The Indian Administrative Service exam is the toughest exam in India. So, it requires lots of preparation. Aspirants have to do a deep study on every subject. There’s no short-cut for it. And History is one of the most important subjects in the IAS exam. However, check the following article. Because we are going to tell you about the best history books for UPSC. Indian, Spectrum, and Ancient Indian History Books are also included here. You can find Best Books on Indian History in this article.
- History Syllabus in IAS Exam
- Importance of Best Books on Indian History
- Best Books on Indian History That You Should Know
- FAQs That People Ask About Best Books On Indian History
- Editor's Note | Best History Books for UPSC
History Syllabus in IAS Exam
Well, we will dive into the list of best books on Indian history later. But, let me tell you a bit about the syllabus. Not to mention, UPSC or IAS exam has a vast syllabus. Most of the student gets scared after seeing it. Although, there is no need to be afraid. All you have to do is to know the syllabus very well. Then, you can read ancient Indian history books and Spectrum history book likewise. However, remember unnecessary materials will make it difficult, nothing else.
As you know both IAS Prelims and Mains have history in the syllabus. It is also one of the optional subjects too. Now take a look at the syllabus. Furthermore, you will know what you have to read.
For Paper – I
- Indus Valley Civilization, Pre-history and Proto-history
- Megalithic Cultures, Archeological Sources
- Mauryan Empire and Post-Mauryan Period
- Aryans and Vedic Period, Period of Mahajanapadas
- South India & Early State and Society in Eastern India
- From Gupta to Vardhan Era and Regional State
- Early Indian Cultural History
- India’s cultural traditions and Early Medieval India (750-1200)
- The thirteenth and fourteenth century: Delhi Sultanate, Society, culture, and economy
- Fifteenth and sixteenth century – Society and culture
- Society and culture in the sixteenth and seventeenth century
- Mughal empire: Akbar and its culture
- The eighteenth-century
For Paper – II
- European penetration, British Expansion, and early British raj in India
- Economic impact, social, and cultural development because of British rules
- India response and social & religious movement in Bengal to the British raj
- Reasons behind the formation of Indian Nationalism
- The Revolutionary National movements and constitutional development (1858-1935)
- The Muslim League, Neheru’s Foreign Policy (1947-64)
- Caste System, political changes, and the birth of modern politics
- Imperialism, Industrialism, and Colonialism
- World wars and it’s after effect, end of colonial rule
- Birth of Unipolar world
Well, this is pretty much everything you need. It’s the gist of the whole history syllabus. The following list contains the best History books for UPSC. Moreover, you will get to know about the history books here. Also, this list includes Indian, ancient Indian history books, and Spectrum history book too.
Importance of Best Books on Indian History
History has an important role in the exam. Candidates need to know our own country’s past. Otherwise, how can they be eligible for such a prestigious post like IAS? Similarly, India has such an influential past that we all should know. As you know, history is also on the list of the optional subjects in the IAS exam. So, it is a good option to know as much as you can. Besides, the Ancient Indian and Indian history books are interesting too. You can easily obtain a good mark in this transparent subject. On the contrary, Aspirants won’t have to worry about technical logic.
Best Books on Indian History That You Should Know
There’s a whole lot of materials about Indian and ancient Indian history books. Choosing the best books on Indian history is indeed a difficult job. But, don’t worry. We’ve made it simple for you. We can divide these books into three categories. They are Ancient Indian, Modern Indian, and Medieval Indian History. Here is a list of the best history books for UPSC. It can help you to choose the right one.
History Books for IAS Prelims
Every IAS aspirant knows the importance of NCERT books. That’s why NCERT history books play the most significant role in the Prelims.
