Tony Joseph

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Tony Joseph (born 12 March 1963) is an Indian journalist and former editor of Businessworld magazine. He is also the author of the best-selling book Early Indians: The Story of Our Ancestors and Where We Came From (2018).


  • So in hindsight, it looks like the British archaeologist and director general of the Archaeological Survey of India between 1944 and 1948, Sir Robert Eric Mortimer Wheeler, blamed the wrong person for the disappearance of the Harappan Civilization when he wrote, ‘On circumstantial evidence, Indra stands accused!’ He was suggesting, of course, that ‘invading Aryans’ had destroyed the Harappan Civilization – something for which there is no archaeological evidence.
    • Early Indians: The Story of Our Ancestors and Where We Came From
  • Witzel quotes the surveys made by the Pakistani archaeologist Muhammad Rafiq Mughal which showed there were settlements on the Pakistani side of the Sarasvati even as late as 1500 BCE, suggesting that the river was still flowing then, well after the decline of the Harappan Civilization.
    • Early Indians: The Story of Our Ancestors and Where We Came From

Quotes about Tony Joseph[edit]

  • That is why Joseph can assert that a genetic study has disproven a linguistic theory. Strictly speaking, that alone should stamp him incompetent for the Aryan debate... Joseph is neither a linguist nor a historian nor even a geneticist, and in my quarter-century in the thick of the Aryan debate, I have never encountered his name. That need not be an obstacle, for by their own effort, people can become self-taught experts in a specialism in which they have no degree, even after a career in a different field, including business journalism. But they still have to satisfy the same criteria as the certified scholars or scientists whose equal they aspire to be. This, then, is what is missing in this article. Joseph doesn’t have a grasp of some basic issues in this debate. ... At any rate, the paper ... is altogether more nuanced and temperate than the tall and abrasive claims by Joseph... Joseph is very good at making the most of what comes under his hand, and of shading over nuanced expert findings into his own blatantly partisan narrative. However, our interest is not in finding fault with Joseph; indeed we thank him for drawing our attention to this new scientific development. Our interest is in what genetics really has to say on the Aryan origins question.... This phrase, affirming the foreign origin of Sanskrit through the Aryan Invasion Theory, is the raison d’être for this whole paragraph. Tony Joseph may not be a geneticist, nor a historian or linguist, but having been editor of the Business Standard, he is a first-class journalist. The occupational hazard of this vocation is that you have to talk about any topic that may come under your hands, often very much outside your area of expertise; such is the case in this article about the genetic evidence for an Aryan invasion. But a strength of this professional group is their mastery of simple rhetorical devices. Case in point: writing a conciliatory final paragraph full of empty phrases amounting to an all-together-now chumminess, and yet, inside it, burying a dagger aimed at your usual target: “Aryans”, Brahmins, Hindus.... By now, Tony Joseph may wish he had never written this piece. He presents a blatantly partisan interpretation of a recent research paper in a field he visibly doesn’t master. At least he could have had it proofread by a legitimate geneticist. His bias pertains to the Aryan origins question, and that too he hasn’t thought through.
    • Elst, Koenraad (2018). Still no trace of an Aryan invasion: A collection on Indo-European origins.
  • I have dealt with and demolished every single claim and point made by Tony Joseph in his book. If the discerning reader of both the books can point out some notable point that I have failed to deal with, I will be grateful to have it brought to my notice.
  • All this exemplifies the level and objectivity of Tony Joseph’s scholarship, and exposes the biased and unscientific nature of his “answer” to one of the three questions which the cover of his book suggests he is answering in the book.
    • Genetics and the Aryan Debate: “Early Indians” Tony Joseph’s Latest Assault by Shrikant G. Talageri

External links[edit]

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