BA LLB sociology first semester sample question answer Tradition of India: In this post you will read about TRADITIONAL, tradition of India , culture of India, indian rituals and tradition , indian culture and tradition, indian culture and heritage
Q. 1. What is Culture ? What are its characteristics ?
Ans. What is Culture ?
In common parlance the word ‘culture’ is understood to mean beautiful, refined or interesting but this interpretation does not constitute its scientific definition. Culture is precisely defined in sociology. Some major definitions are the following:
1. Tylor. “Culture is that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, customs and any other capabilities and habits. acquired by man as a member of society.”
2. Redfield. “An organised body of conventional understanding manifested in art and artifact which persisting through tradition characterizes human group”
3. Joseph Piper. “Culture is the quintessence of all natural goods of the world, and of those gifts and qualities which, while belonging to man, lip beyond the immediate sphere of his needs and wants.”
4. White. “Culture is a symbolic, continuous, cumulative and progressive process.”
In this way, culture includes all that man has acquired in the mental and intellectual sphere of his individual and social life. In the words of Maclver and Page, “This is the realm of styles, of values, of emotional attachments, of intellectual adventures. Culture, then, is the antithesis of civilization. It is the expression of our nature in our modes of living and thinking, in our everyday intercourse, in art, in literature, in recreation and enjoyment.” Characteristics of Culture
1. Culture is an acquired quality. Culture is not innate. Traits learnt through socialization, habits and thoughts are what is called culture. Man acquires the cultural behaviour because he has the capability of symbolic communication. . .
2. Culture is communicative. In this way culture is communicated from one generation to the next. As a result of this, culture is constantly accumulating. The new generation benefits by the experiences of the older generation through the communicability of culture. In this way culture becomes semi-temporary and remains unaffected by the extinction of a group or an individual.
3. Culture is social, not individual. Every individual takes some part in the transmission and communication of culture; but culture is social rather than individual. It is inclusive of the expectation of the members of groups. Man cannot create or generate culture while existing apart from the group.
4 Culture is idealistic. In culture are included those ideal patterns or ideal norms of behaviour according to which the members of society attempt to conduct themselves. Society accepts these ideals, norms and patterns
. 5. Culture fulfils some needs. Culture fulfils those ethical and social needs which are ends in themselves. Social habits are included in culture. Habits can be formed of those activities only which tend to fulfil some needs. Without fulfilling these needs culture cannot exist.
6. Culture has the characteristic of adaptation. Culture is constantly undergoing change in concurring to the environment and due to this transformation it is constantly being adapted to external force but once it is developed, the influence of the natural environment
begins to decrease. Besides, the various aspects of culture are also undergoing development and some internal adaptation among them consequently being necessitated.
7. Culture has the quality of becoming integrated. Culture possesses an order and a system. Its various parts are integrated with each other and any new element which is introduced is also integrated. Those cultures – which are more open to external influence are comparatively more heterogeneous but nevertheless some degree of integration is evident in all cultures.
In this way, culture is social, idealistic and acquired and fulfils man’s needs. It possesses the characteristics of communication, adaptation and integration. It is a special quality of man. It is an evidence of his social heritage.
Q. 2. Define and classify social norms and show their importance.
Ans. Social Norms Social norms are rules that serve to control and guide the lives of individuals within a society. They are also called Frames of Reference. Expanding upon the frames of reference, Krech and Crutchfield, in their treatise. Theory and Problems of Social Psychology say that “The term ‘frame of reference’ is simply used to denote the functionally related factors (present and past) which operate at the moment to determine the particular properties of a psychological phenomenon (such as perception; judgement, effectively)” Every individual applies some definite laws which determine his perceptions, judgement, conduct etc. According to his own particular philosophy of life, he judges everything on same specific criteria that conform with his philosophy of life. These criteria these definite moulds of experience and his philosophy of life are his frame of reference. As-Lapiere has written. “The individual’s frame of reference would determine in the first instance the meaning to him of any given situation.” In this manner, each individual analyses any object or situation according to his own frame of reference thus presenting a different viewpoint. In his concept, Kimball Young writes in his book A Hand Book of Social Psychology “One measure of maturity of the individual is the degree to which his traits attitudes, sentiments, values, ideas, become integrated into a large philosophy of life, a general frame of reference by which he judges his
own acts, words, thoughts and the acts and words of others, such an Individual style may come to characters one’s entire life. It is born of
all elements, inherited and learned which have gone into one’s all elements, inherited and learned from Kimball Young’s treatise gives a precise definition and a clarity to the concept of social norms and Frame of reference. Codes of Social Norms
: The collection social norms is called a social code. Important social codes may be divided into the following classes.
