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Sociology Class 11 Notes Chapter 3 Understanding Social Institutions


  • The word “family” has been taken from the Roman word “familus” meaning “servant”. In Roman law, the word denoted the group of producers and slaves and other servants as well as the members connected by common descent or marriage.
  • According to Burgess and Locke, “A group of persons united by ties of marriage, blood or adoption constituting a single household, interacting and inter-communicating with each other in their respective social rites of husband and wife, mother and father, son and daughter, brother and sister, creating a common culture.”

Characteristics of a Family

  • A mating relationship: A family comes into existence when a man and a woman establish a mating relation between them.
  • A form of marriage: A family requires a home, a householder, for its living. Without a dwelling place the task of child bearing and child rearing cannot be adequately performed.
  • A system of nomenclature: Every family is known by a name and has its own system of reckoning descent. Descent may be reckoned through the male line or through the female line. Usually the wife goes and joins her husband’s family in a patriarchal system and vice-versa in a matriarchal system.
  • An economic provision: Every family needs an economic provision to satisfy the economic needs. The head of the family carries on a certain profession and earns money to maintain the family.Thus it can be said that family is a biological unit employing institutionalised sex relationship between husband and wife. It is based on the fact of production and nurture of the child is its important function. It is a universal institution found in  every era and in every society.

Functions of Family:
According to Oghbum and Nimkoff, the functions of family can be divided into the following categories:

  • Affectional functions
  • Economic functions
  • Recreational functions
  • Protective functions
  • Religious functions
  • Educational functions

According to Read, the functions of the family are:

  • Race perpetuation
  • Socialization
  • Regulation and satisfaction of the sex needs
  • Economic function

According to Maciver and Page, the functions of the family can be divided into two categories:
1. Essential functions
2. Non- essential functions

1. Essential Functions

  • Satisfaction of sex needs: This is the first essential function which the family performs. Satisfaction of sex instincts brings the desire of life from the partnership among male and female. The modem family satisfies this instinct to a much greater degree than the traditional family. In the earlier traditional families the sexual act was almost always combined with reproduction and the fear of pregnancy and as a result prevented satisfaction. But in the modem family the invention of contraceptives and use of other birth control measures, places the concerned couple in a better position as it allows for satisfaction of sex instincts without fear of conception.
  • Production and rearing of children: The inevitable result of a sexual union is procreation. The task of race perpetuation has always been an important function of the family. It is an institution par excellence for the production and rearing of children. The function of child rearing is better performed today than in the past because now more skill and knowledge are devoted to the care of the unborn and the newborn child.
  • Provision of a home: The desire for home is a powerful incentive for a man and a woman to marriage. Man after the hard toil of the day returns home where in the midst of his wife and children he sheds off his fatigue. Though in modem times there are many hotels and clubs which also provide recreation to man, but the joy a man gets within the congenial circle of his wife, parents and children stands far above the momentary pleasure which is provided by clubs and hotels. Inspite of these other recreative agencies, the home is still the heaven and sanctuary where its members find comfort and affection.

2. Non-essential functions
The non- essential functions of a family are the following.

  • Economic: The family serves as an economic unit. In the pre-industrial, tribal and agrarian societies unit of production is the family. All members of the family equally contribute to the family occupation, such as cultivation, craft, cottage-industry, cattle-rearing etc. The family provides economic security to its members and looks after their primary needs such as food, security, clothing, shelter and also nurses them in unfavourable conditions.
  • Religious: Family is a centre for the religious learning as the children learn from their parents various religious virtues. The religious and moral training of children have always been bound with the home. Though formal religious education starts in the earliest years of schooling,the family still furnishes the matrix of religious idea, attitudes, and practices. It is in the family that the basic notions of God, morality and salvation are acquired during childhood.
  • Education: The child learns the first letter under the guidance of the parents. The joint family was the center for vocational education as the children from the early childhood were associated with family tasks. The modem family has delegated the task of vocational education to technical institutes and colleges.
  • Social: The family is an important unit of society. It imparts learning to the individual in those subjects that can make him become an ideal member of society. Family carries out socialization of the individual. It also keeps the social heritage intact and hands it over to the generations to come. It is also an agency of social control. The family norms control the  conduct of the individual.
  • Psychological: The family also satisfies the psychological and emotional needs of its members. The members get love, sympathy and emotional support in the family.

