CBSE 12th Class History Syllabus

Course Structure

Units Topics Marks
Unit 1 - 4 Themes in Indian History Part - I 25
Unit 5- 9 Themes in Indian History Part - II 25
Unit 10 - 15 Themes in Indian History Part - III 25
Unit 16 Map Work 5
Project Work 20
Total 100

Course Syllabus

Themes in Indian History Part - I

Unit 1: The Story of the First Cities: Harappan Archaeology

  • Broad overview − Early urban centres.
  • Story of discovery − Harappan civilization
  • Excerpt − Archaeological report on a major site
  • Discussion − How it has been utilized by archaeologists/historians

Unit 2: Political and Economic History: How Inscriptions tell a story

  • Broad overview −
    • Political and economic history from the Mauryan to the Gupta period
  • Story of discovery −
    • Inscriptions and the decipherment of the script
    • Shifts in the understanding of political and economic history
  • Excerpt −
    • Asokan inscription
    • Gupta period land grant
  • Discussion −
    • Interpretation of inscriptions by historians

Unit 3: Social Histories: Using the Mahabharata

  • Broad overview −

    • Issues in social history

    • Including caste

    • Class

    • Kinship

    • Gender

  • Story of discovery −

    • Transmission and publications of the Mahabharata

  • Excerpt − From the Mahabharata, illustrating how it has been used by historians

  • Discussion − Other sources for reconstructing social history

Unit 4: A History of Buddhism: Sanchi Stupa

  • Broad overview −

    • A brief review of religious histories of Vedic religion, Jainism, Vaisnavism, Saivism

    • Focus on Buddhism

  • Story of discovery − Sanchi stupa

  • Excerpt − Reproduction of sculptures from Sanchi

  • Discussion − Ways in which sculpture has been interpreted by historians, other sources for reconstructing the history of Buddhism

Themes in Indian History Part - II

Unit 5: Agrarian Relations: The Ain-i- Akbari

  • Broad overview −
    • Structure of agrarian relations in the 16th and 17th centuries
    • Patterns of change over the period
  • Story of Discovery: Account of the compilation and translation of Ain-i-Akbari
  • Excerpt − From the Ain-i-Akbari
  • Discussion − Ways in which historians have used the text to reconstruct history

Unit 6: The Mughal Court: Reconstructing Histories through Chronicles

  • Broad overview −

    • Outline of political history 15th-17th centuries

    • Discussion of the Mughal court and politics

  • Story of Discovery: Account of the production of court chronicles, and their subsequent translation and transmission

  • Excerpts: From the Akbarnama and Padshahnama

  • Discussion: Ways in which historians have used the texts to reconstruct political histories

Unit 7: New Architecture: Hampi

  • Broad overview −

    • Outline of new buildings during Vijayanagar period-temples, forts, irrigation facilities.

    • Relationship between architecture and the political system

  • Story of Discovery − Account of how Hampi was found

  • Excerpt − Visuals of buildings at Hampi

  • Discussion − Ways in which historians have analyzed and interpreted these structures

Unit 8: Religious Histories: The Bhakti-Sufi Tradition

  • Broad overview −
    • Outline of religious developments during this period
    • Ideas and practices of the Bhakti-Sufi saints
  • Story of Transmission − How Bhakti-Sufi compositions have been preserved
  • Excerpt − Extracts from selected Bhakti-Sufi works
  • Discussion − Ways in which these have been interpreted by historians

Unit 9: Medieval Society through Travelers' Accounts

  • Broad overview −

    • Outline of social and cultural life as they appear in travelers' accounts

  • Story of their writings − A discussion of where they travelled, why they travelled, what they wrote, and for whom they wrote

  • Excerpts − From Alberuni, Ibn Batuta, Bernier

  • Discussion − What these travel accounts can tell us and how they have been interpreted by historians

Themes in Indian History Part - III

Unit 10: Colonialism and Rural Society: Evidence from Official Reports

  • Broad overview −

    • Life of zamindars, peasants and artisans in the late 18th century

    • East India Company, revenue settlements and surveys

    • Changes over the nineteenth century

  • Story of official records − An account of why official investigations into rural societies were undertaken and the types of records and reports produced

  • Excerpts − From Firminger's Fifth Report, Accounts of Frances BuchananHamilton, and Deccan Riots Report

  • Discussion − What the official records tell and do not tell, and how they have been used by historians

Unit 11: Representations of 1857

  • Broad overview −

    • The events of 1857-58.

    • How these events were recorded and narrated?

  • Focus: Lucknow

  • Excerpts −

    • Pictures of 1857

    • Extracts from contemporary accounts

  • Discussion − How the pictures of 1857 shaped British opinion of what had happened

Unit 12: Colonialism and Indian Towns: Town Plans and Municipal Reports

  • Broad overview −

    • The growth of Mumbai, Chennai, hill stations and cantonments in the 18th and 19th centuries

  • Excerpts −

    • Photographs and paintings

    • Plans of cities

    • Extract from town plan reports

    • Focus on Kolkata town planning

  • Discussion − How the above sources can be used to reconstruct the history of towns. What these sources do not reveal

Unit 13: Mahatma Gandhi through Contemporary Eyes

  • Broad overview −

    • The Nationalist Movement 1918 - 1948

    • The nature of Gandhian politics and leadership

  • Focus − Mahatma Gandhi in 1931

  • Excerpts − Reports from English and Indian language newspapers and other contemporary writings

  • Discussion − How newspapers can be a source of history

Unit 14: Partition through Oral Sources

  • Broad overview −

    • The history of the 1940s

    • Nationalism, Communalism and Partition

  • Focus − Punjab and Bengal

  • Excerpts − Oral testimonies of those who experienced partition

  • Discussion − Ways in which these have been analyzed to reconstruct the history of the event

Unit 15: The Making of the Constitution

  • Broad overview −
    • Independence and the new nation state
    • The making of the Constitution
  • Focus − The Constitutional Assembly debates
  • Excerpts − From the debates
  • Discussion − What such debates reveal and how they can be analyzed

Unit 16: Map Works

  • On Units 1 to 15

Project Work

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