Download IGNOU BSOE 142 Solved Free Assignment 2023-24

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BSOE 142


IGNOU BSOE 142 Solved Free Assignment

BSOE 142 Solved Free Assignment July 2023 & January 2024


Q. 1. In what way do girls develop gendered identity in families? Discuss with reference to the viewpoint of Leela Dube.

Ans. In article ‘On the Construction of Gender: Hindu Girls in Patrilineal India’, Dube examines family rituals, ceremonies, language, and practice to understand how girls develop gendered identities.

She studied Hindu females and her own socialisation. Culturally created gender inequalities are always seen as biological, she says.

She uses the ‘Seed and Earth’ concept. She’s used this example in various studies to explain gender interactions.

This powerful topic has been examined in Women’s Studies. Understanding women as passive receptacles leads to their secondary status. “Man supplies the seed, while woman offers the field that nurtures it.

“A child has his father’s blood”. In the natal group, transferability and non-functionality are emphasised, but in the marital family, instrumentality is. This unequal societal system is seen as nature’s arrangement of men and women in procreation.

She discusses how gender roles are reflected in family structures and kinship, which govern recruitment, marital residence, and family rearrangement. Caste affects these.

She shows how girls are made aware of their secondary status using idioms and expressions in different languages. A Telugu proverb says, “Raising a daughter is like watering another’s plant” (Dube, 1988: WS12).

In her work, she presents various examples of how girls are valued before menarche. She discusses how Durga Puja in Bengal and Gauri Puja in Karnataka emphasise girls’ transient status in their natal household and short stays there after marriage.

In many sections of the country, honouring and feeding virgin girls (pre-menarche) emphasises women’s feminine role and contrasts with the ‘dangerous’ post- menarche stage.

She says female sexuality is limited since their futures are tied to being wives and mothers. A woman’s greatest accomplishment is motherhood. Marriage brings parenthood. These two goals are primary (Dube, 1988: WS 14).

Women as caste gatekeepers impacted girls’ socialisation. She introduced this theory and utilised it to justify violence against women. Women as boundary markers became ‘repositories of honour,’ thus, violence.

Social hierarchy challenged women’s rights. Leela Dube also debated sex-selective abortions and abuse against women.

Her writings in this subject amalgamated as a response to Dharma Kumar’s Economic and Political weekly piece regarding amniocentesis.

Her comments included examples from South Asian cultures concerning a child’s desire.

She explained female infanticide in diverse communities and its ramifications, such as polyandry, kidnapping of women, etc. This debate enhanced her prior assertions about women’s status in South Asia.

Dube said women in Southeast Asia have more freedom to act and make decisions than in South or East Asia (Dube, 1983: 1633).

Using studies of fertility, family planning, and population control, she suggested that the value provided to women secures the birth and survival of a female child, not the ‘demand-supply principle.

She questioned economic incentives for having children, believing they would prolong social-structural arrangements that need to be modified and reaffirm people’s ideas and values (Dube, 1983, 1634).

Q. 2. Explain Verrier Elwin’s contribution to the understanding of tribal identity.

Ans. Elwin’s status among Indian academics and political activists is contentious. Some criticize his works and tribal identity stance. Elwin had numerous fans, including Jawaharlal Nehru, India’s first Prime Minister.

In 1954, Nehru suggested him for tribal affairs post in India’s north-east. Elwin continued to write tribal policy materials.

Elwin’s publications A Philosophy for NEFA’ (1957) and ‘A new Deal for Tribal India’ (1963) were popular during his time in the north-east.

Nehru’s “tribal panchsheel” speech was written by Verrier Elwin. To comprehend Elwin’s engagement in conflicts over tribal identity and national integration in post-Independent India, it is helpful to contextualize identification and identity-based movements for political and cultural autonomy within the tribal discourse.

According to the ASI survey conducted in the tribal belt in central India, the movements can be categorized into four major
(i) Movements for political autonomy;
(ii) Agrarian and forest based movements;
(iii) Sanskritization processes;
(iv) Cultural movements based on script and language.

Most of these fights were about land and forest rights, but they were also religious and cultural. Because of the relationship between economy and culture, denying forest and land access affects community and identity.

Some communities are trying to reclaim the tribal status they lost to Sanskritization initiatives as a symbol of their identity. Developing a script and building a tribal literature may be part of a drive to define and assert tribal identity.

This development in Chhotanagpur may be linked to the 1920s, when the burgeoning tribal middle-classes demanded political autonomy and strengthened revivalism in tribal literature, which tried to preserve and recreate many cultural markers.

Post-independence tribal movements focused more on cultural identity than land and forests. Civic society organizations helped tribal communities mobilize around identification, civil, and political rights.

Identifying tribal communities depends on how we trace their origins and etymologies.

Sahay notes that several tribes have two sets of names-a neighbour-known name and an internal name.

