Indology may also be known as Indic studies or Indian studies, or South Asian studies, although scholars and university administrators sometimes have only partially overlapping interpretations of these terms.
The term Indology or (in German) Indologie is often associated with German scholarship, and is used more commonly in departmental titles in German and continental European universities than in the anglophone academy. In the Netherlands the term Indologie was used to designate the study of Indonesian history and culture in preparation for colonial service in the Dutch East Indies.
Some scholars distinguish Classical Indology from Modern Indology, the former more focussed on Sanskrit and other ancient language sources, the latter on contemporary India, its politics and sociology.
The beginnings of the study of India by outsiders date back at least to Megasthenes (ca. 350–290 BC), a Greek ambassador of the Seleucids to the court of Chandragupta (ruled 322-298 BC), founder of the Mauryan Empire. Based on his life in India Megasthenes composed a four-volume Indica, fragments of which still exist, and which influenced the classical geographers Arrian, Diodor and Strabo. Megasthenes reported that the caste system dominated an essentially illiterate India.
As with many academic subjects which seem to have no direct bearing on modern concerns, Indology has come in for criticism. This has prompted a vigorous response from a number of eminent scholars, among them J. Bronkhorst.
Indologists typically attend conferences such as the American Association of Asian Studies, the American Oriental Society annual conference, the World Sanskrit Conference, and national-level meetings in the UK, Germany, India, Japan, France and elsewhere.
They may be members of such professional bodies as the American Oriental Society, the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland, the Société Asiatique, the Deutsche Morgenlāndische Gesellschaft and others.
List of Indologists
The following is a list of prominent academically qualified Indologists.
K N Neelakantan (1943-)- University of Calicut, Kerala, former professor of Sanskrit and Director, Adyar Library and research Centre, Madras, a well known scholar in Sanskrit and Indian philosophy.
Bannanje Govindacharya (1936– in Udupi), well-versed scholar in Tatva-vada school of philosophy, and well known scholar Vedic tradition
Heinz Bechert, Georg von Simson – Einführung in die Indologie. Stand, Methoden, Aufgaben – ISBN 3-534-05466-0.
Jean Filliozat and Louis Renou – L'inde classique – ISBN B0000DLB66.
Grundriss der Indo-Arischen Philologie und Altertumskunde, Berlin und Leipzig, Vereinigung wissenschaftlicher verleger, 1920
Bryant, Edwin. The Quest for the origins of Vedic culture. (2001) Oxford University Press
Chakrabarti, Dilip: Colonial Indology, 1997, Munshiram Manoharlal: New Delhi.
Halbfass, W. India and Europe: An Essay in Understanding. SUNY Press, Albany: 1988
Edmund Leach. "Aryan Invasions Over Four Millennia". In Culture Through Time (edited by Emiko Ohnuki-Tierney, Stanford University Press, 1990)
Gauri Viswanathan, 1989, Masks of Conquest
Pollock, Sheldon. Deep Orientalism?: Notes on Sanskrit and Power Beyond the Raj. In: Orientalism and the Postcolonial Predicament: Perspectives on South Asia, eds. Carol A. Breckenridge and Peter van der Veer. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1993.
Servan-Schreiber, Catherine & Vuddamalay, Vasoodeven (éd.). Diasporas indiennes dans la ville. In hommes et migrations n° 1268–1269 (2007)
Trautmann, Thomas. 1997. Aryans and British India, University of California Press, Berkeley.
Windisch, Ernst. Geschichte der Sanskrit-Philologie und Indischen Altertumskunde. 2 vols. Strasbourg. Trübner, K.J., 1917–1920
Zachariae, Theodor. Opera minora zur indischen Wortforschung, zur Geschichte der indischen Literatur und Kultur, zur Geschichte der Sanskritphilologie. Ed. Claus Vogel. Wiesbaden 1977, ISBN 3-515-02216-3.