1. Religious code. 2. Moral code 3. Code of customs 4. Code of fashion
Although the external form of social codes may be more or less the same, yet its norms are subject to change and variation according to the conditions existing in spatio-temporal context. In this way, the social code concept is changeable and dynamic. Section to social norms
Social norms differ from legal laws. Law is backed by the strength and power of the government and they can be enforced compulsorily. Social norms have no such sanction and force. And yet, this does not mean that social norms have to no force. On occasion one sees that social norms may appear even more powerful than any statutory obligation because they have in them the sanction of society. At this stage it is essential to comprehend the concept of such sanction. To every code is attached some or the other sanction. If there is no such sanction than there is all possibility of the norms of the code being disregarded casually violated and it is all these attiributes that constitute his social heritage. Social heritage is the sum total of all those cultural pattern that the individual acquires from all the social groups of which he is a member. This social heritage is handed down to the members of society from one generation to the next. Each generation makes its own contribution to this social heritage.
The signs and symbols of human language differ from the signs made by animals.
Classification of social norms
In a society the social norms arc so many in number and no varied in kind that it is literally impossible to describe all of them. Hence, their classification is no less difficult a task. They are sometimes classified on the basis of their sanction or acceptance. Then they are…
classified according to their social importance and also according to their changeability and power of generation. As a general rule social norms are more usually classified into mores, folkways, laws, fashions, conventions, etiquette, etc. All these social norms have implicit in them a kind of compulsion that forces the members of society to pay heed to them willy-nilly. These social norms are not the same for various different social circumstances and for various individuals, but admit of various modifications in order to suit the status and function of the individual. Similarly they are not obeyed identically by all individuals. Their form is changes by the action and reaction that always occurs between individual and society. They very concept of society without any social norms is inadmissible.
Importance of social norms
The life of society attaches much importance to various kinds of social norms. They regulate the life of individual so that even while changes occur in society a certain control and conformity is maintained.
It is to present the violation of the norms of the code that it is backed by some sanction. For example every statutory laws is provided by force from the government. Similarly, a religious norms derives its power and compulsion from supra-social forces such as God, saints, heaven or hell. Such considerations provide an adequate sanction to religious codes. The moral code does not posses the sanction of any external force but its power and compulsion derives from the individual’s own conscience. Code of custom is backed by social sanction. If a person chooses to violate the code of conduct prescribed by his own group while he lives in it, he calls upon himself the opposition and anger of his group. The fashion code also lack any sanction other than a psychological one and even that is self imposed in as much as the individual prefers to conform to fashion. In this way it can be said that the code of fashion carries a psychological reason..
Q. 3. Write short notes on : (1) Folkways, and (2) Mores.
Ans. Folkways and Mores are the primary concepts of sociology. They occupy an important place in our social life. They influence the individual as well as social behaviour and that is why they are important in our social life.
(1) Folkways-The term ‘Folkways’ was for the first time used by a well-known social thinker. M. G. Summer in his book Folkways’. Through this term SUMMER wanted to give an idea of those ways
and traditions that influence the life of the people. Since then, it was become an important subject of study of Social Psychology
Definitions of Folkways-Folkways as the term indicates is a sum total or the ways and the pattern of behaviour of a particular fold or a group of people. As a social being every individual has to undertake different types of behaviour from morning till evening. Some of these behaviour are general and normal while the others are specific and particular. These specific and particular behaviour have their origin in the ways of the folk or the group in the society.
Teuter and Hart have defined it in the following ways:
“The Folkways are simple habits of action common to the member of the group they are the ways of folk and are somewhat standards and have some degree of traditional sanction for their persistence.”
Similarly Maclver and Page have defined in the following terms.
They Folkways are the recognized or accepted ways of behaviour in the society.
Characteristics of Folkways – Definition of Folkways given above, bring to light to certain characteristics of the Folkways. It shall be useful to bring out these characteristics more clearly.
(1) Folkways are the result of spontaneous growth – Folkways do not develop as a result of conscious of deliberate attempt. They grow in a natural and standardized manner.
(2) Social objective – Every Folkways has one or the other objective. In other words, Folkways are based on social aims.
(3) Social controls and regulation – Folkways are not universal. They differ from society to society. It is also because of the conditions the attitude the socio-economic conditions and the cultural background of different society.
(5) No sense of morality-Folkways are not morals standard or values. If somebody acts against the accepted. Folkways be is blamed for it and held guilty of breach of some accepted social standard of behaviour. In other words, it is slightly lower in status as compared to low traditions or customs.