Classification of Family
Sociologists have classified family on the following basis:

  • Size
  • Residence
  • Ancestors
  • Power and authority
  • Marriage
  • Chronology
  • Social ecology

On the basis of size they were divided into:

  • Nuclear Family: Where a husband and wife and their biological children live together, it is a nuclear family. The compulsion of living separately in modem industrial environment has fastened the growth of these families.
  • Joint Family: Such families include many units of families living together i.e. people of many generations. They all live under one roof, share a common kitchen, have a common economic source. Agrarian economy, traditional social organizations, rural community, religion have played an important role in preserving the joint family system in India.
  • Extended Family: In this type of family, there may seem to be small independent units, structurally but functionally they work as one big family sharing a common descent.

Features of Joint Family

  • At least three generations living together
  • Common ancestors
  • Common duties
  • Common residence
  • Common property
  • Common kitchen
  • Head of the family-“karta”, and his authority over the family members.
  • Traditional occupations

Factors Responsible for Disintegration of Joint Family:

  • Industrialization
  • Extension of communication and transport
  • Decline in agricultural and village trades
  • Impact of the west
  • Lack of entertainment and recreations
  • Fragmentation of land holdings

On the basis of residence, there are two types of families:

  1. Patrilocal: In these families the bride resides with her husband’s family after marriage. Majority of families in the world belong to this type.
  2. Matrilocal: In these families the bridegroom resides with the family of his wife after marriage. This system is prevalent in the Khasi, Garo and Jaintia tribes of Meghalaya.

On the basis of ancestors, there are two types of family:

  1. Patrilineal: In such families the ancestors are men. Most of the families in the world belong to the patrilineal system. Lineage and succession are determined on the basis of the father.
  2. Matrilineal: In these families the ancestors are women. The lineage and succession are determined on the basis of the mother.

Power and Authority:
On the basis of power and authority the families are divided into two types:

  • Patriarchal: In this type of family, the father is the head of the family and the familial power and authority rest in father.
  • Matriarchal: In these families, the familial authority lies with the mother and she is the head of the family.

Basis of Marriage:
On the basis of marriage there are two types of families:
In this one man is married to one woman i.e. one spouse to each individual.

In this for every individual more than one spouse is allowed.

  • Polygynous: In this a man has more than one wife e.g. Muslims.
  • Polyandrous: In this a woman has more than one husband e.g. Kinnaur area, Sherpas etc.


In this there are three types of families:

  1. Ancient families
  2. Medieval families
  3. Modem families

Social Ecology:
On the basis of this there are two families:

  • Rural family
  • Urban family


  • Marriage is an institution which admits men and women to family life. It is a stable relationship in which a man and a woman are socially committed to have children and the right to have children implying the rights to sexual relations.
  • Definition: According to Haston and Hanks, “Marriage is the approved social pattern whereby two or more persons of opposite sex establish a family”.
  • According to Nuntberg, “Marriage consists of the rules and regulations which define the rights, duties and privileges of husband and wife.”

Characteristics of Marriage:

  • Marriage is a specific relationship between two individuals of the opposite sex and it is based on mutual rights and obligations.
  • As a system of rules marriage is an institution .The structure of family is built by the mutual relationships of the individuals.
  • In Islam, marriage is considered a contract while in Hinduism it is considered to be a sacrament religious activity.
  • Marriage regulates sex relationship.
  • Procreation, bringing up children, familial love, economic co-operation are other necessary elements of marriage.
  • Society institutionally recognizes sexual gratification through marriage. Thus marriage renders sexual gratification patterns based on law.
  • The couples fulfil their mutual obligations on the basis of customs or rules accepted by law.
  • Validity is given to procreation by marriage. Its aim is to form the family, bring up children and educate them.
  • All societies have their own customs and systems of marriage. In almost all societies marriage and religious activities are connected with each other.
  • There are certain symbols of marriage such as rings, special clothes, special sings in front of the house, vermilion etc.

