, who promised her a lot of gold...and free mufflers.
That was dignity and worth for beauty. Beauty and harmony (perfection) were ideals of Ancient Greece.....men in that age were just as likely (actually MORE likely) to be in love with a beautiful young boy-—Read Plato. Pederasty and homosexuality were common and superior to heterosexuality.
You are tempocentric, sir, judging peace by the standards of your own era.
Gee, Sherman, I hate to break this to you: DNA proves that theory of an invasion from the north in India to be false. It was the other way ‘round!
There is also a mention of a sewage drain. They had plumbers back then?
Depending on how you define "sword"... sure. Of course iron and bronze have been worked into weapons for thousands of years. But even back in the stone age there were wooden "swords" with shards of obsidian or other glass-like stone stuck along an edge. Crude, but effective and fearsome.
The only group I'm aware of that left India to the north and west in historical time are the Romany.
Technology doesn’t really change the basic human condition.
I thought the Dark Ages were a Renaissance Humanist myth.
Yeah, the 20th c claim that the Aryans were indigenous is just anachronistic nationalist (and isolationist) agitprop.
IndoEuropean languages have no common word for large bodies of water (IOW, each language borrowed a word from whatever locals they found when they first saw the sea); added to the fact that some odd practices described in their own ancient literature have been found only in archaeological contexts in Central Asia, and used plants that only grow there, it’s no coincidence that the Aryan invasion of India (also found in their own ancient literature) came down out of the central Asian highlands — just as Alexander the Great did later, and in fairly recent times, the Muzzies.
The Indus Valley scripts of the Harappan civ, though still unread, appear to have been used to record an agglutinative language (Sumerian, or something related, is a possibility, as the Sumerians themselves came from the east, by their own account), and there’s no sign of the all-important horse — all-important to the Aryans, that is. IOW, regardless of the colonization pattern of the Harappans (recent study has shown the northwestern sites are not older, but newer), the Aryans came from Central Asia. :’)
Indus-like inscription on South Indian pottery from Thailand
The Hindu | Thursday, April 8, 2010 | Iravatham Mahadevan
Posted on 04/07/2010 8:03:34 PM PDT by SunkenCiv
I believe S.L. was referring to the supposed dark age that followed the supposed collapse of the Bronze Age civ. Scientific dating has shown that it, too, is a modern myth — there was no single beginning or end to the use of bronze, and there wasn’t a Greek dark age.
From Indus Valley To Coastal Tamil Nadu
The Hindu | 5-2-2008 | TS Subramanian
Posted on 05/02/2008 8:03:44 PM PDT by blam
It’s hard to know what the average person thought in ancient Greece—the surviving literature comes from a tiny fraction of the population, mostly members of the elite. Men wanted sons and to carry on their families so most free men married (unless they were killed in battle too young). There were lots of female prostitutes. Probably for the average male most of his sexual activity over the course of his life was with his own wife, with the rest divided between prostitutes and adolescent males—but it isn’t certain that all men indulged in pederasty (it may have been more prevalent in the upper levels of society).
Indus Valley’s Bronze Age civilisation ‘had first sophisticated financial exchange system’
Telegraph | Tuesday, November 17, 2009 | Dean Nelson
Posted on 11/20/2009 7:55:16 PM PST by SunkenCiv
Deciphering “The Mother of All CrosswordÂ Puzzles”
Posted on July 3, 2011 by xenohistorian
The most telling are the laws that existed....there actually were laws created to “encourage” marriage when men became at the age to reproduce since most men needed encouragement to leave their lovers-—they put in laws and customs to discourage homosexuality until the men at least produced sons. They treated marriage as “necessary” and homosexuality as the recreation and “fun”.
In studying art (I got my degree in Fine Art), I was exposed to a culture which glorified homosexuality—put it on a higher level than heterosexual activity.
But the ideal was man/boy “love” and that was an accepted and even celebrated “lifestyle” in Ancient Greek culture—yes, always the elite practices which filtered down to the “worldview” in the culture. Most Greeks couldn’t afford the time for seduction and entertainment of boys...they needed to survive by working and there were the Stoics and ideology on the fringe (the Old Testament) which eventually changed worldview, particularly with the advance of Christianity which revolutionized the worldview and put homosexuality and pederasty—so common in all cultures, in the closet.
