The volumes of the 'Project on the History of Science, Philosophy and Culture in Indian Civilization' aim at discovering the main aspects of India's Heritage and present them in an interrelated way. These volumes, in spite of their unitary look, recognize the Difference between the areas of material Civilization and those of ideational culture. The Project is not being executed by a single group of thinkers and writers who are methodologically uniform or ideologically identical in their commitments. In fact contributions are made by different scholars with different ideological persuasions and methodological approaches. The Project is marked by what may be called 'methodological pluralism'.
In spite of its primary historical character, this Project, both in its conceptualization and execution, has been shaped by many scholars drawn from different disciplines. It is for the first time that an endeavour of such a unique and comprehensive Character has been undertaken to Study critically a major World civilization like India.
This first volume is a new Adventure in the Historiography of Indian civilization. It avoids the Ethnic and West centred bias which has been a legacy of Colonial historiography. It seeks strict Scientific objectivity, differing from all hitherto existing volumes of this kind by giving due attention to Science and philosophy in the history of Indian civilization.
The contributions are based on the first-hand and critical study of the Original sources by the best known experts. While meticulously attending to Chronology and hard data, the volume also seeks to understand scientific and Philosophical concepts, methods and theories. It seeks to present the Symbolic world of Art and culture as grounded in moral Vision as well as social reality. The work is designed to be of use to scholars and specially to students and General readers.
The volume is divided into six sections: Historiography; Geography and Ethnography; Prehistory, Technology and Social Evolution; Proto-History; The Vedas, Vedic Society and Ideas; and Foundations and beginnings of systematic science.