Problems related to Marriage:
Various forms, customs and conventions of marriage are prevalent in India based on the religion, caste, tribe, region etc.
Certain problems are common and concerned with the majority of Indian population. Following are the three most striking problems:

  • Child Marriage: In the early times children of very small ages were married. The causes for this were many but some have been endogamy,religious conservatism, joint families, sati system, dowry system etc. The Hindu Marriage Act,1955 had fixed the marriageable age for a girl at 18 years and that for a boy at 21 years. Now the situation has improved in urban areas and semi-industrial areas. But it is almost the same in rural areas.
  • Widow Remarriage: It was prohibited by the Hindus as it was consideration against the departed soul of the husband.

The restrictions on widow remarriage gave rise to many problems like:

  • Immorality among widows
  • Sexual exploitation of child widow
  • Increase in number of prostitutes
  • General lowering of women status in society
  • Large scale conversion of Hindu widows to Islam and Christianity.

Widow remarriage is actually not harmful from any angle. It is ethically justified and healthy. It also gives fundamental rights to the young women who have been widowed, disowned by their husbands in the prime of their age. Most of the social reformers fought for widow remarriage. Notable among them were Ishwar Chandra Vidyasager whose effort saw the enactment of the Hindus-Widow Remarriage Act in 1856. This Act legalised the remarriage of Hindu widows.

  • Dowry: The dictionary defines dowry as, “the money, goods or estates which a woman brings to her husband in marriage”.

Therefore, dowry refers to the property and amount of money one receives in marriage by the groom’s family. The chief evil of this system lies in the compulsion that is employed to extract these things from the bride’s family much against their capacity, willingness and desire. Ill-fated brides face a lot of atrocities at the hands of their greedy in-laws. Dowry is inhuman, arbitrary and anti-social. Therefore it must be fought from all angles. The efforts of the conscientious people of the society, reformers and women’s liberation groups have led to the forming of anti- dowry law. But even the law has not been able to contain the greed of the dowry demanding people.

Definition: According to Murdock, “Every adult in every human society is generally related to two nuclear families. The first of these is the family in which he is born and which includes his parents, brothers and sisters. The second type of family is that which the individual sets up through marriage and which includes husband, wife and their children. The relationship formed by both these types of family ancestors and successors are called kinship.”
Basis of Kinship
According to Harry M. Johnson, kinship has six important bases:

  • Sex: The terms “brother” and “sister” indicate not only the biological relations but also indicate the sex of the blood relation.
  • Generation: The terms “father” and “son” indicate two generations on one hand and close blood relation on the other.
  • Closeness: The relationship with the son-in- law and father’s sister’s husband is based only on closeness and not on any blood relationship. These relationships are almost as close as the blood relationship, if not closer.
  • Blood relation: The kinship based on blood relations is divided into lineage such as grandfather, father, son, grandson etc.
  • Division: All kinship relations are generally divided into two branches:
    • Father’s father-paternal grandfather
    • Mother’s father-maternal grandfather
      There are others like brother’s daughter and sister’s daughter, son’s son and daughter’s son.
  • Binding thread: The binding thread of certain relations is close e.g. the relationship of a father-in -law is based on the binding thread either of the husband or that of the wife.

Importance of Kinship Relations:
Kinship relations have an important place in the social structure.

  • The system of production and consumption, political power and authority are determined in tribal and rural societies through kinship relations.
  • On the occasions of marriage and family functions the importance of kinship relations is very great.
  • Through kinship it is decided who can marry with whom and where and which marital relationships are taboo.
  • Kinship determines the family life, relationships like gotra, kula, clan, etc.
  • On the basis of kinship the rights and obligations of the members in all the sacraments and religious practices are determined.
  • Kinship reiterates the solidarity relationships.