Both types of titles allude to certain characteristics or qualities of a given tribe, and some are despised by the tribes as uncomplimentary.

Finally, the tribals as a whole are establishing a new identity as adivasi (original resident) or vanyajati (community living in jungle).

Local terms show their identity in connection to their geographical and biological surroundings (Sahay1977).

All of these identification groups fit Indian society and politics uniquely. Most tribal communities are geographically secluded. Some tribal tribes live in undeveloped areas of plains states, yet non-tribals regularly exploit them.

In most Indian states, Adivasis weaken the regional linguistic group’s cohesiveness by adopting ethnic identities.

While understanding identification movements towards tribal autonomy, we must study how they approach the question of nation and national integration.

The state contributes to identity-based movements by structuring power and governance institutions that define and acknowledge people based on their identities.

Roy Burman asks if tribal upheaval is symptomatic of a broader challenge tribal India poses to non-tribal social and political structures.

If a challenge exists, it must also be worldwide. Burman uses various characteristics to describe tribal instability and autonomy movements.

Verrier Elwin’s writings on tribal communities in pre and post-independent India were essential for anthropology and policy-making.

In the 1940s and 1950s, Elwin’s opponents participated in intense polemics about tribal identity. Elwin’s distance from Indian nationalism and protectionist approach to tribal communities angered sociologists and anthropologists.

Elwin’s initial challenge was integrating indigenous populations into Hinduism. Elwin’s opponent was G.S. Ghurye. Ghurye aspired to bring indigenous communities into Hinduism.

He accused Elwin of purposely segregating tribals from Hindu civilization and ‘isolating tribal groups in mountains, jungles, and other isolated locations, where they remained poor and backward.

Ghurye criticized Elwin for advocating distancing tribal people from Indian nationalism and the rising Indian nation, which is primarily Hindu.

Elwin said tribal communities have had a collective community spirit, unlike Hinduism’s caste structure. They had a close relationship with nature and gender equality.

Elwin’s interaction with social reformers who wanted to bring in prohibition and outlaw tribal dances was equally controversial; he was accused of being ‘anti-reformist’ Elwin rejected social reformers’ ban.

For him, ethnocentrism has no place in social transformation. He pushed for the preservation and maintenance of unique tribal cultural expressions.

opposed Christian missionaries who claimed converting tribal people to Christianity would bring modernism and development.

Elwin condemned Christian and Hindu reformers for being intolerant of tribal culture, art, rituals, and dancing, undermining communal morale, and making new converts ashamed of their customs (Elwin 1941, 1943, for a detailed account of these controversies, see Guha 1996).

Elwin eventually found a middle ground between Ghurye’s assimilationism and his own isolation of tribal communities from the rest of India.

In Elwin’s tales, violence and abuse by non-tribal outsiders, the state, or other external interventions destroy tribal structures and customs (Padel 1995).

Elwin’s publications supported tribal concerns, especially the autonomy of tribal culture and identity.

For him, state involvement into tribal lives on development issues must be in line with community interests and priorities. His effect on Nehru was shown in the tribal panchsheel’s substance and articulation, which reflected tribal voices.


Q. 3. What did Rankrishna Mukherjee mean by ‘sociology of Indian sociology”? Explain.

Ans. Mukherjee’s ‘Sociology of Indian Sociology’ (1978) is a preliminary, but crucial attempt to comprehend Indian Sociology’s evolution. This work also examines sociology’s methodological evolution in India.

People of every society, as- well-as those concerned with it, but not belonging to it, need to understand about its past, present, and future functioning.

Indian society is no exception. The book traces the history of Indian sociology from the Vedic period. It splits this development between pre-sociological and sociological periods.

Pre-Ramkrishna Mukherjee social and sociological reference groups represent these two periods. Pre-sociological reference group includes social philosophers, policy-makers, policy promoters, and proto-sociologists.

Pioneers (1920s-1940s), Modernizers (1950s), Insiders (1960s), Pace-makers (1970s), and Non-Conformists (1980s) are sociological reference groups (1970s).

Indian society always has social thinkers. Social reformers are policy-makers who care only about the target society.

Like social philosophers, they limit their focus on social concerns to place-time-people dimensions of variation. Administrators and information-gatherers promote policies.

Their concentration on social issues is limited, unlike social philosophers or policymakers. Proto-sociologists from established social science disciplines view social issues differently than the other three groups.

Indian modernizers developed. They rejected the historical approach as pseudoscientific and accepted structural-functional. The Insiders were interested in behavioral sciences in the 1970s.

They tried to consolidate cognitive historical and Marxist trends from the pioneers and modernized.

Non-conformists and pace-makers have different ideologies, research concepts, and methods from Modernizers and Insiders.

Mukherjee analyzes this process by asking what, how, why, what will be and what should it be? He says that social issue should be analyzed from these five positive and negative perspectives.

