Please refer to Indian sociologists Class 11 Sociology notes and questions with solutions below. These revision notes and important examination questions have been prepared based on the latest Sociology books for Class 11. You can go through the questions and solutions below which will help you to get better marks in your examinations.
Class 11 Sociology Indian sociologists Notes and Questions
It was during the British period study of society as a science gained importance. The formal university teaching of Sociology began in1919 at the University of Bombay.
I. G. S. Ghurye
G. S. Ghurye the founder of institutionalized sociology in India. He headed India’s very first post-graduate teaching department of Sociology at Bombay University (35 years). He also founded the Indian Sociological Society and its journal Sociological Bulletin.
Caste and Race
In his book ‘Caste and Race in India’ (1932), Ghurye criticized all the dominant theories about the relationship between race and caste.
G. S. Ghurye- Herbert Risley- Debate on Caste and Race
Herbert Risley- Caste and Race
Herbert Risley, a British colonial official believed that India is unique ‘laboratory’ for studying the evolution of races. Caste must have originated from race. The higher castes had Indo-Aryan racial traits, while the lower castes seemed to belong to non-Aryan aboriginal, Mongoloid or other racial groups. On the basis of physical traits, Risley suggested that the lower castes were the original aboriginal inhabitants of India. They had been subjugated by an Aryan people who had come from elsewhere and settled in India.
Ghurye – Caste and Race
The basic argument of Risley is only partially correct. Ghurye believed that Risley’s thesis (the upper castes are Aryans and the lower castes are non-Aryans) was broadly true only for northern India. In other parts of India except the Indo-Gangetic plain, different racial groups had been mixing with each other for a very long time. Thus, ‘racial purity’ had been preserved due to the prohibition on inter-marriage only in north India.
Ghurye: Definition of Caste
– Ghurye’s definition of caste emphasizes six features.
1. Segmental division.
2. Hierarchical division.
3. Restrictions on social interaction
4. Differential rights and duties
5. Restriction on the choice of occupation
6. Strict restrictions on marriage.
II. D. P. Mukerji
D. P. Mukerji was strongly influenced by Marxism. He considered Marxism as a method of social analysis than as a political programme for action. His ‘Introduction to Indian Music’ is a pioneering work, considered a classic in its genre.
D.P. Mukerji on Tradition and Change
The first duty of an Indian sociologist to study the social traditions of India. Tradition was a living tradition, maintaining its links with the past, but also adapting to the present and thus evolving over time. There were three principles of change recognised in Indian traditions, namely; shruti, smriti and anubhava. Anubhava or personal experience is the revolutionary
principle. However, in the Indian context personal experience soon flowered into collective experience. The high traditions were centred in smriti and sruti. But they were challenged by the collective experience of groups and sects. Example: Bhakti movement, Sufism. In the Indian context, conflict and rebellion rise through collective experiences. The pressure of conflict produces change in the tradition without breaking it. Tradition has the capacity to bring matters into the former structure.
III. A. R. Desai
A.R. Desai was a life-long Marxist. His thesis was published in 1948 as ‘The Social Background of Indian Nationalism’, which is probably his best known work. In this book, Desai made a Marxist analysis of Indian nationalism.
Features of Welfare State
In an essay called ‘The myth of the welfare state’, Desai provides a detailed critique of the state and points to it many shortcomings. Desai identifies the following unique features of the welfare state:
1. A welfare state is a positive state.
2. The welfare state is a democratic state.
3. A welfare state involves a mixed economy.
Criteria to Measure the Performance of the Welfare State
Desai suggests some criteria to measure the performance of the welfare state. They are:
1. The welfare state should ensure freedom from poverty, social discrimination and security for all its citizens.
2. The welfare state should remove inequalities of income by redistributing income from rich to poor and by preventing the concentration of wealth.
3. The welfare state should transform the economy in such a way that the capitalist profit motive is made subservient to the real needs of the community.
4. The welfare state should ensure stable development.
5. The welfare state should provide employment for all.
Using these criteria, Desai examined the performance of Britain, the USA and European countries. He found that their claims as welfare states are largely exaggerated. Based on these arguments, Desai concludes that the notion of the welfare state is a myth. He openly criticized the shortcomings of Communist states. He also pointed out the significance of democracy in communism.
IV. M. N. Srinivas
M.N. Srinivas was the best known Indian sociologist of the post-independence era. Srinivas was a student of Ghurye’s at Bombay. His doctoral dissertation was published as ‘Religion and Society among the Coorgs of South India’.
M. N. Srinivas on the Village
Srinivas’ writings on the village were of two broad types.
1. Ethnographic accounts of fieldwork done in villages or discussions of such accounts.
2. Historical and conceptual discussions about the Indian village as a unit of social analysis.
M. N. Srinivas, Louis Dumont- Debate on Village Society
Louis Dumont- Village Society
The social institutions like caste were more important than a village. Villages may live or die, and people may move from one village to another. But their social institutions, like caste or religion, follow them and go with them wherever they go. It would be misleading to give much importance to the village as a category.
M. N. Srinivas- Village Society
Srinivas rejected this view of Dumont. He believed that the village was a relevant social entity. Historical evidence showed that villages had served as a unifying force. The village unity was very significant in rural social life. Using historical and sociological evidence, he proved that the village had undergone considerable changes.