In kinship system, the behavioural patterns between two relations are determined by certain rules which are called kinship usage. Few of them are as follows:

  • Avoidance usage: In some relations a safe distance should be maintained between close relatives e.g. father-in-law, daughter-in-law.
  • Joking relationship: The objective of this is development of close relationship e.g. Jija- sali or sala-bahnoi.
  • Teknonymy: In order to talk to one person to another person, sign is used as a medium. e.g. in Indian villages wife is not allowed to call her husband so she may address him as Guddu’s papa or if her husband’s name is Surya then she may point out towards the sun to tell her husband’s name.

Understanding Social Institutions:
What is a social institution? :
It is a structure of society that is organized to meet the needs of the people mainly through well established patterns. There are certain rules and regulations and norms in every institution.


  • Emile Durkheim said, “Education is the action exercised by older generations upon those who are not yet ready for social adult life.”
  • Education is everlasting and lifelong.
  • There is no restriction, everyone can be educated.
  • There are two types of education:

Informal: Everything you learn in an informal manner from your family, friends, etc.

  • You learn values, norms, customs etc. also from the society.
  • It is usually a small group which teaches us in more oral communication.
  • This never stops and continues throughout a person’s life.
  • It is conveyed through observation, imitation, interactions and doing what others, want you to do.
  • Family/friends also teach you manners/etiquettes and teach you how to behave in society.

Formal: Proper rules and regulations, happen in a formal institution with a fixed curriculum.

  • Trained professionals, teachers are paid a salary to teach us.
  • There are written examinations, infrastructure and facilities.
  • It has a clear-cut scheme of teaching and developing knowledge and personality of the student through desired means to achieve a desired goal and there is a written set of aids like books, blackboards etc.
  • Involves departing knowledge through systematic and organized mannerisms. — Refers to school and college education-formalized and structured set up.

Objectives of Education (How do you do it?):

  • To acquire formal /informal knowledge.
  • Mould the personality of the child in moral, social, intellectual aspects.
    Aim (Goal): To integrate you into the society and increase efficiency of individuals to blend into society. Moulds personality of child.
Simple Society (Rural) Modern Society (Urban)
(i) More informal education. (i) More formal education.
(ii) Learn mainly from family/elder etc. in the village. (ii) Learn mainly from teachers, specialized trained people in the town.
(iii)Division of labour is based on age/sex. (iii) Division of labour is based on qualifications and skills.
(iv) Oral communication. (iv) Oral and written.
(v) Usually the whole family is involved in the same work i.e. agriculture (v) Work place and family are separate units.
(vi) Values are laid down by Panchayat (rules/norms). (vi) Universal values are followed (equality, freedom of expression etc.)

Functions of Education:

  • Gives us knowledge
  • Communication of information
  • Moulds personality and builds character
  • Integrates the individual with the society


  • Makes us aware of our environment and surroundings.
  • Helps individuals to realize their potential and contribute to society in a meaningful way.
  • Contributes to the development (social, economic, political) of a country in all fields.
  • Develops a national thinking and reasoning of people due to exposure. It helps totake better decisions.
  • Prepares an individual to have a strong footing (base) for a better life.
  • Preservation and transmission of culture from generation to generation.
  • Education helps in occupational and spatial mobilities (migrate for better jobs etc.)

Unified set of beliefs and practices related to sacred things which unite the people into a single moral community. It exists in all society though it varies from region to region,country to country etc.

Features of Religion:

  • Belief in supernatural entity: Every religion has its own rituals, beliefs, customs, ceremonies etc. Material objects are offered to God, differing from religion to religion e.g. milk, fruit, money etc. There are a community of believers.
  • Every religion has its own ‘sects’.
  • Concept of sacredness: All followers have deep faith in God’s blessings and any material object connected with God is considered sacred.
  • Almost all religions believe in the concept of heaven, hell and re-incarnation. There are some plants and animals which some religions worship e.g. cow, peepal, tulsi. All the rituals which are connected with religion and their purpose is different from daily habits e.g. you can go to school without a bath but for doing pooja you need to be pure and clean-bathed. There is a feeling of awe, respect and recognition associated with supernatural entity.