He adds that these five questions must be asked in order to objectively understand any variable phenomenon. The reference groups’ emphasis on the five questions differs.

Q. 4. Present Joshi’s oritique of ‘The Remembered Village’ study.

Ans. According to Joshi, The Remembered Village suffers from a failure to provide appropriate place to people’s economic organization. Lower castes are inspired by upper castes to strive for upward social mobility.

One of the chief means by which lower castes move up the ladder of social stratification is the process of Sanskritization.

Srinivas explains the process of Sanskritization in following words, ‘A low caste was able, in a generation or two, to rise to a higher position in the hierarchy by adopting vegetarianism and teetotalism and by sanskritizing its rituals and pantheon.

In short it took over, as far as possible, the customs, rites and beliefs of the Brahmins and the adoption of the Brahminic way of life by a low caste seems to have been frequent, though, theoretically forbidden.

This process has been called “Sanskritization” in preference to “Brahminization” as certain Vedic rites are confined to the Brahmins and the two other twice-born castes’.

They followed the Brahminical way of life, mainly in observing, among others, stringent marriage code, adherence to purity-pollution restrictions, taking religious vows, and reading of Sanskritic tales and stories.

The economic aspect offsets the impact of the ruling caste on the social life of the lower castes.

Joshi (1996:138) critiques Srinivas’s interpretation of the Rampura situation, in following words, ‘However, with the pace of change accelerating, the village and the town getting reintegrated, new opportunities, apart from broadening the scope of upward mobility, also enlarged the scope of economic disparity between members of the dominant caste’.

Q. 5. Discuss A. R. Desai’s view on role of the state in capitalist transformation in India.

Ans. In analysing the post-independence period, the State’s involvement in social and political transformation, especially rural transformation, and the path of development are recurring themes.

Contrary to nationalist hopes, the State begins a capitalist makeover after independence. His work focused on history.

His earlier work, “Social Background of Indian Nationalism”, pioneered Marxian historical technique, while his subsequent work concentrated on the class character of the State and the nature of classes that characterize society and their connection to the State.

He ties the post-independence route of development to the nationalist movement, the capitalist class’s effect on it, and the choices made during the movement.

Desai’s edited volumes, “Rural Sociology in India” (1969) and “Peasant Struggles in India” (1979), map changes in rural society over decades.

In “Peasant Struggles in India”, he analyzes the peasantry’s participation in “Unconventional Anthropology of the ‘Traditional’ Peasantry,” stressing Eric Wolf’s “Peasant Wars in the Twentieth Century”.

Desai weaves information across periods and regions to emphasize the State’s primary socio-economic policies and processes, emphasizing on their impact on peasants.

The State focused on rural reform during the first three decades after independence. Desai analyzes state strategies aimed at transforming pre-capitalist rural structures into capitalist ones. State interference changed agrarian society and relationships.

Agrarian policy aimed to eliminate parasitic landlordism, Zamindari, and create a class of agricultural capitalists, rich farmers, and middle peasant proprietors directly tied to the State.

This was accomplished through ‘development’ schemes and land legislations, resulting in a class of agricultural capitalists, rich peasants, and a pauperized, starving, landless rural proletariat.


Q. 6. Outline the criteria used by N.K. Bose to classify tribal communities in India.

Ans. According to Bose, these two models of social structure have coexisted in India for a very long period. He attributes this fact to the country’s lengthy history.

The first one was more advanced technologically, had a wider scope, and had a more intricate organizational structure than the second one.

The increased technological efficiency and the right afforded to all tribes to exercise their different customs even while under a hierarchical organization were the main selling points for the tribal communities when they were considering adopting it as their system of government.

As an anthropologist, Bose was interested not only in illuminating a particular cultural pattern but also in determining the theory that underpinned the pattern.

The idea proved to be an invaluable tool for gaining a grasp of how society functioned in practice.

In addition, in order to validate his hypotheses on the structure of Hindu society, Bose searches for evidence within the field of indology.

He has taken material from a wide number of sources, including the epics, the Smritis, and many Buddhist writings, amongst others.

He makes the remark that the processes that may be recreated by reading sacred literature are, for the most part, the same as those that can be recognized by an ethnologist via observations conducted in the field.

As an illustration of the efforts made by people from lower castes to embrace the habit of the twice-born, he uses a narrative from the Ramayana.

He cites the story as an example. From his reading of the epics and the Smritis, Bose attempts to piece together how the ‘varna’ system was originally conceived.

He discovers in them an ongoing effort to explain the ranks inhabited by various groups with regard to their point of origin and the functions they perform.

In addition to this, he provides some high-level overviews of the king’s responsibilities according to the various sources.

The authority of the monarch was flexible enough to fit the wide variety of traditions that were followed by the several groups that came together to form the wider civilization.