- Our Past – Class VI
- Our Past I – Class VII
- Part II and III of Our Past – Class VIII
- India and the Contemporary World I and II – Class IX
- Themes In World History – Class X
- Living Crafts Traditions of India, An Introduction to Indian Art – Class XI
- Craft Tradition of India – Class XI
- Themes In World History I, II & III – Class XII
- India’s Ancient Past by RS Sharma
- A History of Medieval India by Satish Chandra
- History of the World part 1 & 2 by Arjun Dev
- History of Modern India by Bipan Chandra.
“A Brief History of Modern India” is also an important book. Not to mention, it’s a Spectrum history book.
Indian and Ancient Indian Best History Books (IAS Mains)
Best history books for IAS are not limited within NCERTs. Therefore, take a look at these books.
- India’s Struggle for Independence and History of Modern India – Bipan Chandra
- Indian Art and Culture – Nitin Singhania
- Mastering Modern World History – Norman Lowe
- History of Modern World – written by Jain and Mathur
- India After Gandhi – Ramchandra Guha
- India’s Ancient Past – RS Sharma
- From Plassey to Partition
- The Wonder That Was India – A. L. Basham
Alongside with Spectrum history book, these are the best history books for IAS exam.
Best Books on Indian History for History optional
As I said before, it is a good thing to choose history as an option subject. However, we have some books that you can try. Have a quick check.
- The Penguin History of Early India – written by Romila Thapar
- A New Look at Modern Indian History – written by B L Grover and Alka Mehta
- Age of Revolution (1789-1848) – Eric Hobsbawm
- India’s Ancient Past – R. S. Sharma
- Age of Capital (1848-1875): History of Civilization – written by Eric Hobsbawm
- Age Of Empires, Capital, and Revolution – written by E.J. Hobsbawm
- Europe Since 1815 – W.C. Craig
- Europe Since 1870 – James Joll
- Industry and Empires – E.J. Hobsbawm
- Europe Since Napoleon – David Thompson
- The Mainstream of Civilization – written by Strayer, Gatzke, and Harbison
- The Social Basis of Democracy & Dictatorship – written by B.J. Moore
- NCERT History books by Arjun dev, Bipan Chandra, and Satish Chandra.
Well, these are the all history books for IAS. Further, candidates can easily find every Indian and ancient Indian History books here. This list has the best books on Indian history. We listed European History also. Again, keep in mind that you have to read in detail. Because Prelims in Objective type while Mains is subjective type. So, you can’t leave any topic untouched. I am sure that the listed best history books for UPSC will help you to cover everything in time.
FAQs That People Ask About Best Books On Indian History
Well, that’s a good question though. Let me clear it. Subjects like science have lots of logic and scientific theories. But the problem is you can’t mess with these theories. On the other hand, History is a descriptive subject. So, all you need to do is memorize everything in detail. That’s why it’s a good option.
The main reason for it is its syllabus. Besides, History syllabus of IAS always overlap with each other. So, preparing for one exam helps the next exam automatically. No need to say, it saves a lot of time. And, time management is crucial for UPSC exam.
Of course not! NCERT History books are only enough for IAS Prelims. As for Mains and Optional, there are plenty of best books on Indian History. For example, Spectrum History book. All left to do is look for them carefully. In spite of skipping anything, go through all.
Certainly!! Firstly, it is in the IAS syllabus. Secondly, you have to know about important world histories. Being an IAS officer is a prestigious position to hold. Successful aspirants will have to deal with international issues later.
As you know, there is a saying that history repeats itself. So, make notes according to it. It’s a vast syllabus. Don’t leave any topic untouched. Similarly, try to make notes on your own. It’ll be much easy to understand. Otherwise, you may lose track. The list of best history books for UPSC will help.
Editor’s Note | Best History Books for UPSC
In the end, don’t even think about slacking off. UPSC is a real hard shell to crack. In order to help you, we made this list of the Best Books on Indian history. You can find all Indian, ancient Indian, and Spectrum history books in one place. So, the only task that is left is study. Even if it seems tough, History can bring a good mark in the exam. Best History books for UPSC will give a jump start. Finally, give your best shot in the preparation.