Mores-Meaning an definitions – We have already seen the Folkways regulate and control our social behaviour. One thing has also become clear that welfare of a group or the society does not form a part of Folkways. As soon as the welfare of the group or the society
gets attached to a folkway, it changes its form and becomes ‘Mores’. . explained and clarified the meaning of the Mores. He said that it is the judgement of society in regard to its behaviour. In facts, Mores are no!hing but an another form of Folkways. Mores has been defined by different psychologists in different ways. Give below are a new
(1) Mores as defined by Dowson and Gettys
“Mores are Folkways which have added to them, through some reformation, he judgement that group welfare is particularly dependent upon them.”
– (2) Maclver and Page have defined Mores in the following words:
“When Folkways have added to them conception of group, welfare standards of rights or wrong they are converted into Mores.”
(3) Mores as defined by Green : “Common ways of acting which are more definitely recorded as right and proper then the Folkways and which bring greater certainly and severity of punishment if violated/ are thc Mores.”
Characteristics of Mores – From the definitions given above, we and that Mores have certain special elements and qualities in them, these elements or characteristics are enumerated below:
(1) Concept of group welfare – Every Mores is the element of group social welfare attached to it. This elements of social welfare convent a Folkways into a Mores
(2) Determine the mode of behaviour – Mores determine modes of our day-to-day behaviour as social beings. For example our behaviour towards our parents and elder men is very much determine by outMores .
(3) Helpful in social adjustment – Mores are guides by the elements of welfare of the society or the groups. They therefore, caused on the values and the attitudes of the society. They therefore, day a vital role in the social adjustment.
(4) Uniformity in social life — Mores are the standards of the behaviour their violation brings punishments. They therefore are very helpful in bringing out uniformity of social behaviour. Because of the fear of punishment most of the members of the society, behave in the manner as prescribed by Mores.
(5) Helpful in social change also-Mores can be instrumental in social change also. They are basically conservative and once they have persisted for a very time, individual grow restive and try to bring out a social change.
Q. 4. What is custom ? What is its importance ? Ans.
Customs What is custom ?
Every society has some definite but relaxing laws and rules for cliquette and general social intercourse. These modes of conduct that
: approval of society and receive its sanction are customs. In the words of Maclver and Page. “The socially accredited ways of acting are the customs of society.” The existence of customs that provide set rules for conduct preclude the necessity of repetition in thinking on these subjects. What actually happens is that the individual usually avoids all thinking on these subjects and prefers unthinking imitation of custom to exhausting cogitation. These customs are handed down by cach generation to its successor, if necessary with the appropriate modifications and the changes wrought in them by change in social conditions and circumstances. As a matter of course these customs are usually accepted as the most appropriate modes of behaviour and it is not considered decorous to violate them. In this way do customs control and give shape to the individual’s conduct. To put it in Bogardus’ words, “Customs and traditions are group accepted techniques of control that have become well established, that are taken for granted, and that have passed along from generation to generation.” The difference between customs and folkways, mores and institutions, is only one of degree: For example, marriage is an institution and the various performances in it such as the bridegroom carrying the bride over the threshold for the first time is a custom.
Importance of customs
Customs have their importance for society in the function that They perform of exercising control upon the conduct of individuals.
they mould an individual’s life in a matter that reduces the pressure They mould an individual’s life in a ma To which he is subject to the minimum. It usually happens that the individuals themselves have no objection to conforming to customs. They are motivated by a variety of factors butl one reason is that in doing so they avoid castigation from society and secondly they can manage to economics in their time and energy by avoiding much thinking that would otherwise become necessary. Customs serve to provide them
with a family clear guidance in most avenues of Conduct and action take just one example to illustrate this essential truth. Hindus have very
clear cut and precise customs that deal with questions that appear in day to day life, marriage, conduct in general etc. Their system of varnashrama-has added to the systematic nature of these customs. Hence, the Hindu does not have to-cogilale upon these matters and his life moves peaceably on the lines dictated by customs formed upon hundreds of years of experience. Ginsberg has observed correctly that customs perform the same function in our life as instincts perform in the life of living beings. Instincts guide in individual being in his struggle for existence. Customs shows the individual his way through social life. Man develops the habit of conforming to them from his very childhood and he follows their guidance without much ado. These customs come down to him in the form of social heritage and the same he hands over to his succeeding generation wien he decides to leave this world. It usually happens that most people run shy of violation customs. And it has been seen that harmful customs have continued for long-time because, for one, they are not treated as harmful by individuals, and for another, even if there is someone who has the reason to realize the underlying defect he usually has not the courage to say so or to openly violate it. Only exceptional people muster up the courage to contradict and finally change customs, and this they have to do against heavy odds and the stiffest denunciation. Sometimes they even siand in danger of being deprived of their very lives. But gradually every one comes to accept the new custom, and it is in this manner that customs change. But this change does not deprive them of their influence in controlling any individual’s social conduct.
