The Development of Indian Temple Architecture and Sculpture A.D350-1350

-  Prof Naman P. Ahuja

This survey of the types and styles of sculpture, architecture and painting that survive from AD 350 - 1350 examines the morphological variations of temples and sculpture styles and sites from the earliest religious shrines in the immediately pre- Gupta period, through the regional schools and styles of the early medieval period. It looks at Jain, Buddhist and Hindu architectural contexts and explores the economic, social and religious functions of the art and buildings made in that period.

It will further explore the increasing complexity of Hindu iconography and the economic base and social motivations for patronage. Students will find it helpful if they start acquainting themselves with the mythology of the main gods before the term starts. They may use any publication (even comic-books) in any language they prefer. In addition, it will be useful to have an introduction to some political and cultural history for which the following books should be useful:

• Diana L. Eck, Darsan: Seeing the Divine Image in India, Anima Books Pennsylvania, 1981, Second edn. 1985 (and widely reprinted).

• Gavin Flood, An Introduction to Hinduism, Cambridge University Press (South Asian paperback edition by Foundation Books, New Delhi: 1998)

• George Michell, The Hindu temple: An Introduction to its Meanings and Forms (London 1977, reprinted Chicago 1988)

• Romila Thapar, The History of India, from the origins to AD 1300. (Penguin Books India, 2003)

• Heinrich Zimmer, Myths and Symbols in Indian Art and Civilization, (ed. Joseph Campbell), Princeton University Press, Bollingen Series VI, (first published in 1946, and widely reprinted since, including Indian editions)