Differences between Primitive and Modern Religion:

Primitive Religion Modern Religion
1. Tribal —when man came into being. Origin can not be traced 1. Origin of religion can be traced. It does not matter how old it is.
2. No particular founder. 2. Founders of religions, Jesus-Christianity, Mahavir-Jainism.
3. No holy book. Transmitted orally through little tradition. 3. There are holy books, knowledge, beliefs are transmitted through texts
4. Descriptive but not explanatory. Usually worship nature and animals, without a reason practised in good faith. They worship those who will give them something. 4. There is an explanation for what we worship. Highly intellectual-details are given for every aspect.
5. It is faith that needs no interrelation,      debate or discussion. It is simple. 5. There are a group of specialists (priests, monks, who devote their lives to propagate and preserve the religious sayings and have debates on it.

Functions of Religion:

  • It brings all people together and gives them a sense of unity. It gives them comfort, hope and a support system. It teaches them discipline and compassion.
  • It also provides consolation and re-consolation at a time of stress.
  • When you confess something to God it gives you a sense of relief and you ask for forgiveness.

Disadvantages of Religion:

  • Greater conflict between communities leads to communalism. It can cause communal riots e.g. Gujrat 2002, Hindu- Muslim riots and 1984 Anti Sikh riots.
  • Sometimes there may be very orthodox followers (fundamentalists) that can cause harm which leads to clashes between different groups.
  • Religion can force you to do things which you do not want to.

Aspects of Religion:

  • Personal: The individual practices, customs etc. that a person does on his own. Own set of beliefs related to religion, e.g fasting at home.
  • Community: Celebrations or poojas which happen when many people gather together and perform a ritual e.g. celebrating Eid in mosque.
Religion Place of worship Holy book God
Islam Mosque The Quran Allah
Hinduism Temple The Bhagvadgeeta
Christianity Church The Bible Jesus

Religion And Role:
Religion has a private as well as public role too.

  • Private: When the role of religion is restricted to private life and not mixed with public life.
  • Secularisation: Importance of religion remains within private life and is not mixed with public life e.g. others can’t be forced to do pooja.
  • Public: The participation in all community activities and rituals related to religion is the public role of religion.

(a) Tenets of Hindusim:

  • Dharma
  • Karma
  • Moksha

(b) Social organisation – Division of society:

  • Brahmins
  • Kshatriyas
  • Shudras
  • Vaishyas

(c) Purusarth—What man is supposed to do:

  • Dharma – moral duty
  • Karma-sexual gratification after marriage
  • Artha-eam a livelihood
  • Moksha-salvation

(d) Ashramas – Four stages in a man’s life:

  1. Brahmacharya – Bachelorhood (get educated at home or in gurukul).
  2. Grihastha – To get married, have kids, settle down in a house .
  3. Vannprastha – Beginning of retirement life-get ready to move into the forest, finish responsibilities etc. Gradually withdraws from social life.
  4. Sanyas – Praying for moksha, complete giving up of materialistic things, living in the forest, waiting for death.

(e) Sacraments/Samaskaras

  • Initiation – All ceremonies done when a child is bom e.g. white thread worn by Brahmins, mundan, naamkaran.
  • Marriage ceremonies – Rituals etc.
    e.g Sangeet Mehendi, Manjha, Nikah, reception, rings, rokali.
  • Death ceremony/anniversary – Chautha. Many rites are performed by the son if father/mother dies to see that the soul rests in peace.

(f) Rituals .

  • Life Cycle Rituals: Birth, marriage, death [same as above],
  • Domestic Rituals for your family members:
    e.g. Teej, Bhai dooj, Karva Chauth, Raksha Bandhan.
  • Annual Rituals-Once a year they are celebrated e.g. Janamashtami, Diwali, Holi.

(g) Pilgrimage-Go to your holy places to wash away sins, fulfill wishes and show your devotion to God.
e.g. Vaishnodevi, Varanasi, Badrinath etc.
Islam – It came to India in 7th century AD. Islam means surrender to God.
Islamisation – Conversion of people into Islam (mostly lower caste did it to avoid discrimination) during the Mughal period.

