Anthropology Answer Writing Practice 2018 - Week 2 - Question 1

90 Days Anthropology Answer Writing Practice Question 1 for 19-Nov-2018

Instructions for Writing Answer

1. Write your answers in the comment section.


2. Experts will provide their feedback in reply.

3. Model Answers will be uploaded on this page the next day.

4. Rectify your mistakes and progress further.

5. All the Best.

19-Nov-2018 - Question 1

Short note on religious elements of indus valley civilization. 10 marks. 150 words.

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Model Answer 

Indus valley civilization is known worldwide for its magnificent urban planning, weights and measures, social and political hierarchy etc. Among these notable achievements are the religious elements of IVC which the archeologists and anthropologists are still trying to decipher. The interpretation of all excavated sites and materials is based on the modern perception including religion.

The various religious elements noted in IVC are as under.

    1. Presence of The Great bath relates to many pools/ kunds one can easily find in other religious denominations. Its uniqueness and context in which it was found suggests it was meant for some kind of special rituals. Fire altars found in IVC also suggest existence of rituals.

   2. Burials in IVC suggests afterlife concept where grave goods like jewelry and pottery are kept. Double burial is also significant findings in this aspect. Various types of burials suggest social differences.

3. Seal of pashupati  in yogic posture has been equated with Lord Shiva (proto-shiva). Also, some stone objects are classified as lingas signifying fertility cult.

4. People in Harappan civilization are considered nature worshippers and animistic w.r.t. religious observance. It is evident from plant motifs like peepal tree and animal motifs like mythical unicorn.

5. Presence of Terracotta Sculpture of mother goddess and bearded priest is suggestive of idol worshipping. Mother goddess is identified with today's mothr earth.

6. Few other objects are discovered which reveal their belief in magic, charms and spells.



In order to find relevance of an object in ancient context archeologists relate it to present context. And in light of the fact that IVC script is not yet deciphered, one can assume that interpretation of most of the religious symbols is speculative.

Note: There is no template for a correct UPSC answer, the model answer is only for your reference


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