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Jacqueline Jones, Chair 128 Inner Campus Dr., Stop B7000, GAR 1.104 Austin, TX 78712-1739 • 512-471-3261

Spring 2010


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Course Description

This undergraduate seminar focuses on South Asia during the era of the Mughal empire. Much of the Indian subcontinent came under the control of the Mughal dynasty, ushering in a period of peace and prosperity during which long-lasting economic and cultural linkages were formed between the various regions of the subcontinent. Aside from its cultural splendor, political might, and booming economy, Mughal India is also important for the many ways in which it shaped South Asia's development in subsequent centuries. We will therefore look not only at Mughal India at the height of imperial power between approximately 1550 to 1750, but also at the continuing legacies and symbolic relevance of the Mughal dynasty in British India and in India today. The basic political history of the period will be covered in the course, through occasional lectures by the instructor and readings drawn from recent secondary scholarship on the Mughal empire. However, the emphasis will be on exposing students first-hand to original sources from the Mughal period such as court chronicles and European travel accounts, as well as material from more recent eras such as films and historical novels. Considerable class time will also be spent on the painting and architecture of the era, as well as on the religious patronage and social composition of the court elites. By the end of the semester, students should be familiar with the main developments of the Mughal era and have a sense of how the Mughal dynasty has been remembered by later generations.


1) Catherine B. Asher & Cynthia Talbot, India Before Europe 2) Andre Wink, Akbar (Makers of the Muslim World series) 3) Michael Fisher, Visions of Mughal India: An Anthology of European Travel Writing 4) Wheeler M. Thackston trans., Baburnama: Memoirs of Babur, Prince and Emperor 5) course pack


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