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Social Structure of Indian society in Sociology | Bednotesatoz


Social Structure of Indian Society before Independence of India

Indian Society before Independence :
Pre independence period is marked with age old structures of society.

These structures are well defined into four classes of society :

1. Brahmins ( teachers/ knowledgeable persons or realised souls ).

2. Kshatriyas ( warriors, fighters or protectors of society ).

3. Vaishyas ( business people providing commodities to the society ).

4. Shudras ( serving people , enhancing service to the society ).


  • Manu a social philosopher and economist of his time could visualise the nature and structure of society suitable and relevant to that time.

  • Broadly speaking ,four professional activities were taken as essential ,for dynamic economy and survival of the society.

  • Aristotle a great Greek philosopher, also divided the society into four sections /classes in order to maintain a cohesive society and dynamic economy.

  • Indian societies had its roots in rural economy.

  • The social life based on agriculture and environment friendly was quite simple.

  • People in a village were inter-connected and inter-dependent.

  • Village economy had the capacity to meet the requirement of each sections of the society. It was a compact form of social life.

Functions of caste system

Caste system traditionally holds the following functions:

(i) It determines the occupation of different groups among the caste.

(ii) It strictly follows endogamy.

(iii) Jajmani system is the economic basis of the caste system. In this system, exchange of goods and services takes place through well defined division of labour

(iv) Caste sometimes is also seen as à social and psychological resource for its members. A sense of solidarity and common consciousness becomes rescuing bait to fellow caste man.

In social anthropological parlance the four hierarchies of Varna, Guna, Purusharthas and Ashrams are described in terms of ,,role institutionalization", ,charismatic endowment,"goal orientation", and ,life stages" and its value obligations respectively

Purusharthas are value themes, goals of life arranged in a hierarchical order to be persuaded by all individuals and social categories

The four chief aims of Purusharthas are:

1. Dharma (righteousness): It is a law of all moral actions, the manner of one's duties, determined by caste, sex, and stage of life. Dharma applies in being a student, a householder, and, in reduced form, a forest resident.

2. Artha (wealth): is material success in life. It refers to all the means of acquiring worldly prosperity like power or wealth.

The word artha can mean business, work, profit, utility, wealth, money, and also political experience and knowledge.

3. Kama (desire): Kama refers to all desires in man seeking pleasure through satisfaction of senses, including sexual satisfaction.

4. Moksha (salvation or liberation): salvation from the cycle of birth and death is moksha. It signifies realization of the self



According to the ancient Hindu Laws of Manu, there are four stages or "ashrams" of life, each lasting 21 (or 25) years.

The first stage (0-25) years - Brahmacharyam/Student.

The second stage (25-50) years - Grihastha/Householder

The third stage (50-75) years - Vanaprastha /Hideaway 

The fourth stage (75-100+) years - Sanyasa/ Renunciate 


स्वतंत्रता से पहले भारतीय समाज के ढांचे


भारतीय समाज स्वतंत्रता से पहले:
आज़ादी से पहले का समय समाज के सदियों पुराने ढांचे से निर्धारित होता है।ये संरचनाएँ समाज के चार वर्गों में परिभाषित हैंः

1. ब्राह्मण (शिक्षक/ज्ञानी व्यक्ति )

2. क्षत्रिय (योद्धा, या समाज के संरक्षक)

3. वैश्य (व्यवसायिक लोग समाज को वस्तुएं प्रदान करते हैं)

4. शूद्र (समाज की सेवा प्रदान करने वाले लोगों की सेवा)।

  • मनु अपने समय के एक सामाजिक दार्शनिक और अर्थशास्त्री थे और उस समय के लिए उपयुक्त और प्रासंगिक समाज की प्रकृति और संरचना की कल्पना कर सकते थे।
  • मोटे तौर पर, सक्रिय अर्थव्यवस्था तथा समाज के अस्तित्व के लिए चार व्यावसायिक क्रियाकलापों को अनिवार्य माना गया।
  • एरिस्टोटल एक महान यूनानी दार्शनिक ने भी एकजुट समाज और गतिशील अर्थव्यवस्था को बनाए रखने के लिए समाज को चार वर्गों/वर्गों में विभाजित किया था।
  • भारतीय समाज की जड़ें ग्रामीण अर्थव्यवस्था में थीं।
  • सामाजिक जीवन कृषि और पर्यावरण-अनुकूल जीवन पर आधारित सीधा-सादा होता था।
  • गांव के लोग एक दूसरे से जुड़े हुए थे और एक दूसरे पर निर्भर थे। गांव की अर्थव्यवस्था में समाज के प्रत्येक वर्ग की आवश्यकता को पूरा करने की क्षमता थी।यह सामाजिक जीवन का एक सुगठित रूप था।