This article discusses the Indus Valley Civilization as a peaceful utopia until it collapsed due to environmental or other crisis — The Last Kaurava (The Making of Bhishma) is based on exactly that hypothesis. In addition, the Appendix notes covers the technology of that period — high quality standardization, flat hierarchy, absence of a military, preponderance of trade, highly sophisticated, and wealthy through trade.
The attached New Scientist article presents what is known along with speculations, some that are in line with my own speculations. The matter is still unsettled and there is reason to believe that it will not be easily resolved given the nature of the available information.
I call my book “a novel” and use the word “speculation” for these elements because I do not have physical evidence for these claims. Instead, a mix of reading, analysis, understanding of technology, went into assessing the material conditions of the age. In addition, I used the existing documents, the Puranas and the Mahabharata, and chose to re-interpret them in the light of the known archaeological facts. So, the portrayal of women of the original Mahabharata is mixed — even strong women act weak and get their way by nagging or by expressing viewpoints from a later era. My portrayal builds on my assertion that they were all Matriarchs of their settlements, rulers in their own right, and acted with their own power and not through their men.
My novel speculates about the life of the people in the civilisation, filling in details that the article mentions in passing as unknown.