The Story of India

Season 1
 (1,434)8.62009TV-PG
Michael Wood's fascinating journey through the history of the Indian subcontinent chronicles the incredible richness and diversity of its peoples, cultures and landscapes.
Genres
DocumentarySpecial Interest
Subtitles
English [CC]
Audio languages
English

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  1. 1. Beginnings
    January 5, 2009
    55min
    TV-PG
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Beginning with the first human migrations out of Africa, host Michael Wood takes viewers from the tropical backwaters of South India to lost ancient cities in Pakistan -- the scene of India's first civilization.
  2. 2. The Power of Ideas
    January 5, 2009
    55min
    TV-PG
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Michael Wood's epic series moves into the revolutionary years after 500 BC -- the Age of the Buddha.
  3. 3. Spice Routes and Silk Roads
    January 12, 2009
    55min
    TV-PG
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Michael Wood takes viewers to India in the days of the Roman Empire.
  4. 4. Ages of Gold
    January 12, 2009
    55min
    TV-PG
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Reaching the time of the Fall of Rome in the West, Michael Wood seeks out the amazing achievements of India's golden age from 300 to 1000 AD.
  5. 5. The Meeting of Two Oceans
    January 19, 2009
    55min
    TV-PG
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    This episode tells the epic story of possibly the greatest of all clashes of civilization -- the coming of Islam to the Indian subcontinent. The story culminates in one of the most glamorous ages of world civilization -- the Moghul Empire.
  6. 6. Freedom
    January 19, 2009
    55min
    TV-PG
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Michael Wood's "10,000-year epic" reaches the time of the British occupation of India -- the Raj -- and India's struggle for freedom.

More details

Directors
Jeremy Jeffs
Season year
2009
Network
PBS
Content advisory
Drug usefoul languageviolence
Purchase rights
Stream instantly Details
Format
Prime Video (streaming online video)
Devices
Available to watch on supported devices

Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

1434 global ratings

  1. 77% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 13% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 5% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 3% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 2% of reviews have 1 stars

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Top reviews from the United States

J. J. SartoriReviewed in the United States on April 6, 2019
4.0 out of 5 starsGood but seriously incomplete!
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I liked the DVD segmented format. It is hard to absorb all the factual and implied information in one long gulp! I also liked the interspersion of scholars and, near the end, eye witness accounts. I do not agree that the British got kid-glove treatment in the presentation. While I am not a history expert I think some glaring omissions concerning India's history and culture were allowed. The practice of "suttee" was mentioned once, as an aside comment , but never discussed. Burning widows alive with their dead husbands might be considered a significant cultural attribute! Also the rise and destruction of the "thugee" cult of murderers deserves some mention, maybe? Both actions were strongly crushed by the British army! Some credit is due! The British were exploiters and cruel but despite that, a lot of good things were left behind. Mass education was improved. Railroads were built. Opportunities for work and advancement were made available in other British colonies as well. I am not an Anglophile but I believe fair and balanced presentations are essential. Too much scope for a short series... maybe? Program really deserves a 3.5 rating!
11 people found this helpful
CuriousStrangerReviewed in the United States on January 6, 2017
5.0 out of 5 starsAn engaging look at India that is refreshingly not tinted by the biases of the filmmaker
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Depicting The story of India in film, is an inherently complex endeavour owing to its vastness in time, diversity of peoples and cultures and the political sensitivities involved in any of its portrayal. Further, colonial historical discourses over the past centuries have distorted vast swathes of this history, making even many Indians confused as to the historicity of their land and culture. Many attempts at communicating indian history have suffered from the biases of the filmmaker.

However this documentary stands out as one that transcends all this. The narrative is compelling, refreshingly unbiased and the result is a visually stunning and though provoking look at one of the most continuously populated regions on earth.
28 people found this helpful
SundarReviewed in the United States on December 27, 2017
5.0 out of 5 starsI thoroughly enjoyed watching all the episodes
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I thoroughly enjoyed watching all the episodes. Though I was born and raised in India, I did not know many of the wonderful details that were told in this story about India. I am a bit ashamed that it took a fantastic and objective Englishman to narrate the story of India tracing back to the early civilizations. I am truly grateful to Michael Wood for producing and narrating this beautiful story of India. Great job Michael. It gave me a lesson on the cultural diversity, strength and heritage of India. Unlike many documentaries about India, this one ends on a very positive and optimistic note which is very refresing.
14 people found this helpful
Kindle CustomerReviewed in the United States on April 22, 2016
5.0 out of 5 starsThis is the second time I have watched this wonderful series. It provides a broad-stroke introduction to history ...
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This is the second time I have watched this wonderful series. It provides a broad-stroke introduction to history and to the breadth of India's diverse cultures and geography. It is inspiring, fascinating, and entertaining. I highly recommend it. The host is infectiously enthusiastic, and his participation in festivals, his entry into large gatherings, talking with Indians of all backgrounds, engaging with Pakistani citizens, is delightful.
8 people found this helpful
Both Professional and FunReviewed in the United States on December 11, 2016
5.0 out of 5 starsVery Informative. Engages the Senses
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This is a documentary series of 1 hour long episodes, about India all the way from the beginning to present day. You see people, places, hear the stories of key moments and evidence, and this combination engages both the logical and emotional senses. I work with many Indian people and was curious to learn more about the culture, so I originally watched the series last year. To prepare for my first-ever trip to India, I decided to purchase the series and watch it again
7 people found this helpful
Colleen MacmillanReviewed in the United States on October 8, 2017
5.0 out of 5 starsBeautifully presented. Information regarding the birth chart and date ...
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Beautifully presented. Information regarding the birth chart and date of birth of King Akbar was unusual, as historically it is noted to be ten days earlier than the information given in the video. However, the video provides a very positive and entrancing perspective on this vibrant nation and its contributions throughout time to the world.
2 people found this helpful
Moses RiveraReviewed in the United States on February 3, 2016
5.0 out of 5 starsWe loved it!
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My wife and I are so glad to have discovered this short gem of a series! We're both relatively new to Indian history/culture but from what we can see most people seem to agree that this series ROCKS. It's seven years old now but the information still seems accurate (based on the great reviews and my own limited knowledge of history) and you can really feel Michael's enthusiasm and passion for India's history. I definitely recommend this (only 6 hour-long episodes) to any documentary/history/India-enthusiast.
5 people found this helpful
dbwReviewed in the United States on June 28, 2016
5.0 out of 5 starsThe India you've never seen or known
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This is one of the best histories of India and the people of India that I have seen, including the cruel treatment by the British Commonwealth of the peoples of India, but also going way back into the earlier history of India. This should be interesting even to those who currently have no interest in India, especially considering what a huge percentage of the world lives in India.
6 people found this helpful
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