  • HAJJ—It is believed that a person goes on a Hajj to get his sins forgiven by Allah. It has to be performed with sincerity and devotion.
  • Ramzan—9th month of the Lunar calender-the holiest month. On the 28/29th day, Eid is celebrated. Men, wpmen and children fast from dawn to dusk. When the new moon is sighted, Eid-ul-fitar is celebrated. Men go to the mosque for community prayers.

Islam has 2 sects:

  1. Shias-Imam,
  2. Sunni’s-Khalif

Heads. We borrowed a few negative things from Muslims e.g. Parda system. They borrowed caste system from Hindus.

  • ‘Ummah’—Totality of the people who are Muslims and who follow the sayings of Prophet Muhammad. It creates an Islamic brotherhood.
  • Muslims of the whole world believe in a common God.

Foundations of Islam:

  • Quran: The holy book contains the words of Allah which He revealed to Prophet Muhammad. It is considered divine, holy and sacred not only in meaning but also in structure.
    Monetheism: Belief in one God.
  • Prophet Muhammad: Considered to be a perfect creation of Allah, perfect human being and the best interpreter of the Quran.
  • Hadith: A book of sayings dictated by Prophet Muhammad which includes the recordings of his sayings by his followers. It is a guide for understanding the God’s words in the Quran.
  • Shariat: A divine law of Islam. The life of a Muslim (birth and death) is governed by the Shariat (from cradle to grave). It is a book of rules for the Muslims.
  • Tariquat: A spiritual path which represents the inner dimensions of Islam. The best examples are the Sufi saints who felt that everyone is equal and truly represented Islam.

Power And Authority:

  • Patriarchal: Father is the head of the family and takes all decisions. Final authority is with father.
  • Matriarchal: Mother is the head of the family and takes all decisions. Mother is the final authority.
  • Marriage: A relationship and bond between spouses, usually a male and female getting married.Family consists of a man and a woman who are married through legal means.

Rules of marriage:

  • Endogamous-Marrying within your caste/social group.
  • Gotra-Family name.
  • Exogamous-Marrying within your caste but outside your Gotra.

Marriage Between Cousins
Cross cousin

  • Brother’s and sister’s children get married .
    Daughter ↔ son
  • Brother married ↔ sister, daughter
    [when the boy gets married to his sister’s daughter]

Mother -in-law is the grandson, e.g Andhra Pradesh

Parallel cousin:
Children of two brothers can get married.
Children of two sisters can get married.
— Usually present in Muslim families.

Forms Of Marriage:

  • In monogamy, a person has only one spouse at a time. There is only one sexual partner during the entire lifetime. Only after the partner dies/divorced they can marry. It is the only legally accepted form of marriage.
  • Polygamy—More than one partners at the same time e.g. Shikhs etc.

Sociology Class 11 Notes Chapter 3 Understanding Social Institutions 1

It is a unified system of beliefs and practices relative to sacred thing, uniting into a simple moral community and all those who adhere to those beliefs and practices. Faith in a divine or supreme power and specific rituals are main features of any religion. India being a pluralistic society every one has right to have faith in any religion. Main religions of India are Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Islam, Christianity, Sikhism etc.

2-sects of Jainism:
(i) Swetambars: White clothed people. They believed that the Tirthankars should be covered with white clothes.

(ii) Digambars: Non clothed people. They believed that Tirthankars should not be covered and left naked.

  • They believed in the following:
    • Right faith
    • Right knowledge
    • Right conduct and behavior in society etc.
    • To have faith in the right person.
  • They believed in the concept of soul, hell and heaven.
  • They believed in fasting to purify body-austerity (being pure) and Ahimsa.
  • Fasting and austerity are required for self-purification, mental discipline to obtain self-control and concentration.
  • They followed a five fold discipline:
    • Truth
    • Non-violence
    • Honesty
    • Sexual purity
    • Indifference to material gains-keep away from greed-lead a normal life.


  • They believe in Jesus Christ.
  • Holy book-The Bible
  • Place of worship-church.
  • The Bible is in two parts-Old and New Testament.
    → The Old Testament (Torah) followed by Jews.
    → New Testament followed by Catholics.
  • Does not believe in untouchability or segregation. Therefore, people converted a lot.