According to Bose, the distinctive quality of Hindu society may be attributed, in large part, to the special kind of economic structure that forms the foundation of the community’s traditions and practices.

The old system was organized, in many respects, around the life of the village as the fundamental unit of economic activity. In his discussion of life in the hamlet, Bose zeroes in on the intricate system of work distribution that existed there.

The inhabitants generated the majority of what they consumed, and as a result, the village functioned as an independent entity to some degree. However, the village’s self-sufficiency could only be described as relative, not absolute.

What was not produced locally might be purchased at weekly markets, fairs, or pilgrim centers, all of which were frequented by people from far and wide. These markets and centers also hosted festivals.

Additionally, Bose provides some insights on city life, mostly by borrowing from the writings of Vatsyayna, an old Indian philosopher.

Q. 7. Outline D.P. Mukerji’s view on the role of tradition in Indian society?

Ans. D. P. Mukerji analysed Indian history dialectically. Tradition, modernity, colonialism, nationalism, and individualism all interact dialectically. Mukerji believed tradition fueled culture.

Tradition fed the people. They weren’t aimless. In India, tradition has become a burden. People idealized and worshipped it too.

Uncritical people lead to cultural stagnation. Individuals may revitalize culture. A person is neither free nor unfree.

A healthy personality must balance individuation and socialization. Sociation connects individuals to society. Individual freedom must be a creative manifestation of tradition, not anarchy.

Q. 8. What was the approach of Ghurye in studying caste in Indian society? Explain.

Ans. Ghurye characterizes caste as a social arrangement peculiar to Indian civilisation, in contrast to other social groups.

Castes in Hindu society differ in respectability and social engagement. Ghurye identified six caste system traits.

Segmental division of society: Caste society is divided into different groups whose membership is determined by birth, not selection. Castes are discrete, separate social worlds inside greater civilization.

Hierarchy: This suggests a social structure with Brahmin at the top.

Restrictions on eating and social interaction: There are regulations about what food or drink a person may receive and from what castes.

Lower castes accept prepared food from any higher caste, while Brahmins and other castes do not. Ghurye cites certain castes’ pollution idea conveyed to upper castes.

Civil and religious disabilities and privileges of the different sections: Ghurye highlighted that the isolation of specific castes or a group of castes in a hamlet was one of the most evident indicators of civic advantages and disabilities in India.

Southern India has the strictest ceremonial purity and untouchability restrictions. Southern India has caste-restricted areas of towns and villages. Lower castes had their homes and building materials regulated.

Lack of unrestricted choice of occupation: Occupations are set by heredity. Castes couldn’t shift their usual jobs. All castes keep their occupations supreme and secret from other castes.

Upper castes like Brahmins can read holy writings, while others can’t. Untouchable occupations include bathroom sweeping, laundry, scavenging, etc. All castes have regulations about food, drink, and social contact.

Restriction of marriage: Castes marry within their own groupings. Outside-caste marriage is forbidden.

Q. 9. Explain Radhakamal Mukerjee’s use of anchiortive approach to urban social problems.

Ans. Mukerjee was also engaged in working-class issues. Industrialization in India has brought together individuals from different geographical and linguistic backgrounds.

Slum life influenced employees’ living circumstances in Mumbai, Kanpur, Kolkata, and Chennai.

Prostitution, gambling, and criminality flourished in early industrial slums. Dramatic adjustments were needed to improve employees’ economic and moral situations.

Many commercial enterprises and state organizations offer social support for employees nowadays. Central and State Governments have passed employer-binding laws.

Underemployed or temporary labourers continue to live in slums. Illicit booze and narcotics, violence, and deteriorating housing and municipal infrastructure are common in Indian slums.

Mukerjee’s understanding of the working class is pertinent to India’s industrial organization.

Q. 10. Compare the Bombay School with Lucknow School in the Discipline of Sociology.

Ans. Bombay School and Lucknow School were pioneers in professionalizing and institutionalizing sociology and anthropology in India. Indian and international instructors taught at both schools.

Both schools’ founders were nationalists. The nationalist fervor reflected in the works of some of them.

These essays praised Indian customs and used ancient books. G.S. Ghurye from Bombay School, and Radhakamal and Dhurjati Prasad Mukerjee from Lucknow School are mentioned.

One can also observe their passionate and strong desire to revitalize historic values, not in terms of revivalism, but to use them appropriately in current times.

Similarly, both schools shared certain theoretical threads. A.R. Desai’s Marxist perspective echoes Dhurjati Prasad Mukerji’s Marxological approach, though he didn’t like “dogmatic Marxism.”

Both schools include themes of tradition and modernity, but in distinct ways. Others, like Radhakamal Mukerjee and Dhurjati Prasad Mukerjee, called for a cultural synthesis between the two.

IGNOU BSOE 141 Solved Free Assignment 2023-24

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