Columbus found rampant homosexuality in the pagan world-—the Samurai had the same man/boy paradigm as the Greeks....so do the Afghanis today. The Brownshirt occultist also had homosexual orgies with boys from the Hitler Youth.....it is a worldview....just an opposite one of the Bible which is the basis of the USA worldview—or was.....
Thanks for the info. You’re terrific and I love reading your stuff.
Pretty much all historians agree the period from around 500 to 1000 qualifies pretty well as a Dark Age in western Europe relative to what came before and after. Some take off a century or two on the front or back of this period.
Where the Renaissance Humanist guys came in was classifying absolutely everything from the Fall of Rome to their own perfectness as “dark ages,” including the High Middle Ages, which were as creative as any period in history, but denigrated by the RHs for not slavishly imitating the Greeks and Romans.
The funny part, of course, is that Renaissance civilization drew at least as much from the “dark” Middle Ages as from classical civilization.
My point was that the earlier Bronze Age civilization collapsed about as completely as the later classical version and was followed by a true “dark age.”
What I find bizarre is that many Indians are passionate about the issue. They get really, really upset if anyone suggests that Europe and India may have both gotten their dominant languages from a Central Asian source. Meanwhile nobody in Europe or America seems to be in the least offended by the possibility. I just don’t understand why Indians find the idea offensive.
There were many, many invasions of India from the north and northwest. Alexander and the Moguls were just two of the best known.
India, by ancient standards, was wealthy and fertile. Tribes and nations stuck in Central Asia or Afghanistan had major incentives to raid or invade down onto the plains.
But those already living in the plains had little or no incentive to move up into the much harsher conditions of the mountains and deserts. So they didn’t, except for some empires that conquered parts of Afghanistan and thereabouts with the idea of stopping the raids and invasions. Which never worked for long.
“social hierarchy, unequal power and uneven access to resources”
And I forgot to add...GUILTY!
“...the Aryans came from Central Asia.”
Yeah, that’s what I was taught at university, too. Genetics and microbiology has changed all that in the interim, especially in the subcontinent of India.
Glad you brought up the Sumerians, as they are an interesting group. Fifteen thousand years ago the entire Persian Gulf was dry land and that dry land extended for dozens of kilometers out towards the Indian Ocean, past the present Straight of Hormuz, past today’s nation of Oman, and out into the Gulf of Oman.
The continental shelf along the Indian Ocean was broad enough and furthermore, ice free, allowing travel along its great length. Since the future Australian aborigines travels by boat to Australia 40,000 years ago, no doubt travel by boat existed across the Indian Ocean, which explains why drowned pyramids can be found off the Maldives Islands, the southern tip of India, ziggurats in ancient Sumeria, and of course pryramids in present-day Egypt.
So much water was locked up in ice that much of the world’s sea level was three hundred to four hundred feet lower than todays’ sea level. Many of the areas most comfortable to humans back then would have been found around the Indian Ocean and particularly where today’s ‘drowned’ Indonesian archipelago, back then dry land, exists today. Becasue it took so long for the much of that sea level to gradually rise - between 15,000 to 8,000 years ago - entire populations had time to migrate.
The Aryans, if they ever really existed as a singular population, are ‘johnny-come-lately’ in terms of migratory groups.
The remains of stone cities can be found off the coastlines of India. Pyramids have been sighted underwater around the Maldives Islands. Our western-oriented archaeological experts have a hard time getting their minds around just how ancient the human civilizations around the Indian Ocean just might be, because they’ve been closely examining past human populations who were surviving on the edge of wildernesses up north.
We’re just beginning to recognize that large ancient populations lived in the Brazilian river basin and that the “Rain Forest” isn’t as timeles, enduring and primevil as greenies would wish it to be.
Here’s something for you to ponder: there is a breed of horse known today as the Akhal-teke. It is the single oldest horse breed in the world and is the source for most refined horse breeds in existence today. This breed or type of horse is found in the tombs of the ancient Scythians and all across the steppes into western Mongolia. It is a highly refined appearing horse (two of the three founding stallions of the Thoroughbred Horse used for racing were Akhal-tekes) and was used as a war horse not just of the Turkomen tribes in Central Asia, but the ancient Greeks and Egyptians depicted this horse on friezes pulling war chariots thousands of years ago. The remains of this ancient horse never appear anywhere in Pakistan nor India; in Persia, yes. Never in India or the Indus River basin.
