Aryan race

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The Aryan race is an obsolete historical race concept which emerged in the late 19th-century to describe people of Proto-Indo-European heritage as a racial grouping. Anthropological, historical and archaeological evidence does not support the validity of this concept.


  • The word ariane, Aryan, had taken on an equally bizarre meaning when applied to Fascist Italy: a swarthy Southern Catholic was Aryan whereas a blond and blue-eyed Milanese Jew was not. . . . Fascist words certainly pushed [the] ridiculous to the limit: one could become Aryan, which would seem to be biologically impossible. Children of mixed marriages who had been baptized by a certain time were officially Aryan . . . But trying to be Aryan or discriminated had a price . . . The idea of an Italian Aryan race, already laughable was rendered more absurd by the possibility of being Aryanized. All one had to do was prove that one's father was not Jewish but Aryan and one did that by claiming that one was born as a result of one's mother's adultery.
    • Kate Cohen, The Neppi Modona Diaries: Reading Jewish Survival Through My Italian Family By Kate Cohen . quoted from Malhotra, R., Nīlakantan, A. (Princeton, N.J.). (2011). Breaking India: Western interventions in Dravidian and Dalit faultlines
  • The prophecy which the Führer made about them for having brought on a new world war is beginning to come true in a most terrible manner. One must not be sentimental in these matters. If we did not fight the Jews, they would destroy us. It's a life-and-death struggle between the Aryan race and the Jewish bacillus.
  • Both Gobineau and Chamberlain transformed the Aryan concept, which had its humble origins in philological research conducted by Jones in Calcutta at the end of the eighteenth century, into the political and racial doctrines of Adolf Hitler's Third Reich.
    • Kenneth A.R. Kennedy, quoted from Malhotra, R., Nīlakantan, A. (Princeton, N.J.). (2011). Breaking India: Western interventions in Dravidian and Dalit faultlines Kennedy, Kenneth A.R. ‘Have Aryans been identified in the prehistoric skeletal record from South Asia?’ Vol. 1, in The Indo-Aryans of ancient South Asia: Language, material culture and ethnicity Vol 1 of Indian philology and South Asian studies , by Kenneth A.R. Kennedy. Walter de Gruyter, 1995.
  • The invention of an Aryan race in nineteenth century Europe was to have, as we all know, far-reaching consequences on world history. Its application to European societies culminated in the ideology of Nazi Germany. Another sequel was that it became foundational to the interpretation of early Indian history and there have been attempts at a literal application of the theory to Indian society. Some European scholars now describe it as a nineteenth century myth. But some contemporary Indian political ideologies seem determined to renew its life. In this they are assisted by those who still carry the imprint of this nineteenth century theory and treat it as central to the question of Indian identity. With the widespread discussion on 'Aryan origins' in the print media and the controversy over its treatment in school textbooks, it has become the subject of a larger debate in terms of its ideological underpinnings rather than merely the differing readings among archaeologists and historians.

External links[edit]

Encyclopedic article on Aryan race on Wikipedia