NCERT Notes for Class 12 Sociology Chapter 2 CULTURAL CHANGE

Class 12 Sociology Chapter 2 CULTURAL CHANGE

NCERT Notes for Class 12 Sociology Chapter 2 CULTURAL CHANGE, (Sociology) exam are Students are taught thru NCERT books in some of the state board and CBSE Schools. As the chapter involves an end, there is an exercise provided to assist students to prepare for evaluation. Students need to clear up those exercises very well because the questions inside the very last asked from those.

Sometimes, students get stuck inside the exercises and are not able to clear up all of the questions.  To assist students, solve all of the questions, and maintain their studies without a doubt, we have provided step-by-step NCERT Notes for the students for all classes. These answers will similarly help students in scoring better marks with the assist of properly illustrated Notes as a way to similarly assist the students and answer the questions right.

NCERT Notes for Class 12 Sociology Chapter 2 CULTURAL CHANGE

Class 12 Sociology Chapter 2 CULTURAL CHANGE


  • Cultural change is a very vast area to explore.
  • It refers to changes made in cultural elements. Both, material and non-material.

This chapter looks at two related developments, both a complex product of the impact of colonial rule.

  • Social reform movement in the 19th and early 20th Centaury
  • Sanskritisation, Modernization, Secularization and Westernization

Social reform movement in the 19th and early 20th Centaury

  • Social reform movements emerged in India in 19thC.
  • Major social evils are sati, child marriage, widow remarriage and caste discrimination etc.
  • It was a creative combination of modern ideas of western liberalism and a new look on traditional literature.

Raja ram Mohan Roy

Brahma Samaj



Sir SayedAhamed Khan

Aligarh Muslim University

Sociologist SatishSaberwal elaborates upon the modern context by sketching three aspects of change in colonial India:

1- Modes of communication

  • New technologies speeded up various forms of Communication
  • Printing press, telegraph, and later the microphone, movement of people and goods through steamship and railways helped quick movement of new ideas.
  • Social reformers from Punjab and Bengal exchanged ideas with reformers from Madras and Maharashtra.
  • Keshav Chandra Sen of Bengal visited Madras in 1864. o Some of them went to other countries.

2- Forms of organisation, and

  • Modern social organisationslike the BrahmoSamaj in Bengal and AryaSamaj in Punjab were set up.
  • The All-India Muslim Ladies Conference (Anjuman-E-Khawatn-E-Islam) was founded in 1914.
  • Indian reformers debated not just in public meetings but through public media like newspapers and journals.
  • Translations of writings of social reformers from one Indian language to another took place.
  • For instance, Vishnu Shastri published a Marathi translation of Vidyasagar’s book in InduPrakashin 1868

3- The nature of ideas

  • New ideas of liberalism and freedom,
  • New ideas of homemaking and marriage,
  • New roles for mothers and daughters,
  • New ideas of selfconscious pride in culture and tradition emerged. o The value of education became very important.
  • The idea of female education was debated intensely.
  • Significantly, it was the social reformer JotibaPhulewho opened the first school for women in Pune.
  • Reformers argued that for a society to progress women have to be educated.
  • 19th century reform initiated a period of questioning, reinterpretations and both intellectual and social growth.

The varied social reform movements did have common themes. Yet there were also significant differences.

  • For some the concerns were confined to the problems that the upper caste, middle class women and men faced.
  • For others the injustices suffered by the discriminated castes were central questions.
  • For some social evils had emerged because of a decline of the true spirit of Hinduism.
  • For others caste and gender oppression was intrinsic to the religion.
  • Muslim social reformers actively debated the meaning of polygamy and purdah.
  • satiwas opposed by the BrahmoSamaj.
  • Orthodox members of the Hindu community in Bengal formed an organisation called ‘Dharma Sabha’ for abolishing sati.



  • Coined by M.N. Srinivas
  • It is the process by which a ‘low’ caste or tribe or other group takes over thecustoms, ritual, beliefs, ideology and style of life of a high and, in particular, a‘twice-born (dwija) caste’.
  • The impact of Sanskritisation is many-sided.
  • Its influence can be seen in language, literature, ideology, music, dance, drama, style of life and ritual.
  • Studies show that Sanskritisation is operated differently in different parts of the country.



    • Areas where a highly Sanskritisedcaste was dominant, the culture of the entire region underwent a certainamount of Sanskritisation.
    • In regions where the non-Sanskritic castes weredominant, it was their influence that was stronger. This can be termed theprocess of ‘de-Sanskritisation’.
  • Srinivas argued that, “the Sanskritisation of a group has usually the effect of improving its position in the local caste hierarchy.
  • India there were and still are obstacles to any easy taking over of the customs of the higher castes by the lower.

Criticism of Sanskritisation

  1. It is exaggerating social mobility
    1. The scope of ‘lower castes’ to move up the social ladder.
    2. It leads to no structural change but only positional change of some individuals.
  2. The ieology of sanskritisation accepts the ways of the ‘upper caste’ as superior and that of the ‘lower caste’ as inferior.
    1. Therefore, the desire to imitate the ‘upper caste’ is seen as natural and desirable.
  3. It justifies a model that rests on inequality and exclusion.
    1. Justify a model that rests on inequality and exclusion.
  4. It results in the adoption of upper caste rites and ritualsit leads to practices of secluding girls and women, adopting dowry practices instead of bride-price and practising caste discrimination against other groups
  5. The key characteristics of dalitculture and society are eroded.


M.N. Srinivas -“the changes brought about in Indian society and culture as a result of over 150 years of British rule, the term subsuming changes occurring at different levels, technology, institutions, ideology and values”.

Different kinds of westernisation.

  1. Emergence of a westernised sub-cultural pattern through a minority section of Indians who first came in contact with Western culture.
  2. Small sections of people who adopted western life styles or were affected by western ways of thinking.
  3. Westernisation does involve the imitation of external forms of culture.
  • West influenced Indian art and literature also.
    • Artists like Ravi Varma, Abanindranath Tagore, ChanduMenon and BankimchandraChattopadhya were all grappling with the colonial encounter.
  • M.N. Srinivassuggested that while ‘lower castes’ sought to be Sanskritised, ‘upper castes’ sought to be Westernised.


  • In the early years, modernisation referred toimprovement in technology and production processes.
  • It referred to the path of development that much of west Europe or North America has taken.

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