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Syllabus of Sociology Paper - I


FUNDAMENTALS OF SOCIOLOGY

  1. Sociology - The Discipline:
    (a) Modernity and social changes in Europe and emergence of Sociology.
    (b) Scope of the subject and comparison with other social sciences.
    (c) Sociology and common sense.
  2. Sociology as Science:
    (a) Science, scientific method, and critique.
    (b) Major theoretical strands of research methodology.
    (c) Positivism and its critique.
    (d) Fact value and objectivity.
    (e) Non-positivist methodologies.
  3. Research Methods and Analysis:
    (a) Qualitative and quantitative methods.
    (b) Techniques of data collection.
    (c) Variables, sampling, hypothesis, reliability, and validity.
  4. Sociological Thinkers:
    (a) Karl Marx - Historical materialism, mode of production, alienation, class struggle. 
    (b) Emile Durkhteim - Division of labour, social fact, suicide, religion and society.
    (c) Max Weber - Social action, ideal types, authority, bureaucracy, protestant ethic and the spirit of capitalism.
    (d) Talcolt Parsons - Social system, pattern variables.
    (e) Robert K. Merton - Latent and manifest functions, conformity and deviance, reference groups.
    (f) Mead - Self and identity.
  5. Stratification and Mobility:
    (a) Concepts - equality, inequality, hierarchy, exclusion, poverty, and deprivation.
    (b) Theories of social stratification - Structural functionalist theory, Marxist theory, Weberian theory.
    (c) Dimensions - Social stratification of class, status groups, gender, ethnicity and race.
    (d) Social mobility - open and closed systems, types of mobility, sources and causes of mobility.
  6. Works and Economic Life:
    (a) Social organization of work in different types of society - slave society, feudal society, industrial capitalist society.
    (b) Formal and informal organization of work.
    (c) Labour and society.
  7. Politics and Society:
    (a) Sociological theories of power.
    (b) Power elite, bureaucracy, pressure groups and political parties.
    (c) Nation, state, citizenship, democracy, civil society, ideology.
    (d) Protest, agitation, social movements, collective action, revolution.
  8. Religion and Society:
    (a) Sociological theories of religion.
    (b) Types of religious practices: animism, monism, pluralism, sects, cults.
    (c) Religion in modern society: religion and science, secularization, religious revivalism, fundamentalism.
  9. Systems of Kinship:
    (a) Family, household, marriage.
    (b) Types and forms of family.
    (c) Lineage and descent.
    (d) Patriarchy and sexual division of labour.
    (e) Contem porary trends.
  10. Social Change in Modern Society:
    (a) Sociological theories of social change.
    (b) Development and dependency.
    (c) Agents of social change.
    (d) Education and social change.
    (e) Science, technology, and social change.

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Syllabus of Sociology Paper - II


INDIAN SOCIETY: STRUCTURE AND CHANGE

A. Introducing Indian Society:

  1. Perspectives on the Study of Indian Society:
    (a) Indology (G.S. Ghure). 
    (b) Structural functionalism (M. N. Srinivas). 
    (c) Marxist sociology (A. R. Desai).
  2. Impact of colonial rule on Indian society:
    (a) Social background of Indian nationalism. 
    (b) Modernization of Indian tradition.
    (c) Protests and movements during the colonial period.
    (d) Social reforms.

B. Social Structure:

  1. Rural and Agrarian Social Structure:
    (a) The idea of Indian village and village studies
    (b) Agrarian social structure— evolution of land tenure system, land reforms.
  2. Caste System: 
    (a) Perspectives on the study of caste systems: G. S. Ghurye, M. N. Srinivas, Louis Dumont, Andre Beteille.
    (b) Features of caste system.
    (c) Untouchability-forms and perspectives
  3. Tribal Communities in India: 
    (a) Definitional problems.
    (b) Geographical spread.
    (c) Colonial policies and tribes.
    (d) Issues of integration and autonomy. 
  4. Social Classes in India:
    (a) Agrarian class structure.
    (b) Industrial class structure.
    (c) Middle classes in India.
  5. Systems of Kinship in India:
    (a) Lineage and descent in India.
    (b) Types of kinship systems.
    (c) Family and marriage in India.
    (d) Household dimensions of the family.
    (e) Patriarchy, entitlements, and sexual division of labour.
  6. Religion and Society:
    (a) Religious communities in India.
    (b) Problems of religious minorities.

