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Новое платье ̶к̶о̶р̶о̶л̶я̶ императора: массаж истории в Индии
Для начала врезали по иконе - императору Ашоке, а потом подняли на щит заметённого под ковёр с перефирии (по отношению к Дели, естесственно). Автор для меня новый, но не дебютант. Пишет интересно. Наверное, прочитаю и другую его книгу.

“As one can see, Ashoka does not look like such a great king on closer inspection but a cruel and unpopular usurper who presided over the disintegration of a large and well-functioning empire built by his father and grandfather. At the very least, it must be accepted that evidence of Ashoka’s greatness is thin and he was some shade of grey at best. Perhaps like many politicians, he made grand high-minded proclamations but acted entirely differently. This fits with the fact that he is not remembered as a great monarch in the Indian tradition but in hagiographic Buddhist texts written in countries that did not experience his reign. He was ‘rediscovered’ in the nineteenth century by colonial-era orientalists like James Prinsep. His elevation to being ‘Ashoka the Great’ is even more recent and is the result of political developments leading up to India’s independence.16

After Independence, it appears academic historians were further encouraged to build up the legend of Ashoka the Great in order to provide a lineage to Jawaharlal Nehru’s socialist project and inconvenient evidence was simply swept under the carpet.17 This is not so different from how the medieval Ethiopians created a biblical lineage for the Solomonic dynasty. A few Western writers like Charles Allen have patronizingly written how ancient Indians were somehow foolish to have had little regard for a great king such as Ashoka. On a closer look, it appears that they knew what they were doing. What is more worrying is how easily modern Indians have come to accept a narrative based on such minimal evidence.”

16. For more see: ‘Ashoka, the Not So Great’, Sanjeev Sanyal, Swarajya magazine (22 November 2015). http://swarajyamag.com/culture/ashoka-the-not-so-great
17. See more on this in, ‘Why India Needs to No Longer Be an Ashokan Republic, but a Chanakyan One’, Sanjeev Sanyal, Economic Times (26 January 2016). http://blogs.economictimes.indiatimes.com/et-commentary/why-india-needs-to-no-longer-be-an-ashokan-republic-but-a-chanakyan-one/

“Kharavela’s inscriptions suggest that he had defeated the Satvahanas, the Mauryas, the Indo-Greeks and even the Pandyas of Tamil country in the deep south. Having done all this, he declared that the ‘wheel of conquest’ had been turned—possibly meaning that he had conducted the Vedic ashwamedha-yagya and declared himself a Chakravarti (or World Conqueror).24 This would have made him the most powerful Indian ruler of his time. Despite these achievements, Kharavela is almost never mentioned in Indian textbooks because history is written in a way that systematically emphasizes a continental viewpoint over the coastal perspective. It is as if political power was naturally centered in some inland city like Pataliputra or Delhi, and the rest of India must exist as mere provinces.”

Excerpt From: Sanyal, Sanjeev. “The Ocean of Churn: How the Indian Ocean Shaped Human History.” Penguin Books Ltd, 2016

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