Q. 5. What is tradition ? Distinguish it from custom and elaborate its importance.
What is Tradition?
Traditions form an important part of man’s social heritage. Tradition is inclusive of all those social laws that are handed down from one generation to another. Traditions keep alive the knowledge and beliefs of the group. It is in the form of tradition that the beliefs, habits. thoughts and tradition of the group are transferred from one generation to another. It is in this manner that tradition continues over long periods of time covering many generations. In the words of Ginsberg. “By Tradition is meant the sum of all the ideas, habits and customs that
belong to a people and are transmitted from one generation to another.” In this manner, in the form of tradition, one generation receives from its predecessor such things as diet, habit, mode of living, folkways, mode of conduct, beliefs, fashion, etc. It is in this way that tradition serves to maintain a link between the various generations. Tradition and customs
Tradition and custom are not identical.’ Customs comprise of socially accepted modes of conduct whereas traditions are the customs that the society inherits from its preceding social groups from which it is derived. Custom denotes the public modes of conduct or functioning. Tradition is more concerned with ideas and modes of belief. Distinguishing between custom and tradition Ross observes correctly, “By custom is meant the transmission of a way of doing, by tradition is meant the transmission of a way of thinking or believing.” Importance of Tradition
The foregoing description of tradition makes its importance in social and private lise fairly clear. This importance can be condensed in the following manner –
1. Traditions are Specific Modes of Conduct. The presence of traditions that relate to modes of behaviour the various spheres of society is necessary so that the individual who is faced with actions has the facility of guidance. He can resort to the very definite modes of behaviour in that field with the result that he does not have to think ever and even about his conduct. There is much advantage in this, since it effects a saving in time besides avoiding much possible mental conflict. He derives much guidance from this in his conduct in the various aspects to his life.
2. Traditions of Approved Modes of Conduct. It is not possible to arrive at really adequate rules and laws of conduct in, connection with the really importance issues of life with only a little experience to refer to. One very important issue in life is marriage and the personal experience of an individual is rather inadequate if one is to decide correctly the time, age, circumstances in which it is really advisable to marry to the best advantage. Matters of such gravity and import require the experience and knowledge of ages. Any law that can be of much use for such important things must be based upon experimentation over the ages. Evidently, it is only tradition that can prove efficacious in
3. Sense of Security of is Implicit in Tradition. Each and every
social law creates certain actions and reactions in different situations. In this conflict, only those rules and regulations survive the difficult test that are found to be advantageous and successful. These then continue from one generation to another in the form of traditions, in this way.
& tradition engenders a sense of security and comfort.
4. Economy of Time and Effort in Learning. When modes of behaviour are borrowed from tradition their learning consumes less time and energy since such borrowing avoids the necessity of taking the longer method of trial and error. The energy thus saved can be used for other creative purposes.
5. Synthesis and Conformity in Collective Conduct. In this way traditions serve to maintain a synthesis and conformity in the behaviour of individual members of society. This strengthens the social organisation.
6. Development of National Character. In national life much importance attaches to national traditions. To these traditions is attached the sense of the nation’s greatness and when all the members of the nation choose to emulate the tradition, national character develops. This further makes the nation more organised and systematic.
7. Tradition Maintains the Organisation and System in Society. Try to imagine a society which has no traditions. Each and every member of such a society will have to form his own beliefs and rules for conduct in the various compartments of life on the basis of his individual knowledge and experience and intelligence. Even if he makes a success of it, There ill be considerable conflict between the members and the social system which is likely to be disturbed. In this way, tradition helps to keep the system of society intact. The result is that society remains organised and maintains its continuity. Social and Biological Tradition
The above description makes clear the importance of tradition in life and behaviour. So far the description has been limited to social tradition which differs from biological tradition. Biological tradition consists in the physical characteristics such as height, skin, bodily structure, that are handed down to each successive generation. On the other hand, social tradition consists in customs, folkways, beliefs, morals, etc. In this way there is a fundamental difference between biological and social traditions. In biological heredity or tradition man is one and similar. But because of social tradition the individuals in society differ from each other, showing individuality and peculiarity. Both have their own importance in the life of the individual.