So, how did the Aryans move out of Central Asia and across India if it wasn’t on horseback?
See my post at 41 for an answer.
But that doesn't come close to invalidating the stunning linguistic and DNA evidence showing a close link between European, Persian and Aryan groups.
The Aryans, if they ever really existed as a singular population, are johnny-come-lately in terms of migratory groups.
Agreed. Probably sometime in 2nd millenium BC, which is long after other societies had been in India.
Sanskrit and the Vedic religion were almost duplicated in the kingdom of Mitanni in the Fertile Crescent at about this time. Surely the most logical explanation is a people or group of peoples somewhere north of Persia splitting, one part going SW and the other SW.
Do you have an explanation why this theory is offensive to Indians?
It is offensive to Indians because their own archaeological investigations indicate it is false.
Her other photos are better. :’)
Fortunately there has been an upsurge in interest in the real history of India and many archeologists, from what I have read, are doing serious research. British indologists purposely lied about the antiquity of the Vedas and India’s ancient history to try to convince educated Indians that Europe was superior and that India was barbaric. The British needed to fabricate a false history of India. The Aryan invasion is part of that false history.
Quite accurate. However, the common point of view is that the Mitanni and Aryans are descended from a common group off the steppes, one group going SW into the Middle East, and the other SE into India.
If you push back the dates before the known Persians you will clearly see that groups of Indians from Today's Iran/Persia migrated to the middle east and Egypt.
I have seen this claim made, but I have never seen anything but speculation to support it.
You will observe that Northern European languages are not Indo-european.
Actually, they are. All European languages are Indo-European, with the minor exceptions of those in the Basque and Uralic families.
Thanks for your attempt to explain why Indians are offended by the commonly accepted (outside India) theories of the populating of India.
I assume you do realize there is a general skin color gradient in India from lightest in the NW to darkest in the SE. The most logical explanation of this is that a different group entered from this direction and its genetic contribution became less with distance from point of entry.
The linguistic evidence parallels this. In particular, there is a linguistic principle whereby the diversity of a given language or language group is greatest near its point of origin. This has been applies to track the movement of many language groups back to their origin, including the Bantu and Austronesian groups. Even for the English language, the UK has many more accents and dialects than the much larger Engligh-speaking population of North America. Using this principle for the Indo-European languages, you wind up with a point of origin somewhere around the Urals.
My understanding is that the genetic evidence is not nearly as one-sided as you claim.
No offense, but to an unprejudiced outside observer, the violent resistance by some in India to the generally accepted scientific evidence looks like compensation for an inferiority complex. The claims I've read look like an attempt to find ammunition for a pre-determined position rather than a search for truth.
Science doesn't take the ancient myths of any people, by themselves, as valid evidence of the origin of peoples, so Indians shouldn't be so upset about it.
I can see that to an outside observer, people tend to see a ‘color’ gradient from north to south India. What many don’t know or are unable to regularly see on TV or movies is that North East India is made up of Mongoloid/oriental populations. The Skin variations in North west India/Pakistan has much more to do with the Offspring of South Indians and these groups than anything to do with ancestral populations of south Europeans. It is quite probable that further offspring between Semitic populations during the prominent silk road periods in the Punjab areas of India/Pakistan has given them a more Mediterranean appearance.
As to the languages of North Europe, the surviving languages Basque and Uralic—yet these hint at greater extinct languages that existed prior to a language change in the region. There are no extinct languages in India—they are all related. Sanskrit derived languages are spoken as far as Bali Indonesia so I don’t find it improbable that while languages can spread—significant genetic changes are not the only method of spreading them.
I suppose to Indians The claims they’ve read look like an attempt to find ammunition for a pre-determined position rather than a search for truth.
Believe me Mr Logan, If there was direct scientific proof that Indians are derived from ancestral populations, also related to Europeans, many Indians would be open to the idea and like to know and find out what their ancestors were about, how they lived, what they believed and found important.
Its just that there is no proof outside of a link in language/religion—you seem confident that there is, could you cite some papers?
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