Cultural Change

Cultural Change


Discuss the mix of ideas of the social reformers related with cultural change in 19th century.


It is told by sociologists that several social reformers of 19th and early 20th century conveyed their ideas in a mix forms for the betterment of cultural change of the Indian societies. Some of the ideas of some prominent reformers are given in the following lines:

(i) Ram Mohan Roy attacked the practice of sati on the basis of both appeals to humanitarian and natural rights doctrines as well as Hindu shastras.

(ii) Ranade’s writings entitled the texts of the Hindu law on the Lawfulness of the remarriage of Widows and Vedic Authorities for Widow Marriage elaborated the shastric sanction for remarriage of widows.

(iii) The content of new education was modernising and liberal. The literary content of the courses in the humanities and social sciences was drawn from the literature of the European Renaissance, Reformation and Enlightment. Its themes were humanistic, secular and liberal.

(iv) Sir Sayed Ahmed Khan’s interpretation of Islam emphasised the validity of free enquiry (ijtihad) and the alleged similarities between koranic revelations and the laws of the nature discovered by modern science.

(v) Kandukiri Viresalingam’s The sources of Knowledge reflected his familiarity with navya-nyaya logic. At the same time he translated Julius Huxley.

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