Prof. Suchandra Ghosh, of the Department of History at University of Hyderabad (UoH) and Prof. R. Mahalakshmi, of the Centre for Historical Studies, JNU and an alumnus of Department of History, UoH, co-edited ‘The Economic History of India: Historiographical Issues and Perspectives’, which is a Festschrift for Prof. Ranabir Chakravarti, a renowned Economic and Maritime Historian of early India and former Professor, Centre for Historical Studies, JNU.

The book published by Bloomsbury, India was launched at the India International Centre, New Delhi on the 7th of September, 2023 at an event chaired by Prof. Romila Thapar.

Prof. K.M. Shrimali, former Professor of History, Delhi University, Prof. Ranabir Chakravarti, Prof. R. Mahalakshmi and Prof. Suchandra Ghosh participated in the discussion.

About the Book:

The economic history of early India is a rich and diverse area of study, covering agricultural developments, trade, markets, occupation and professional groups, urbanization and the institutions that govern the economy. Recent research has expanded our understanding of the processes of transformation of the economy in different temporal contexts within the Indian sub-continent. They have particularly led us to explore connected histories given the trans-continental trading networks and movements of people from very early times.

This volume seeks to draw attention to this vast and unexplored terrain in the economic history of early India, by bringing together essays on a new and rich historiography. Essays in the volume cover neglected regions, economic processes and structures. Scholars have looked at questions of settlements, crops that were cultivated and market orientation.

Essays cover material culture and provide insights into how early Indians lived, what kinds of activities they were engaged in, and how they organised their production activities within and outside domestic spaces. Further the volume brings new insights on hierarchy of settlement types, nature of exchange, and the significance of a nodal site in exchange networks. Maritime history as well as the understanding of trade in its varied forms and manifestations are covered in several essays.