Turkish Conquests.rtf - How do the medieval sources come to...

This preview shows page 1 - 3 out of 8 pages.

How do the medieval sources come to represent Indian and Foreign identities? In this context is it correct to call the Turkish advent as the Islamic Conquest? Texts and inscriptions found in Central South Asia, dating back to the 9th and 10th Centuries AD, vividly describe the Turks and Afghans and their "conquest to loot". A number references as well as whole descriptions are available to us, many of which have been argued upon for legitimacy. To get a clearer view, we'll start by discussing the initialy Turkish conquests and identity. Early 1000 to 1200 AD witnessed tremendous political change in Central and West Asia. After a series of events, including the fall of the Abbasid Caliphate; a number of new small states found by Turkish slaves (Who had emerged as military commanders and administrators under the government of the Caliphate) came up. The earliest of these Turkish states was founded by one Sabuktigin, in the region of Ghazni. Under Sabuktigin’s son Sultan Mahmud, Ghazni became a major player in Central Asian politics. With the rise of Ghazni in the 10th century, there was a movement towards establishing Turko- Persian hegemony all across Central Asia and Mahmud launched a series of ambitious campaigns to extend his control over the region. Naturally, these campaigns could only be carried out at considerable financial expense and it was at this time that the pressure of the Turks on the north-western frontier of India came to be felt. Under Mahmud, the Turks launched several raids into India which reached as far as Kanauj, Gwalior and Baran. However a Turkish empire was not established in India under Mahmud. This was the work of another Turkish invader---Muizzuddin Muhammad bin Sam of the Turko- Persian state of Ghur. Muizzuddin Ghuri as he is better known succeeded in establishing himself in Lahore and then proceeded to engage the Rajput rulers who controlled North India in battle. The advent of the Turks in the 11th and 12th centuries AD is often seen as an ‘Islamic Intrusion’ into Indian history. The arrival of the Turks, it is contended, inaugurates the ‘Muslim Era’ of Indian history and the beginning of the confrontation between Hinduism and Islam---two monolithic religions. To equate the Turkish invasions with an Islamic intrusion therefore is historically
inaccurate. This tendency in traditional historiography arises from the colonialist historiographical construct of the periodization of Indian history into 3 periods---Hindu, Muslim and British. This construct, advanced by scholars carries with it the implicit assumption that there existed in Indian society two distinctive and segregated civilizations---the Hindu and the Muslim which were in conflict with each other. The early medieval period was presented as a time when a Muslim civilization became dominant after a period of intense conflict, ushering in an era when the ‘Hindu culture’ of India was suppressed, with temple desecrations, forcible conversions, prohibitions

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture