M.N. Srinivas : Village

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M.N. Srinivas : Village


Indian sociologist Mysore Narasimhachar Srinivas (M. N. Srinivas: M. N. Srinivas) has made a special contribution in the development of sociological concepts and processes. They helped to prepare the new agenda of sociology in the second half of the twentieth century. He is known as the best Indian sociologist of independent India. After the first generation of sociologists and anthropologists like GS Ghurye, NK Bose, D.P.Mookerjee, the name of Mysore Narasimhachar Srinivas is prominent among the sociologists who are most discussed in the country and abroad. His much talked concept of Sanskritization made him famous all over the world. His P-H. D . The research dissertation was published in the name of ‘Religion and Society among the Kurgas of South India’. This book increased the respect of Srinivas all over the world.



Writing work of Shri Niwas Srinivas did writing work on various aspects of Indian society and society. He became very famous for his writings on religion, rural community, caste and social. He was greatly influenced by Radcliffe-Brown’s concept of social structure. Radcliffe-Brown had been his teacher at Oxford. His writings are based on extensive field work done in South India. , He not only highlighted the practical and structural aspects of caste and religion in the study, but also underlined the active role of the caste system in the rural system. To understand the reality of inter-caste relations and to show their activism, he coined some specific terms as theoretic tools like dominant caste, Sanskritization, westernization, secularization etc. He used the concept of dominant caste in the study of authority relations at the village level. did .



M-N-Srinivas was born on 16 November 1916 in Mysore in a Iyengar Brahmin family. His father was a landlord and was working in the Energy and Electricity Department of Mysore. Srinivas’s early education took place in Mysore State. From the very beginning he was known as a meritorious student. University education took place in Bombay, where his Guruji. s . Were complete. In 1942, his book ‘Marriage and Family among the Kurgas’ was published as a postgraduate research subject. In 1944 P-H. D research work done under the direction of Ghurye from Bombay University. This dissertation was published in the form of a book in 1952 under the name “Religion and Society among the Kurgas of South India”. This book brought him respect all over the world. D in Social Anthropology from Oxford in 1947. Back to India. In 1948, he was appointed as the spokesperson of Indian Sociology at Oxford. He did fieldwork in Rampura in 1948, under which he studied the social structure of Rampura village in Mysore. In 1951, he was appointed as Professor at Maharaja Sayajirao University, Baroda. and established the Department of Sociology. Appointed as Professor in the Delhi School of Economics in 1959 and the Department of Sociology was established. In 1971 became the co-founder of the Bangalore-based Institute of Social and Economic Change. There was a complaint that most of his time is spent in building institutions. He has very little time left for research work. Despite this, Srinivas has done some subjects – caste, modernization and other processes of social change. Did important work on women and rural society etc. Srinivas established his international identity and Indian sociology on the world map. He prepared a new generation of society, who were established as the stalwarts of sociology. He died on 30 November 1999 i.e. at the age of 83. His interest remained in the Indian village and rural society throughout his life.


 Thesis on the topic “Religion and Society among the Coorgs of South India” for D.Phil. Wrote which was published in the form of a book in 1952 AD. In this book itself, he has used the concept of ‘Sanskritisation’ for the first time. Following are the major works of Srinivas


( 1 ) Marriage and Family in Mysore ( 1942 ) ;

 ( 2 ) Religion and Society Among The Coorgs of South India ( 1952 ) ;

( 3 ) India’s Village ( edited.1955 ) ;

 ( 4 ) Caste in Modern India and Other Essays ( 1962 ) ;

( 5 ) Social Change in Modern India ( 1966 ) ;

 ( 6 ) India : Social Structure ( 1969 ) ;

( 7 ) Itineries of an Indian Social Anthropologist (1973 ) ;


( 8 ) The Remembered Village ( 1976 ) :

( 9 ) Nation – building in Independent India ( 1976 ) ;

(10) Dimensions of Social Change in India (edited, 1977);

 ( 11 ) My Baroda Days ( 1981 ) ;

(12 ) The Dominant Caste and Other Essays ( 1986 ) :

 ( 13 ) The Cohesive Role of Sanskritization ( 1989 ) ;

 ( 14 ) On Living in a Revolution and Other Essays ( 1992 ) ;

 ( 15 ) Sociology in Delhi ( 1993 ) ;

( 16 ) Village , Caste , Gender and Method ( 1996 ) ; And

( 17 ) Indian Society Through Personal Writings ( 1996 ) .



M.N. Srinivas’s thoughts on the village


  1. Srinivas on the village )


 M . N. Srinivas’s interest remained special in Indian village and rural society. The experience of working in the village proved to be important for his business and intellectual development. He s. C- Dube and D. N. Together with scholars like Majumdar, he made rural studies influential at that time in Indian sociology. M . N. Srinivas believed that village is an essential social identity. History is witness that villages have made their own identity and rural integration is very important in rural social life. Srinivas criticized the British administrators and anthropologists who portrayed the Indian village as a stable, self-sufficient, small republic. Srinivas has shown through historical and social evidence that significant changes have taken place in the villages. He believed that the village never remained as a self-sufficient unit. They were connected at the regional level by various types of economic, social and political relations. M . N. Srinivas studied the social structure of Rampura village in Mysore in 1948. At that time the population of that village was 1523. There were 19 Hindu castes and Muslims living in the village. Half of Rampura was under agriculture. Okaliga was the largest landowner there. Most of the castes carried on their traditional occupation. Yet the business was beginning to change. Brahmins started doing agriculture. People from the lower castes started running shops, opening rice mills and working in motors. The shepherds started agriculture work leaving sheep rearing and blanket weaving.


The fishermen used to do agriculture instead of fishing. Thus change and flexibility was visible in the traditional occupation of the castes of Rampura. Politically, Rampura was an autonomous unit. The disputes in the village were settled by the elders of the Prabhu caste. The Okkalinga caste in Rampura remained a sovereign caste because of its numerical, power and economic and political influence. Most of the residents of Rampura village observed Hindu festivals. The people of this village used to worship in the temple of Mari Devi. Traditionally, Brahmins and Lingayats mainly worked as priests and priests. Rampura village was mainly divided into three levels. At the top were Brahmins, Lingayats and Kshatriya castes. Teli, barber, potter, shepherd and fisherman castes were in second place. The untouchable castes were at a low level. The relations of food, drink, occupation and social contact between different castes were influenced by caste beliefs. Despite this, all people were bound by a sense of community because of common experiences. Thus the rural studies of M-N-Srinivas benefits Indian sociology in many ways. First, it provided an opportunity to introduce the method to ethnological research. Second, it gave an eye-opening view of the rapid social change taking place in Indian villages. Third, urban Indian builders could infer what was happening in the interior of India. Fourth, it can be made useful for the society moving towards modernity. M . The mention of three concepts is particularly important during N-Srinivas’s rural studies. These are – Sanskritization, Westernization and Prabhu caste.






The concept called Sanskritization was used to describe the process of cultural mobility in the Indian social structure. The famous Indian sociologist Prof. M. Shree Niwas first used this concept in his analysis of the social and religious life of the Coorg people of South India. While studying the Coorg people in Mysore, Prof. M. S. Sri Niwas found that the lower caste people were able to follow certain customs to the Brahmins and to give up some of their own customs like eating meat, using alcohol and animal sacrifice etc. were engaged. They were doing everything so that their position in the system of caste-edition could be elevated. They were trying to elevate their status by adopting the Brahmins’ dress, food habits and rituals etc. He presented the demand with a view to achieve a higher position in the system of caste stratification in a couple of generations by following the way of life of Brahmins, Prof. Srinivas used the word ‘Brahminization’ in the beginning to describe this process of mobility. . But later, in its place, the use of his concept called ‘Sanskritisation’ felt more appropriate. Prof. Srinivas in his book ‘Religion and Society among the Kurgas of South India’ used the term Sanskritisation to express mobility.

According to him, “The caste stage is far away from the rigid system in which the position of each constituent caste is fixed forever. Here mobility has always been possible, and especially in the middle parts of the system of stratification, a low caste would become a vegetarian in a generation or two, giving up drinking and cultivating its rituals and gods, and would be able to elevate its position in the system of stratification. . In short, as far as possible, she would have adopted the customs, rituals and beliefs of the Brahmins. Generally, the Brahminical way of life was often adopted by the lower castes, although it was forbidden in principle.

This process has been called Sanskritization instead of Brahmanisation. “Dr. Yogendra Singh has written that Sanskritisation is a more comprehensive concept than Brahmanisation.

M-N-Srinivas (M.N. Srinivas) developed the concept of ‘Sanskritisation’ in 1952 in his analysis of the social and religious life of ‘Coorg’ people of South India. Srinivas, in his book ‘Social Change in Modern India’, defines Sanskritization as, “Sanskritisation is the process by which a lower Hindu caste or a tribe or other group is a higher and often dwij caste. towards changing its customs, ideology and way of life.” (“Sanskrization is the process by which a ‘ low ‘ Hindu , caste , of tribal or other group , changes its customs , rituals , ideaology and way of life in the direction of high and frequently , ‘ twice born ‘ caste. “)


, Srinivas further wrote, “Sanskritisation not only means adopting new customs and habits, but also manifesting new ideas and values ​​related to sacred and cosmic life, whose distribution is often seen in the vast literature of Sanskrit. karma, dharma, sin, maya, samsara, moksha etc. are some of the popular Sanskrit ideas and when people are sanskritised, they often use these words in their conversation.” (“Sanskritization means not only”. theadoption of new customs and habits , but alsoexposure to new ideas and values ​​which found frequent expression in the vast body of Sanskrit literature , sacred as well as secular , karma , dharma , papa , maya , sansara and moksha are examples of some of the most common Sanskrit theological ideas, and when a people become sanskritized these words occur frequently in their talk.” Moo By adopting lyas, habits, rituals, etc., he tries to attain a higher position than his present position. Sanskritization is a process of social change. As a process it can be understood as follows


  1. Through the process of sanskritisation, any caste, tribe or group tries to adopt the norms of higher than itself (especially the dwij caste) and changes take place in them.


  1. Through sanskritisation, a lower caste, tribe or group acquires a higher status than its present status, resulting in a change in the caste stratification.


  1. Sanskritization brings openness of caste bases and makes caste mobility possible.


  1. The process of sanskritisation can be seen not only in caste but also in tribes and other groups.


  1. Through sanskritisation, a higher position or status is claimed in the social structure, which results in the bottom-up mobility of the lower caste, tribe or group.


  1. Sanskritization is a dual process of change. It is not that the lower caste only receives from the higher caste, but also provides something to it. According to Srinivas, there is information about such cases where a Brahmin sacrifices blood through a non-Brahmin friend. M.N. Srinivas has also mentioned the conditions or factors which are helpful in Sanskritisation. These are – industrialization, business mobility, developed communication system, spread of literacy, western technology. Ritual rituals and the political institution of parliamentary democracy. Under the influence of these factors, Sanskritization became easy.


Prof. Srinivas himself had realized that the process which prompted the lower castes to imitate the customs of the Brahmins in Mysore was only part of a general tendency among the lower castes to imitate the cultural practices of the upper castes. was a typical example. In many cases the upper castes were non-Brahmins. They were Kshatriya caste, Vaishya etc. in different parts of the country. Meaning of Sanskritization: Prof. Srinivas, while defining Sanskritization, wrote, “Sanskritisation is the process by which a lower Hindu caste or a tribe or any other group, in the direction of a higher and often Dwij caste (Brahmin, Kshatriya, Vaishya) Changes in customs, rituals, ideology and way of life. “Usually after such changes, the lower castes begin to claim higher status in the local community than they have traditionally enjoyed in the system of caste stratification. Dr. B. R. Chauhan, explaining the meaning of the concept called Sanskritization, has written, “It is a tool by which we can know the process in which the lower castes and tribes change their behavior and way of life according to the upper classes of Hindu society. Huh .

 According to Prof. Srinivas, along with sanskritisation, and often as a result of it, the associated caste moves upwards, but without sanskritisation, or without mobility, sanskritisation is possible. But as a result of sanskritisation related mobility, there are only pedagogical changes in the stage and it does not cause any structural changes i.e. one species rises above the nearby castes and the other comes down. but

All this necessarily happens in a stable hierarchical system, the system itself does not change. Explaining the meaning of Sanskritisation, Prof. Srinivas wrote, “Sanskritisation does not mean merely adopting new customs and habits but also expressing new ideas and values, which are related to purity and secularism and which are associated with Sanskrit literature. Available in. Karma, Dharma, Papa, Pranya, Moksha, etc. are words which are related to religious Sanskrit literature. When people get Sanskritised, these words are used by them unintentionally. It is clear from the above description. Sanskritization is the process through which a lower Hindu ethnic group or a tribal group tries to elevate its status by changing its entire way of life in the direction of the higher castes or varnas, to rise higher in the system of caste stratification. Prof. Srinivas initially emphasized on the Brahmanical model as the ideal of Sanskritization, but later realized that apart from this Kshatriya and Vaishya models were also available. The way of life of Sriya, Vaishya and at some places some other Prabhu caste has also been followed.



Features of Sanskritisation:


  1. The process of Sanskritization is related to the lower Hindu castes, tribes and some other groups. In order to raise the social status of their group in the system of stratification within the Hindu caste system, appropriate groups have resorted to sanskritisation. The Bhils, Oraons, Santhals and Gonds and the hill people of the Himalayas are included among the tribal people who tried to uplift their social status through Sanskritization and become a part of Hindu society. Those people come under other groups, who do not belong to Hindu religion and culture but are related to other religions and cultures.
  2. Under the process of sanskritisation, the way of life of the higher castes is followed, their customs, customs, food habits, beliefs and values ​​are adopted


  1. The ideals or models of sanskritisation are more than one. That is, the lower castes and some tribal groups did not only emulate the Brahmins as ideals, but


I also followed the transient, Vaishya and some local lord caste, adopted their lifestyle. Pocock has pointed out that the ideals for the lower castes are the castes above themselves to which they are most closely related. Prof. Srinivas also accepted this statement of Pocock as correct.

  1. The process of sanskritisation involves the idea of ​​advance socialisation. Dr. Yogendra Singh considers Sanskritization to be advance socialization, that is, a lower caste group socializes itself in the direction of lifestyle of a higher caste for a couple of generations so that in future it gets a higher position in its local community. Any caste group can easily achieve success in this endeavor when its political and economic power starts increasing or it is related to any monastery, pilgrimage center etc.
  2. One of the main features of Sanskritization is that it is a process expressing pedagogical change and not structural change. This means that through sanskritisation, the status of an ethnic group rises somewhat above the surrounding castes, but there is no change in the caste status itself. The process of sanskritisation represents social mobility. This has the potential to rise above a lower caste group.
  3. The process of sanskritisation represents social and cultural change. Milton Singer has written, “The theory of sanskritisation of M.N. Srinivas is the most comprehensive and widely accepted anthropological theory of social and cultural change in Indian civilization. “That is to say that sanskritisation is not only a process of social change but also a process of cultural changes. As a result of sanskritisation, changes in the field of language, literature, music, science, philosophy, medicine and religious legislation etc. are subject to changes.
  4. The process of sanskritisation is not related to any individual or family but to the group, through this process any ethnic or tribal group tries to elevate its status. If a person or a family does such a thing, he has to become the wrath of not only other castes but also other members of his own caste.
  5. Based on the studies of scholars named Bernard Kohn and Harold Gould, Prof. Srinivas has pointed out that while the lower castes are sanskritising their lifestyles, the higher castes are moving towards modernization and secularisation.


Prof. Srinivas himself felt that in his beginnings the Brahmanical ideal of Sanskritisation was over-emphasised. The reality is that the ideals of Sanskritization have not always been Brahmins. Pocock has discussed the existence of the Kshatriya ideal. Milton Singer has pointed out that not only one or two ideals of Sanskritization are found, but there must be at least three ideals if not four. The people of the first three Varnas are called Dwijs because they have an Upanayana ceremony and they

They have the right to perform Vedic rituals in which the mantras of the Vedas are recited. According to Srinivas, “Brahmins among the ‘dwija’ classes are the most careful with regard to the performance of these rites, and therefore may be regarded as the best model of Sanskritization over others. But we must not forget here that the Brahmins themselves belong to the varna. There is also a lot of variation.

 Apart from Brahmins, Kshatriya and Vaishya Varnas have also been the ideals of Sanskritization on the processes of social change. All those groups who claim to be Kshatriya and Vaishya in different parts of the country have traditions of military work and trade respectively. Even in different parts of the country, there is no similar ritualistic tradition of Kshatriyas and that of all Vaishyas. Many of these people do not have all those rites which are considered necessary for the Dwij classes. Some groups have followed the Brahmins, some Kshatriyas and some other Vaishyas, have adopted their way of life. The barbers, potters, tellers, carpenters, blacksmiths, weavers, shepherds etc. are close to the untouchable or untouchable groups just above the impurity line.

These castes represent the castes of the Shudra class. Based on the observation of Prof. Srinivas, it is felt that the Sanskritization of some other castes in the wider category of Shudras has been very less. But whether or not they have been sanskritised, dominant peasant castes offer local ideals of imitation and, as Pocock and Singer have observed, it is through such castes that the Kshatriya (and other) ideals have been adopted. Local dominant caste (Prabhu caste plays an important role in the process of sanskritisation. If the local dominant caste is brahmin, then the ideal of sanskritisation would be of brahminical type and if it is Rajput or Vaishya, then ideal would be of Rajputi or Vaishya type. Prof. Srinivas According to it, although Brahmanical rituals and customs spread among the lower castes over a long period of time, the locally dominant caste was also imitated by the rest of the people and often these locally dominant castes were not Brahmins. It can be said that the Brahmanical practices arrived in a series of low-level castes as a chain reaction, that is, each group received something from a group one level higher than itself and gave something to a group below it.


Major sources and factors of Sanskritisation:


  1. Under the caste system, not only are different castes considered higher or lower than each other, but also in occupations, food, clothes, ornaments, etc., certain types are considered higher and others lower. In the system of stratification, those castes are considered to be those who eat vegetarian food, do not use alcohol, do not offer blood sacrifice and do not do related business or trade in things that bring impurity. The position of the upper castes is considered to be high in this system of stratification, so the caste desiring to upgrade its status follows a higher caste and lastly the Brahminical way of life. Prof. Srinivas has told that in the spread of Sanskritization among the lower castes, those traditionally accepted valid beliefs have helped. First, the Advija castes were allowed to perform rituals, but they were not allowed to chant Vedic mantras while performing it. Thus the rituals were separated from the mantras that were uttered on that occasion. The result was that Brahmin rituals spread to all Hindus and even to the untouchables. Secondly, the Brahmin priest performs marriages with these people. The only difference is that he does not recite Vedic mantras on this occasion but speaks Mangalaptaka sources, which are cultural compositions from the age of the Vedas. These are two such customary accepted valid beliefs that helped the Advija castes to perform many rituals. During the process of sanskritisation, Brahminic institutions and values ​​also spread among the Advija castes. When an ethnic group is sanskritised, it tends to an upper caste ie usually Brahmin or any other local dominant caste. When the yogi is Sanskritized, then some words used in Sanskrit scriptures like sin, virtue, dharma, karma, maya and moksha etc. start being used in their conversation.


  1. Some degree of group mobility was possible under the traditional caste stage, i.e. the position of the groups used to change slightly. This was possible with the fact that there was ambiguity regarding the mutual status of the castes falling in the middle of the system of caste stratification, the position of Brahmins and untouchables at the two ends was fixed in the system of social stratification but there was mobility among castes among them. It was found, during the British era, the mobility of this group increased due to the increase in opportunities to earn money, at this time the people of the lower castes got opportunities to earn money. After earning a lot of money, they claimed high status for themselves and some groups even succeeded in achieving it.


  1. Prof. Srinivas K

According to this, improvement in economic condition, attainment of political power, education, leadership and desire to rise up in the system of stratification etc. are relevant factors for sanskritisation. In each case of sanskritisation, all or some of these elements are present in different quantities in a definite form. Sanskritisation does not automatically garner a high prestige for any group. This group clearly has to be claimed to belong to the Vaishya, Kshatriya or Brahmin varna. Such a particular group has to change its customs, food and way of life in an appropriate amount. If there is any inconsistency i.e. any deficiency in their claim, then they have to make up a proper fiction for it so that the inconsistency in their claim can be removed. Furthermore, an ethnic group that wants to elevate its position in the system of stratification has to wait indefinitely, that is, a generation or two. After a generation or two, there is a possibility that the claim of high status may be accepted by the people. But it is not necessary that the result of sanskritisation will always be in the form of higher status of caste and this is also completely clear through the example of untouchables. Despite Sanskritisation, the status of the untouchables could not be elevated.


  1. When a caste or a part of a caste has attained secular power, it usually means adopting the traditional symbols, customs, rituals, ideas, beliefs and way of life etc of high status. Getting the services of a Brahmin priest to perform rituals, observing the festivals of the cultural calendar, visiting famous pilgrimage places, and gaining more knowledge of religious scriptures, thus allowed some degree of dynamism in the process of sanskritisation. . Anulom marriage is also responsible for this type of mobility. A caste group wanted to include itself in the groups considered higher than itself and Anulom marriage has done this.



 The processes of social change presented institutional means. It is necessary to emphasize here that due to the dynamics of caste in the traditional period, only pedagogical changes took place in specific castes or their branches and there were no structural changes in it, that is, individual castes either rose or fell, but the whole The structure remained the same.


  1. The development of means of communication and transport has also brought Sanskritization to various parts and groups of the country which were previously inaccessible, and the spread of literacy brought Sanskritization to those groups which were very low in the system of caste stratification .


  1. Towns, temples and places of pilgrimage have been other sources of Sanskritisation. Fair opportunities have been available for the spread of cultural ideas and beliefs among the people gathered at these places. Bhajan congregations, Harikathas and Sadhus-Sanyasis have contributed a lot in the spread of Sanskritisation. Trained priests in big cities, Sanskrit schools and colleges, printing presses and religious organizations have contributed to this process.


Concept of Sanskritization : A Critical Approach: We will consider here some of the drawbacks of the concept of Sanskritization which are as follows


  1. Prof. Srinivas himself has admitted that sanskritisation is a very complex and heterogeneous concept. It is also possible that instead of considering it as a single concept, it is more beneficial to consider it as the sum of several concepts. They are of the opinion that as soon as it is known that the word Sanskritization is a hindrance instead of helping in the analysis. He should be released without hesitation and immediately.


  1. Prof. Srinivas has told some conflicting things regarding the concept of Sanskritization and has written, “Sanskritisation can happen without any group, economic upgradation”. At one place he has written, economic upliftment, accumulation of political power, education, leadership and desire to rise up in the system of stratification etc. are suitable factors for sanskritisation. “It is written elsewhere, “As a result of sanskritisation, no group automatically attains high status, there should be continuous sanskritisation and structural changes of castes”. Otherwise he will be unable to cross the barrier of untouchability. It is clear from the appropriate statements that there are many inconsistencies in the concept of Sanskritization, conflicting things are seen.


  1. Prof. Srinivas believes that vertical social mobility is possible through the process of sanskritisation, through this process a lower caste becomes a vegetarian in one or two generations, giving up drinking and sanskritising its rituals and gods, the system of caste stratification I am able to elevate my position, but it is questionable whether this actually happens. In this regard, Dr. D.N. Mazumdar has written that theoretically and only theoretically, such a situation can be imagined, when we focus on specific cases, our knowledge and experience of caste dynamics can be seen from the point of view of reggae theoretical assumption. Doesn’t come off right. The Chamars have certainly been able to advance somewhat in their original social position: whether they were organized as a sect, or whether they drank alcohol.

Even if you have stopped eating meat, widow-marriage, marriage-dissolution, but

Is there any single example of vertical rise in the system of new social stratification? The spread of the Chamars is of a horizontal type, and the same is true of other lower castes. The lower castes see caste mobility as a horizontal movement (movement), while the Brahmins and other higher castes regard such mobility as an ascent. Whatever facts have been obtained regarding caste mobility, they do not express vertical mobility but horizontal mobility. It is clear from these factual observations and thoughts of Dr. Mazumdar that through the process of sanskritisation, no lower caste rises vertically, does not become equal to the higher castes, but from other castes of its own kind or its own caste. She rises up in different branches of.


  1. Dr. Yogendra Singh considers Sanskritization to be a process of cultural and social mobility. Sanskritization is relatively a process of cultural and social mobility in these periods of the Hindu social system. It is an endogenous source of social change. From a socio-psychological point of view, sanskritisation is a culturally specific case of the universal motivation to advance socialization towards the culture of a higher group in the hope of improving one’s status in the future.


  1. B. Kuppuswami considers the reference group process of Sanskritization as an example of operation, but it is impossible to get membership of the reference group in Indian society due to the caste system based on birth is found here. In such a closed society, it is impossible for a person to change his caste group and take membership of any other caste group. Advance socialization in a relatively closed social structure would be dysfunctional for the individual because in the absence of mobility, he would not be able to become a member of the group he aspires to be a member of. We agree with B.Kuppuswami when he says that something is possible, that is, only minor changes take place within the varna. It is clear that sanskritisation is not a process by which structural changes can be possible in Hindu society.


  1. Prof. Srinivas himself believes that in the past many dominant castes have attained high positions in the system of stratification either by state order or by organization of independent political power. KM Panikar holds that by the fifth century BCE, all the so-called Kshatriyas came into existence through the deprivation of power by the lower castes and as a result acquired Kshatriya-like roles and social status. According to Dr. Yogendra Singh, the process of sanskritisation here refers to the rise and fall of power, through struggles and wars and through political maneuvering, to represent the rise or trend in Indian history of dominant groups. These are all examples of structural changes which are not fully understood by the concept of Sanskritisation. It is clear from the above description that this is not a very suitable concept to describe the process of cultural change. In this regard, Dr. D.N. Mazumdar has written that we are not happy with the tool we have used to describe the process of cultural change. This is what F. G. Bailey makes clear in his book “Caste and the Economic Frontier”. Sanskritization refers to a pool of concepts and it is a loose or loose concept that is devoid of any particular quality. This concept by Mr. Niwas The wide range given to s makes it impossible to justify its use, especially with respect to vertical and horizontal mobility.





Concept: Westernization refers to the process of change that arose in various aspects of Indian life, society and culture as a result of coming in contact with the western culture that the British rulers brought with them. Dr. M.N.Sri Niwas (Dr.M.N.Srinivas) has written while explaining westernization, I have used the word westernization for the changes that have occurred in Indian society and culture as a result of 150 years of British rule. And this word denotes the changes taking place at different levels like technology, institutions, ideology, values ​​etc. ( I have used the term westernization to characterize the changes brought about in Indian and culture as a result of over 150 years of British rules and the term subsumes changes occurring at different levels , technology , institutions ideology and values ​​: M. N. Srinivas . ” Social change in Modern Indian ” . University of California Press , 1966. P. 47 )

MN Srinivas developed the concepts of ‘Sanskritisation’ and ‘Westernisation’ in 1952 in his analysis of the social and religious life of the Coorg people in South India. The theory of social change assumes that the basis of change is found within the system as well as outside it. The concept of sanskritisation expresses the dynamics within the caste-system whereas the concept of westernization refers to the changes that have taken place in the culture of the West, especially Great Britain.

It is the result of contact.


 M . N. Srinivas (M.N. Srinivas) has given the explanation of westernization in this way, “Used westernization for the change in Indian society as a result of 150 years of British rule in India. After the British rule was established in India, Since then, our contact with western culture was established and became closer day by day. As a result, the impact of English culture was seen on the values, ideals, institutions, systems and technology of Indians. Technological change in Indian society, establishment of educational institutions, nationality. The emergence of a new political culture, modern knowledge, the introduction of new ideologies and values ​​in life, etc. Westernization can be said to be the result of two hundred years of British rule in India. Tried to explain through.



Features of Westernisation:


  1. A Broad Concept: The concept of westernization is very broad. It includes all kinds of physical and non-material changes arising from the influence of the West. Clarifying Srinivas’s views in this regard, Kuppuswamy has written that westernization is mainly concerned with three areas: (a) behavioral aspects, such as: food habits, dress, manners of etiquette and behavior patterns etc.; (b) aspects related to knowledge, such as: science, technology and literature etc.; (c) The aspects related to social values, such as: humanism, secularism and egalitarian ideas, the changes taking place in all these aspects of society due to the influence of the West are related to westernization.


  1. Morally neutral: There is no need to have elements of morality in the process of westernization i.e. the consequences of westernization can be good as well as bad. Westernization in Indian society has taken place only in a good direction; this is not the matter . Thus this process


  1. Culture brought by the British: Many countries like America, Great Britain, France, Germany, Italy etc. are understood by the word ‘Western country’. There is a huge cultural difference between them themselves. The process of westernization which is active in India as a factor of social change is actually the effect of that form of western culture which the British rulers brought with them and introduced them to the people of India.


  1. A Complex Process: The process of westernization involves many complex elements. This process is also only through the changes in customs, caste system, religion, family and way of living which have resulted from scientific and technological progress to the western. This process is also complex because it did not affect the entire Indian society equally. The effect of westernization is more visible in the cities than in the villages and in the upper classes as compared to the lower classes.


  1. Conscious – Unconscious Process: Westernization is not only a conscious process but also an unconscious process. In other words, social change in India has taken place only consciously through the process of westernization; It’s not like that . We ourselves do not know when we have unintentionally adopted many western cultural elements brought by the British. They have subconsciously entered our lives and brought about the change.


  1. Lack of a definite pattern: There is no one model or ideal of westernization. The ideal of westernization during the British rule was the influence of England. After independence, as India’s relations with Russia and America increased; The influence of these countries on our technology and social and cultural life grew. From the current changes taking place in Indian society due to western influence, it is difficult to tell which country is this influence from England, America or Russia etc. It is clear that the process of westernization in our country is not based on the ideal of any one country.


  1. Westernization is not related to any general culture: Westernization is definitely related to the influence of western countries, but something is also found in the cultural characteristics of all western countries. There is no common culture of western country. Even after this, Dr. Srinivas has held that the process of westernization we talk about for the social change taking place in India is actually related to the influence of British culture. This statement does not seem more appropriate because the changes taking place in the Indian society are the result of the combined influence of many countries of the West.


  1. Incorporation of many values: Westernization includes many such values ​​whose nature is very different from the traditional values ​​of India. For example, equality, liberty, individualism, material attractiveness, rationality and humanism are values ​​that are considered more important in Western culture. Westernization is the process of adopting these values ​​of the West in place of traditional values.


 M.N. Srinivas has given an explanation of the consequences of westernization-

 (1) The development of humanism is important. Srinivas has written, “Westernization has some value preferences. If one word is used for these, then we can call it humanism.

 (2) The traditional structure of Indian society – caste and

Many changes can be seen in the context of the system, joint family system and rural community.

(3) Development of equality, democracy and materialism, development of values ​​contrary to sati-pratha and child marriage, development of values ​​favorable to inter-caste marriage and widow remarriage, etc. are the result of westernization.

 (4) Public welfare, social welfare and security of the country should become the working areas of the state.

(5) Reinterpretation of Hinduism.

 (6) Initiation of many political and cultural movements.

(7) The spread of education and emphasis on women’s education is the result of westernization.



Effect of Westernization on Indian Society:

 Dr. M. N. Srinivas detailed Westernization in his famous book Social Change in Modern India (P – 47) and Yogendra Singh in his book Modernization of Indian Tradition (P – 9) as well as B. Kuppuswamy in his book Social Change in India (P – 62) discusses the effects of westernization.

Due to westernization, there has been a multidimensional change in the Indian society which can be seen on the following points:


  1. Change in Caste System: The biggest impact of westernization on social life was that the feeling of caste bondage, untouchability has ended. This process laid more emphasis on social equality. With its effect, the person gradually came to understand that the division of castes and the system of high and low among them is not a divine creation but a planned social policy. As a result of this, most of the people started opposing the caste rules. As a result of this, today the social contacts related to caste, related to food, drinking, untouchability and business have been completely ended. The lower castes started raising their social status by imitating the behavior of the higher castes. Today, with the elimination of all social and economic disabilities of the Scheduled Castes and the Other Backward Classes and the special voting rights given to them, the entire structure of the caste-system has collapsed and broken down.


  1. Changes in the Status of Women: Due to westernization, the status of women started changing. When personal freedom increased due to its effect, then women also tried to increase their economic self-reliance by entering various professions and services. The increasing rights of women in family, marriage and public life are the result of these conditions today. Changes in the attitudes of men towards women are also influenced by the ideology of Western culture which gives importance to humanistic and egalitarian values.


  1. Changes in joint family: Due to the effect of westernization, individual freedom is helpful in the advancement of the individual. For this reason people separate from the joint family and establish nuclear family in the cities. This culture inspired people to achieve high status by increasing their abilities and skills and to use the income earned by them freely. Due to this idea being against the joint family system, those people who were more capable and courageous started leaving the joint family. As a result, nuclear families grew rapidly. Influenced by the ideology introduced by Westernization related to equality and material happiness, women also started favoring individual freedom and small family. When women entered different economic fields, it was no longer possible for their family to remain united. As a result of this, there is a continuous decrease in the structure of joint families in villages as well as in cities.


  1. Changes in customs: Westernization brought about extensive changes in customs, manners, living habits, eating habits, lifting and sitting, ways related to each and every sphere of life. For example handshake, good morning, sorry, pant-shirt etc.


  1. Changes in marriage: As a result of westernization, co-education, opportunity for men and women to work together, choosing a suitable life partner instead of following the rules of endogamy, was considered better. As a result of this, on the one hand, the practice of late marriage increased and on the other hand many educated and aware people also started doing inter-caste marriages. At this time marriage came to be seen as the basis of a healthy family life. As a result, on the one hand the number of divorces started increasing and on the other hand the rules related to endogamy and exogamy started weakening. Along with this, the practice of marriage with the people of their choice increased, which is called love marriage.


  1. Changes in religious life: Due to the influence of westernization culture, there is a wide change in the attitudes of superstitions, rituals and evil practices based on religion. When the Christian missionaries started motivating people to adopt Christianity by drawing attention to the superstitions and evils prevalent in Hinduism, then Hindus themselves were also inspired to evaluate the stereotypes based on their religion. At this time, educated and prudent people started opposing the Devavasi system, untouchability, sati-pratha, child-marriage, control of widow-marriage and low status of women, etc. Christian missionaries

Impressed by the ideal of humanism and social equality presented to the people, many reformist sects in India tried to bring useful changes in Hinduism by clarifying the importance of religious equality, human service and fraternity. And the role of Ramakrishna Mission is more important. Due to the influence of the ideology of westernization, the effect of ghosts and spirits began to decrease, as well as a change in the ideology of rationality and action. Simultaneously, secularism developed.


  1. Increase in individualistic and material values: Due to the effect of westernization, importance is given to development through labor and its use in the interest of the individual. These are the conditions due to which in our society, instead of primary relations, secondary and interest-oriented social relations started increasing. Today, the importance of showing and showing is increasing in the relations of family and friendship. Most of the people take more interest in those works which can bring personal benefit to them. Traditionally, a person’s income was considered a moral right of all his close blood relatives, but today a person considers it appropriate to use his success only for personal interest. This change of attitudes and ideas has affected the form of all the traditional institutions of India.


  1. Change in politics: Due to the effect of westernization, democratic and democratic institutions also started developing in our country. The British system of governance was based on capitalist ideals, which are themselves combined with many two social defects. As a result of the reaction of these defects, the spread of communist, socialist and individualist political ideas and principles also took place in this country.


  1. Development of Humanism: Dr. M.N. Srinivas has said that westernization includes some special values ​​which we can address as ‘Humanism’. ‘Humanism’ is a spirit in which special importance is given to the human being, regardless of the person’s caste, economic status, age, gender and religion. such feelings

As a result of this, awareness about human rights has arisen in all sections of the society. The special rights given to the lower castes and backward castes in our society only explains the growth in humanism. It was the belief of the British that when the consciousness of their rights is created in the neglected and backward sections of the society, then these classes themselves will start demanding equality. This work could not be done during the British rule, but after independence, in all the urban, rural and tribal areas, today these classes have started demanding their rights and equality.


  1. Development of Nationality: Western culture, education and ideologies not only brought us in contact with the national life of the world but also created a cultural commonality among the various contrasting groups within the country. Seeing this cultural similarity and other foreign nations, a new wave of unity and nationalism appeared in Indian life.


  1. Changes in the economic field: As a result of westernization, the means of transport improved and industrialization increased, due to which the economic self-sufficiency of the village gradually ended and the commercialization of agriculture started. The second impact on the economic life of the village was the destruction of rural industries, as the home-industry could not stand the competition of the machine-industry. Simultaneously, the old land-system prevalent in the village was abolished and the Zamindari system was developed. Thus an exploitative system started in the village. On the other hand, industrialization in the city resulted in rapid economic development. Big mills and factories were established, the use of machines increased day by day and production started on a large scale. Due to the advancement in the means of transport, not only the inter-state trade increased, but the inter-state trade also increased, due to which the trade and commerce of the country also progressed. Today, the government policy of globalization and liberalization in business is also a result of westernization in a way.


  1. Changes in literature: The literature of various Indian languages ​​has also been influenced by western education and culture. English literature is considered to be very rich among all the modern literature of the world. The English language provided Indian scholars and writers the opportunity to read and understand and benefit from these English literature and the literature of other languages ​​of Europe. With this, western literary style, content and ideas started to be incorporated in the literature of Hindi as well as all other provincial languages ​​and they were modernized. In the novels and stories of P. Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar, Rabindranath Tagore, Bankim Chandra Chatterjee, the major problems of Hindu society got a place which was the influence of the English government literature. In the last phase of the 19th century, influenced by the British rule and education, some writers of Bengal wrote about social reform and national zeal in their literature. Among them ‘Anand Math’ written by Bankim Chandra Chatterjee is called the Bible of Indian nationality. In this book he wrote the national song 1 of ‘Vande Mataram’. Thus westernization has brought multi-dimensional changes in the Indian society which are related to family, marriage, kinship, religion, education, literature.

Religion, art, music, customs, economy, political system have affected all the areas.

Social Change in India: Dasha and Direction 106



Difference between Sanskritization and Westernization:


  1. Westernization Happening in Indian Society 1. Sanskritization is an inborn process taking place in Indian society. Its an exogenous process. Its source is in the Indian society itself, that is, the source of education is outside the Indian society. There is a western country.


  1. Sanskritization is a very ancient process 2. Pasteurization is a relatively modern process.


  1. Sanskritization is a narrow process 3. Westernization is a comprehensive process. Because its relation is only low because they are related to all castes and castes. from classes.


  1. Lower caste in sanskritisation 4. In westernization all castes try to imitate their culture by imitating western upper caste and try to raise the traditional social level. tries.


  1. Sanskritization according to Srinivas. 5. Westernization leads to quantitative changes and structural to only numerical changes, both types of changes take place. not structural.


  1. The ideal pattern in Sanskritization is high 6. The ideal model in westernization is a varna or a local sovereign caste. It is a western country.


  1. Purist ideals in Sanskritization. 7. In westernization, secular ideals are given importance. importance is given.


  1. Relatively more mobility through Sanskritization 8. Westernization brings more mobility.


  1. The reverse process of sanskritisation. 9. Any opposite process of westernization is called de-sanskritisation. No, although Western countries are influenced by non-Western countries.


  1. Economic prosperity and political power 10. Factors contributing to westernization are the main contributory factors in Sanskritisation. cannot be predicted.



 Difference between Sanskritization and Modernization:


  1. Sanskritization taking place in Indian society. 1. Sanskritization is an innate process taking place in the Indian society. It is an exogenous process. Its source is present in the Indian society itself, that is, outside the Indian society. There is a western country.


  1. Sanskritization is a very ancient process. 2. Modernization is a relatively innovative process.


  1. Sanskritization is a compact process. 3. Modernization is a comprehensive process because it is concerned only with low because it is related to castes in all the regions. from change.
  2. Lower caste in sanskritisation 4. In modernization all the castes try to imitate the modern values ​​by imitating the upper caste and raise their traditional social status. tries to.


  1. Sanskritization according to Srinivas. 5. Modernization leads to pedagogical and only pedagogical changes, both structural and not structural changes. There are.


  1. The ideal model in Sanskritization is high 6. The ideal model in modernization is a varna or a local sovereign caste. Can also be western country, America or other modern country


  1. Purist ideals are given importance in Sanskritization 7. In modernization, secular ideals are given importance. importance is given.


  1. Relatively less through sanskritisation 8. Modernization brings more mobility. Mobility ensues.


  1. Opposite process of Sanskritization 9. Any opposite process of modernization is called de-sanskritisation. Although in some countries traditionalism and fundamentalism are being encouraged.


  1. Economic prosperity and political 10. Various supporting forces in modernization are major contributory factors in Sanskritization which are not predictable factors. can be imposed.








 Dominant Caste 


 The concept of Prabhu caste may be mentioned in the context of MN Srinivas’s interpretation of Sanskritisation. He developed this concept in 1959 during his study of Rampura village in Mysore. Srinivas has defined Prabhu caste by writing, “A caste is said to be ‘Prabhu’ when it is powerful in numbers in a village or local area and has impressive economic and political power. It is not necessary that it is a traditional caste. be of the highest caste in the hierarchy.” (“A caste is dominant when it is numerically the strongest in the village or local area , and economically and politically exercises a preponderating influence, it need not be the highest caste in terms of traditional and conventional ranking of caste. ” ). It is clear from this statement of Srinivas that in order to be a God caste, it is necessary to have three elements-

(1) The presence of a large number of members of a particular caste in the village or area concerned,


 (2) to be prosperous in the economic sphere, and


 (3) Having political dominance. Apart from this, he also says that in order to be a GOD caste, it is not necessary to be the highest caste in the traditional caste hierarchy. M.N. Srinivas has mentioned certain characteristics or elements of Prabhu caste, with the help of which he attains that state. this is the following


(1) Numerical Strength: Srinivas says that a 361 important basis or element of determination of lord caste is in a village or area.

Having more number of members of a particular caste. When he studied Rampura village of Mysore, he found that most of the population in this village belonged to Okkalinga caste. In fact, in 10 villages, the more number of people supporting the caste group, the more likely it is to establish dominance over other castes.


(2) Land Ownership: On the basis of his study, Srinivas found that in a village or across the same caste, the same caste is able to get the place of the lord caste, which has ownership over a large part of the cultivable land of the village. Okkalinga caste in Rampura village is also a lord caste because the people of that caste are the big landowners.


 (3) Economic Strength: Srinivas has considered economic power as important in the determination of God’s caste. The more prosperous a caste is economically, the more convenient it is to get the position of the Lord caste. Under the influence of economic power, they continue to help other castes financially in various forms.


(4) Political Strength: According to Srinivas, a major determinant element of Lord caste is considered to be political power. Today the sovereign castes found in different parts of India continue to influence the political power. Prabhu caste has a special role in elections.


(5) Western Education and Occupation: In the village or area, the caste of which more people have got more place in government jobs by getting modern or western education, their dominance over other castes is established. When Srinivas studied Rampura village, he found that there were only 4 graduates in the village at that time and 9 of them belonged to Okkalinga caste. As a result the Okkalinga caste was accepted as a sovereign caste.


 (6) High in Caste Hierarchy: Srinivas believes that for the Lord caste, that caste should have a high place in the caste hierarchy. He says that some people have a belief that in order for a caste group to be a sovereign caste, it is not always necessary that it should have a high position in the entire caste hierarchy. Such an assumption is not correct. Practically even today, on the basis of numbers, no Harijan caste can become a sovereign caste. In this way Srinivas has given the explanation of many elements for the Lord caste. It is necessary to know here that for a caste to be a GOD caste, it is not necessary to have all the above mentioned elements. Different elements may be more important than others in different areas.



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