C. Social Changes in India:

  1. Visions of Social Change in India:
    (a) Idea of development planning and mixed economy.
    (b) Constitution, law, and social change.
    (c) Education and social change.
  2. Rural and Agrarian Transformation in India:
    (a) Programmes of rural development, Community Development Programme, cooperatives, poverty alleviation schemes.
    (b) Green revolution and social change.
    (c) Changing modes of production in Indian agriculture.
    (d) Problems of rural labour, bondage, migration.
  3. Industrialization and Urbanisation in India:
    (a) Evolution of modern industry in India.
    (b) Growth of urban settlements in India.
    (c) Working class: structure, growth, class mobilization.
    (d) Informal sector, child labour.
    (e) Slums and deprivation in urban areas.
  4. Politics and Society:
    (a) Nation, democracy and citizenship.
    (b) Political parties, pressure groups, social and political elite.
    (c) Regionalism and decentralization of power.
    (d) Secularization. 
  5. Social Movements in Modern India:
    (a) Peasants and farmers' movements.
    (b) Women’s movement.
    (c) Backward classes & Dalit movements.
    (d) Environmental movements.
    (e) Ethnicity and Identity movements.
  6. Population Dynamics:
    Population size, growth, composition and distribution.
    Components of population growth: birth, death, migration.
    Population Policy and family planning.
    Emerging issues: ageing, sex ratios, child and infant mortality, reproductive health.
  7. Challenges of Social Transformation:
    (a) Crisis of development: displacement, environmental problems and sustainability.
    (b) Poverty, deprivation and inequalities. 
    (c) Violence against women.
    (d) Caste conflicts. 
    (e) Ethnic conflicts, communalism, religious revivalism. 
    (f) Illiteracy and disparities in education. 

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Previous Year UPSC Questions

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2018 2017
2023 2022 2021 2020
2019 2018 2017

Paper-1


SECTION ‘A’

  1. Write short answers, with a sociological perspective, on the following questions in about 150 words each:
    a). Highlight the significant features of A.R. Desai's 'Dialectical Perspective' to study Indian Society.
    b). "The decade of the 1950s was the golden period of village studies in Indian Sociology." Explain the statement.
    c). Analyse the differences between the attributional and interactional approach in studying the caste system.
    d). Are Tradition and Modernity antithetical to each other. Comment.
    e). Discuss the main features of Land Reforms in post-independence India.
  2. Answer the following:
    a). Do you agree with the view of Andre Beteille that India's villages are representative of Indian society's basic civilizational values? Present a sociological overview.
    b). Elaborate the salient features and the role of middle class in India's democracy and development.
    c). Analyse the role of market and modern forces in understanding the changing trends in marriage systems in India.
  3. Answer the following:
    a). Contextualize Louis Dumont's concept of 'binary opposition' with reference to caste system in India.
    b). Define the concepts of 'Descent' and 'Alliance'. Differentiate between North Indian and South Indian Kinship systems with examples.
    c). Critically examine the concept of Sanskritization with suitable illustrations.
  4. Answer the following:
    a). Analyse the perspectives of Isolation, Assimilation and Integration in understanding the trajectories of Indian Tribal Development.
    b). Explain the implications and the impact of globalisation in situating the changing agrarian class structure in India.
    c). Critique the victory narratives of the Green Revolution in the context of Indian society.

