For this chapter, the influencing role of night skies is documented for the Indus Valley civilisation.
Neha Khetrapal, Associate Professor, Jindal Institute of Behvaioural Sciences, O.P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat, Haryana, India.
Since the early days of evolution, the nocturnal environment of dark skies has influenced the development and proliferation of ancient socio-religious practices, art, and architecture. Several contemporary studies, targeted at documenting this significance of celestial phenomena for ancient civilisations, have been reported with a Eurocentric prism.
For this chapter, the influencing role of night skies is documented for the Indus Valley civilisation. Further attempts are made to underscore the changes in the socio-religious life of ancient India in line with the dwindling importance of the nocturnal skyscape.
Finally, the theoretical spotlight moves to the recent revival of interest in preserving the dark skies. However, the preserved modern-day night skies are likely to resurrect cultural heritage in a manner that may not impact socio-religious dynamics but at least serve as a driving force for making progress in nocturnal (dark) anthropology and precipitate night-time tourism.
Published in: Dunn, N., & Edensor, T. (Eds.). (2023). Dark Skies: Places, Practices, Communities (1st ed.). Routledge.
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