  • Faith in Jesus Christ as Messenger of God.
  •  Active service (Missionaries’ social service).
  • Catholics and Protestants—the two categories of followers/believers
  • Pope is the supreme religious leader residing in Vatican City-richest religious organisation. Hierarchy followed-Pope-cardinals → Archbishop → Bishop → Priest /Father

These are the ceremonies that are performed by them:

  • Baptism: When the child is born, it is a ritual to become a Christian. Catholics and Protestants do it.
  • Conformation: It is done when the child is 7 years old. This practice is done in Catholics. Child is taught the main tenets of Christianity and obligations by the priest. After this is done, the child is confirmed by the Bishop. Protestants-Conformation is done when the Protestants are 15 years of age.
  • Marriage — Solemnized by the priest
  • Death ceremony — Observed by wearing black for a month. Family wears black for a year.

Originated in India from the Sanskrit word “Shishya”—meaning student.

  • Guru Nanak — He founded Sikhism, believed in peace, sang hymns (rhyming songs for nature and God) of love and purity. Believed in universal brotherhood.
  • 5th Guru — Gum Arjun Singh compiled the “Gum Granth Sahib” that contains hymns, sayings of the first 5 Gums. He built the Golden Temple at Amritsar. From his time, Sikhism became a militant organisation for protection from outside invasions.
  • 10th Guru — Gum Gobind Singh-He converted Sikhs into military community (everyone had to know war skills).

He gave the 5 ‘K’s. Kada, Kesh, Kangha, Kacha and Kirpan (dagger). Their life is carried around Gurudwaras. They pray to the Guru Granth Sahib.

Khalsa and Santanis are the two sects:

  • Khalsa: Consider themselves pure. Followers of Guru Gobind Singh. They don’t associate their religion with Hinduism.
  • Santanis: Followers of Guru Nanak. They were associated with Hinduism.

Dhamm has four meanings:

  • Absolute Truth-have to tell the truth.
  • Right Conduct-behave in the right manner.
  • Listen to the right doctrine (sayings of doctrine).
  • Experience-live and learn from life.

Buddhists believe in four Truths:

  • Suffering
  • A cause for suffering (desire, expectations).
  • Cause of suffering can be removed if you know where you are going wrong.
  • A plan or a blueprint can be made to remove the suffering from our lives.

Holy books of Buddhism:

  • Vinay Pitak-book of discipline.
  • Sulla Pitak-book of sermons.
  • Abhidhamm Pitak-book of doctrine.

Buddhism has a eight fold path and if you follow it, it will lead to ‘Moksha’ or Nirvana. The four noble truths and eight fold path is the most important.

Buddh Pumima-Gautam Buddha’s birthday. They also celebrate Holi, Diwali etc.

Economic Institutions:

  • To do with money, finances, currency.
  • Its the production, distribution and consumption of goods and services. Also includes market forces.

(A) Sectors

  • Primary-agriculture-raw materials.
  • Secondary-industries, production.
  • Tertiary-services.

There are:

  • 1. Public sector sick companies-owned by the government
  • 2. Private sector individuals—main aim is profit.

Disinvestment — Selling part of shares of a PSU to the public and private sectors.

  • Joint venture-Some companies owned by both govt, and people-separately also.
    MTNL, BSNL (govt.) Airtel, Reliance] (private).

Work — They are not only for livelihood but also for satisfaction. Work involves carrying out tasks which require physical and mental abilities. The concept of work has changed over the years. The courses and streams have also changed. Attention has moved away from primary to secondary and  tertiary sector.

People are more self-motivated and self-oriented. Likewise, in rural societies too, the concept of work has changed. Now instead of manual labour, they use machines, HYV seeds etc.

Types of Economy:

  • Capitalist—Private ownership of property mainly for profit, according to demand and supply.
  • Socialist—Govt, is incharge, controls everything-only PSU’S govt, controls prices, production and distribution of resources.
  • Democratic—Mixed economy. Prices are determined by the market.
    Globalization—Integration of local economy with global economy.
    Liberalization—Economic aspect of globalization .

    • Privatization of companies
    • Removal of barriers with regard to people, technology, commodities, capital.
    • Removal of tarrifs etc.