SECTION ‘B’

  1. Write short answers, with a sociological perspective, on the following questions in about 150 words each:
    a). A Citing some case studies, expand the concept of 'Development-induced Displacement'.
    b). Examine the concept of Cultural Pluralism' in the context of India's Unity in Diversity.
    c). Highlight the salient features of the New Education Policy (NEP) 2020.
    d). Analyse the sociological interconnections between Social Media and Mass Mobilization in India.
    e). Discuss the nature of regional variations in sex ratio in India? stating reasons thereof.
  2. Answer the following:
    a). How do you account for the increasing significance of religion in public and personal spheres in the context of secularisation thesis in India. Explain.
    b). In the face of rising global climatic concerns, how do you contextualise the relevance of the Chipko Movement and its Gandhian tone? Answer analytically.
    c). What actionable measures would you suggest to curb the recurrent child labour menace in India.
  3. Answer the following:
    a). Do you think that the decades of Dalit political mobilizations and movements have helped in strengthening India's democracy? Substantiate your arguments with facts.20
    b). What is 'reverse migration'? Discuss its features, causes and consequences in India.20
    c). Discuss the phenomenon of rural-urban continuum with suitable examples. 10
  4. Answer the following:
    a). Explain the thematic linkages between Patriarchy' and 'Honour killing' in India, citing some recent cases.
    b). Discuss the challenges faced by the cooperative movements in India. Suggest measures to strengthen the movement at the grass-roots level.
    c). What is 'Ageing'? Discuss the major problems of aged people in India.

Paper-2


SECTION ‘A’

  1. Write short answers, with a sociological perspective, on the following questions in about 150 words each:
    a). A Highlight the significant features of A.R. Desai's 'Dialectical Perspective' to study Indian Society.
    b). "The decade of the 1950s was the golden period of village studies in Indian Sociology." Explain the statement.
    c). Analyse the differences between the attributional and interactional approach in studying the caste system.
    d). Are Tradition and Modernity antithetical to each other. Comment.
    e). Discuss the main features of Land Reforms in post-independence India.
  2. Answer the following:
    a). Do you agree with the view of Andre Beteille that India's villages are representative of Indian society's basic civilizational values? Present a sociological overview.
    b). Elaborate the salient features and the role of middle class in India's democracy and development.
    c). Analyse the role of market and modern forces in understanding the changing trends in marriage systems in India.
  3. Answer the following:
    a). Contextualize Louis Dumont's concept of 'binary opposition' with reference to caste system in India.
    b). Define the concepts of 'Descent' and 'Alliance'. Differentiate between North Indian and South Indian Kinship systems with examples.
    c). Critically examine the concept of Sanskritization with suitable illustrations.
  4. Answer the following:
    a). Analyse the perspectives of Isolation, Assimilation and Integration in understanding the trajectories of Indian Tribal Development.
    b). Explain the implications and the impact of globalisation in situating the changing agrarian class structure in India.
    c). Critique the victory narratives of the Green Revolution in the context of Indian society.

SECTION ‘B’

  1. Write Short answers, with a sociological perspective, on the following questions in about 150 words each:
    a). Citing some case studies, expand the concept of 'Development-induced Displacement'.
    b). Examine the concept of Cultural Pluralism' in the context of India's Unity in Diversity.
    c). Highlight the salient features of the New Education Policy (NEP) 2020.
    d). Analyse the sociological interconnections between Social Media and Mass Mobilization in India.
    e). Discuss the nature of regional variations in sex ratio in India? stating reasons thereof.
  2. Answer the following:
    a). How do you account for the increasing significance of religion in public and personal spheres in the context of secularisation thesis in India. Explain.
    b). In the face of rising global climatic concerns, how do you contextualise the relevance of the Chipko Movement and its Gandhian tone? Answer analytically.
    c). What actionable measures would you suggest to curb the recurrent child labour menace in India.
  3. Answer the following:
    a). Do you think that the decades of Dalit political mobilizations and movements have helped in strengthening India's democracy? Substantiate your arguments with facts.
    b). What is 'reverse migration'? Discuss its features, causes and consequences in India.
    c). Discuss the phenomenon of rural-urban continuum with suitable examples.
  4. Answer the following:
    a). Explain the thematic linkages between Patriarchy' and 'Honour killing' in India, citing some recent cases.
    b). Discuss the challenges faced by the cooperative movements in India. Suggest measures to strengthen the movement at the grass-roots level.
    c). What is 'Ageing'? Discuss the major problems of aged people in India.

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