© Sujay Rao Mandavilli3
6.Farmer et al have said nothing substantially new. Even Asko Parpola has beenresearching the Indus script as logogramswith a linguistic component. So Farmer et aland Parpola et al are probably saying largely the same thing with hardly any differences!7.It would be naïve to assume, due to several reasons that will discussed in the paper, thatthe Indus script issue is as simple as it appears to be or is made out to be, due to variousfactors that will be discussed in the paper and as mentioned previously better theoreticalmodels would be the key to better research.
There are many theoretical possibilities we cannot overlook and identifying researchstrategies would also be extremely important.
We must also bear in mind the fact that only a very small portion of the IVC has beenexcavated, and many cities have not been excavated at all i.e. Ganweriwala, Rakhigarhiand only a very small portion of cities like Mohenjodaro has been excavated. Therefore,any hasty conclusions must be viewed with some degree of skepticism.10.Much more importantly, we will conclude that the Indus script is indeed awriting system,as all Western and Indian scholars have always known or assumed. Anyone who wantsto prove that it is not a writing system will have to refute all the points raised in this paper.We will also discuss why Sproat’s smoking gun cannot be used to test the complexity,maturity and stability of the system or prove that it did not have a linguistic component.The refutation of Sproat’s smoking gun is an important part of this paper.11.We will also include a discussion of writing implements and writing materials. While theexistence of books and literature in the Indus has only been seen as a remote possibility,this does not rule out the possibility of longer documents used as administrative or accounting records. We will show that the possibility of longer records existing for at leastaccounting and administrative use does not conflict with any theories pertaining towritingimplements and writing materials either.12.We must strongly condemn any attempts misuse terms pertaining to ‘literacy’, and usinga similar logic can instead even declare the Indus to be one of the most literatecivilizations on earth, though both parties could still be saying the same thing.Terminology pertaining to literacy cannot be changed unless all scholars agree anddemands to change terminology must naturally be met with suspicion.As a matter of factthe Indus possesses a unique interpretation of literacy, not found in contemporarysocieties, going both by the mass production of writing and the presence of a signboard,none of which have been observed in contemporary civilizations.We will also lead readers through a path of introspection, and readers will themselvesconclude towards the end of the paper that the Indus script issue is not as simple as it appearsand that the non-existence of longer texts is a very unlikely scenario.
Circumstances which gave birth to the Indus script: Understanding the transformation of the early to the mature Harappan phase 2600 BC
The transformation from the Early Harappan phase is not well-understood but mostresearchers accept it was breathtakingly rapid and occurred within a period of less than acentury.Gregory L Possehl states:
“The immense differences between the Indus civilization as compared to the earlyHarappan can be seen as a replacement of the older early Harappan symbolic system with a neworder and way of life. The Indus peoples turned their backs on their own past and replaced it withthis and a new order and way of life. Archeologists see this new order or ideology expressed in
The Indus Civilization: A contemporary perspective, Gregory L.Possehl, 2002, Altamira press, Rowmanand Littlefield publishers Inc