Political Institutions

  • Power is the ability to influence or control the behavior of people.
  • The term ‘authority’ is often used for power perceived as legitimate by the social structure.
  • Power can be seen as evil or unjust but the exercise of power is accepted as endemic to human and social beings.

While power can be seen as constraining human action, it also makes action possible. It is a complex strategic situation in a given social setting.

Panchayati Raj Institution

  • Ambedkar was against it. At first he thought that it would lead to official suppression of the lower castes by the Brahmins.
  • Gandhi ji believed in Gram Swaraj. He wanted the whole village to be self-sufficient by giving them vocational training, then they will be independent.
  • Democratic Decentralization—Divided power among different governments. Power is not concentrated in the central government. It is distributed at different levels so that the burden of the central government is reduced.
  • Three tier system
    • Village level-Gram Panchayat. Lots of villages together form a block .
    • Block level-Block Samiti. Lots of blocks form a district.
    • District level-Zila Parishad.
  • All people above 18 years in every village vote for the village panchayat and the head is sarpanch.
  • All the members of the village panchayat vote for the Block Samiti (all villages in a block).
  • All members of all the Block Samitis vote for the Zila Parishad.

Important terms:

  • Authority: It refers to a person who has inherent power to give reward and punishment to subordinates. It is an exercise of influence which is voluntarily accepted by the persons on whom it is exercised.
  • Citizen: A member of a political community. Membership includes certain rights and duties to members. ‘
  • Civil rights: Freedom to Speech and Religion, Right of Equality, Right to Live, according to one’s choice.
  • Endogamy: A marriage practice which occurs within a particular caste, class or tribal group.
  • Ideology: Shared ideas or beliefs, which serve to justify the interests of dominant groups. The concept of ideology
  • connects closely with that of power.
  • Service sector: With the rise of industrialisation, urbanisation, liberalisation and globalisation various forms of work are being provided to people in communication, education, health, transportation, aviation, I.T etc.
  • Family: It refers to a group defined by sex, relationship, sufficiently precise and enduring to provide for the procreation and upbringing of children.
  • Formal education: Education which is important in a well defined institutional setting like-schools, colleges, universities etc.
  • Gender: Culturally determined behaviour regarded as suitable for the members of each sex.
  • Ideology: Shared ideas or beliefs which serve to justify the interest of dominant groups.
  • Polygamy: A marriage practice in which more than one man is married to a woman.
  • Polyandry: A marriage practice in which more than one woman is married to a man.
  • Social Institution: Structure of society that is organised to meet the needs of the people mainly through well established patterns. There are certain rules, regulations and norms in every institution.
  • Capitalism: The economic system bom out of industrialisation that divided the society into two classes—the capitalist and the working class.
  • Socialism: An economic system in which production and distribution in a society are collectively owned rather than privately. The main object is to fulfil people’s needs rather than obtain high profits.
  • Kinship: Children are exposed to kins and they are expected to be emotionally attached to them. The system of making such close relationship is known as kinship. These relations chronologically depend on heredity. Adopted children become legitimate members of kinship.
  • Marriage: Refers to society’s sanction for the establishment of family through procreation.
  • Religion: A unified system of beliefs and rituals relative to sacred things, writing into a single moral community.
  • Division of Labour: A system of distribution of work among the people based on their skill and competence.
  • Monogamy: A man marries only one woman.
  • Education: A system of imparting experiences which direct people towards a successful, controlled and systematic life. It is a process to pass one’s knowledge from generation which is essential to the development of culture.
  • Formal Education: System of education imparted in a well defined setting like school, college, university. It follows a prescribed syllabus with an objective of all round development in a time bound period.
  • Distance Learning: A system of formal education in which students get education at their doorsteps by getting study material through post or e-mail. In India, IGNOU (Indira Gandhi National Open University) imparts distance education across the country.
  • Elementry Education: Elementry education has four sub-levels:
    • Primary (for 5 years)
    • The middle classes (for 3 years)
    • Secondary or high school (for 2 yrs)
    • Senior secondary level (for another 2 yrs).

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