Summer 2023 - HIST 252 D100

Islamic India (3)

Class Number: 3236

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    May 8 – Aug 4, 2023: Thu, 12:30–2:20 p.m.

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Aug 10, 2023
    Thu, 5:00–5:00 p.m.



A survey of the cultural patterns, social and political forces, and historical contexts that have shaped the Islamic period of Indian history. Special attention will be directed toward the Mughal empire and its decline. Breadth-Humanities.


This course is a survey of the cultural patterns, social and political forces, and historical contexts that have shaped the Islamic period of Indian history. Our course will start with India at the cusp of the arrival of Islam (750 AD to 1200). And so we move to studying the growth and development of an Islamic culture in India . During this period we will explore the important changes in Indian economy and society, especially in caste, slavery, religion and technology. We will also see how political movements influenced widespread societal change as we study the rise of provincial dynasties all over India; regional “heroes” who come to challenge the Islamic Sultans of the north. We also see how the early intervention by the Portuguese explorers to the south and west of India infiltrated Islamic defences and coloured Indian culture during this period. This rich multicultural foundation brings us to the establishment and consolidation of the grand empire of the Mughals, the greatest the world had ever seen. We will focus much of our attention on the magnificent achievements of the Mughal Empire, looking at issues such as administration, music, art, society, culture, statecraft, sexuality and international relations. This era of many players in Indian politics allows us to make very fruitful studies of the condition of women, peasants, bilingual agents and emergent Indian mercantile classes whose agency contributes to the fall of Islamic rule and establishment of European colonialism. We end our course with examining the causes and effects of the fall of the Mughals in the 17th century and the early days of British rule.


  • Participation (calculated thoughout) 20%
  • Academic journal 20%
  • Primary source analysis 25%
  • Final paper or project 35%



 Catherine B Asher and Cynthia Talbot eds. India before Europe (Paperback)


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Registrar Notes:


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Students with a faith background who may need accommodations during the semester are encouraged to assess their needs as soon as possible and review the Multifaith religious accommodations website. The page outlines ways they begin working toward an accommodation and ensure solutions can be reached in a timely fashion.