The Indus Valley (The Masters of the River)


This documentary, made by NHK (Japan) and Canadian TV, looks at the early Indus Valley civilisation, focusing on one of the lesser known sites at Dholavira, in what is now Gujarat, in western India.

With the help of CGI animation the documentary reconstructs the ruined city and shows how the civilisation was able to grow to a formidable size by its innovative harnessing of a now vanished river system.

Interviewing some of the leading experts on the site, including Dr RS Bisht, who is the leader of the archeological research, the film pieces together one of the most remarkable stages in human development, when, with the rise of city life, international trade across large areas became feasible.

This becomes important when trying to deipher the Indus Valley script, around 200 characters of which have been found in Dholavira. They also traveled along the trade routes to Sumeria, and if one day the script is deciphered it will quite possibly be through finding parallel texts in the two scripts.

Anyone wanting to understand more about the pre-Aryan history of India would do well to watch this programme which is one of the better produced films I have seen on this ancient civilisation.


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