One of the signs of the advent of a ‘new Indology’ is a recent international conference held on 21-22 February 2009, at the Loyola Marymount University (Los Angeles) entitled “The Sindhu-Sarasvati Valley Civilizations: A Reappraisal” (link and image above), with some of the most important names of the Indian archaeology from India and the USA: S.R. Rao, R.S. Bisht, Kenoyer and Shaffer. Moreover, there was an expert of the question of the Aryan invasion like E. Bryant and also a Greek scholar, Kazanas, one of the few Westerners criticizing the invasion theory and the official chronology of the Vedas.
What is particularly interesting in this conference is its opening to positions regarded as heretical by the academic establishment (also in the US); then it gives some hope for an authentic debate and for the Great Transition which various hints suggest as being underway: from the old paradigm to a new one, no more based on the aprioristic theory of the Aryan invasion or migration into India.
(On the base of this conference a volume is going to be published on the Sindhu-Sarasvati civilization, where also a contribution of mine - dealing with a new chronology of the Rigveda and a comparison between archaeology and Indian historical tradition - has been unexpectedly invited; it is already completed and accepted, now waiting for the editing)
One of the driving forces of the Transition is surely Koenraad Elst, Belgian scholar who has written, inter alia, Update on the Aryan Invasion Debate, a book which I found in the library of the “Scuola Normale Superiore” of Pisa six years ago, and which opened to me a new world in the field of South Asia, leading to a real conversion from the ‘invasionism’ to a new perspective. He has a blog where I found also the recension of the last book of Talageri, (http://koenraadelst.blogspot.com/2009/01/great-book-about-great-book.html) one of the most militant authors of the new Indian wave of ‘indigenism’ or OIT (Out of India Theory, in the synthetic label dear to Elst), that is the theory supporting the Indian origin of all the Indo-European peoples. I bought the book and read it (almost totally…) and it is really more sophisticate than the previous ones, but similar to his The Rigveda: A Historical Analysis (Delhi 2000). One of the pros of Talageri is his systematic method, and his results in the comparison of Rigveda and Avesta are quite remarkable, but I do not agree with all his views (particularly the identity Anu-Iranians and Druhyu-Europeans). Anyway, his engagement in the research of the historical truth as an outsider (he has no academic training) should be taken into account by a new Indology.