Social Theory Quiz
How is Georgio Agamben's concept of 'bare life' as a body devoid of any political rights justified in the Indian context?
The interstate migrant workers are stigmatised and viewed as outsiders both in their host and home states as they are considered as bodily carriers of the disease. They are deprived of their political rights to life, food, shelter and so on
How is Dr B.R. Ambedkar's idea of the caste system different from that of Mahatma Gandhi's?
Gandhi emphasised on and justified the caste-based division of labour whereas Ambedkar did seek to abolish the generations of slavery that the people from historically marginalised caste are subjected to (annihilate the caste system).
How is Sociologist Jean Baudrillard's concept of 'hyperreality' relevant in terms of Indian context?
Hyperreality is the inability to distinguish between what is real and what is communicated to us as real by artificial intelligence, technology-impacted media agencies and so on. Fake news propagated by the Indian media houses and the audience consuming it is a premium example
How is Karl Marx's idea of class struggle relevant to the present socio-political scenario in India?
India slips to 176th rank in the global social mobility index, however, Ambani, the biggest business tycoon of India has reportedly made 90 crores every hour, during the pandemic-induced country-wide lockdown. Moreover, States like Gujarat and Rajasthan violated the Factory Workers Act and made the labourers work for more than eight hours a day, without any extra remuneration or paid leave.
How can Anindita Ghosh’s concept of “double exploitation” of women be looked at from the perspective of the feminist movement in India.
Dalit women are much more vulnerable to exploitation than Savarna women. Dalit women have to bear the burden of both their caste identity and their gender identity. As a result, they are exploited by Savarna men as well as men who belong to their communities. Jogin tradition in South India is an example, whereby, women and girls from historically marginalised communities are made to serve as Devadasis in temples where they are explored by men of
How relevant is Herbert Spencer’s theory of ‘Social Evolution’ in real-life?
Social Organism, that is, society as a biological organism. Society is viewed and treated like a biological (living) organism. Just like we have evolved from phytoplankton, which is a simple organism to mammals and humans, highest or complex organisms, society, too, proceeds from a simple structure to a complex one. For example, the urbanisation of the villages or countryside gradually increases the number of settlements in and population of that particular village or periphery. Similarly, like a living organism which comprises of interrelated organs, society comprises of different structures. When one of these structures fail to operate properly, social dysfunctions take place.
How can Emile Durkheim's concept of "Social Solidarity" be studied from the lens of social activism?
Social solidarity refers to the collective cohesion which characterises a group. Each member of the group share mutual goals and objectives and act in a more or less similar way to achieve these objectives. Similarly, during a strike or protest march, everyone has a similar goal, shares similar space, and perform the same acts (sloganeering, holding banners).
Does Emile Durkheim's concept of "altruistic suicide" practically make sense?
Altruistic suicide is a direct consequence of the individual's over-integration into his social group. It is a form of sacrifice on the part of the individual which they do to promote a greater social cause or greater good for his community. In Japan, Harakiri is a practice whereby an individual takes their lives so that their nation or community can benefit from it. In India, young children of poor farmers have killed themselves so that their parents would not have to think of taking care of them and bringing them up at an absolute money crunch and no prospects of income.
How is Karl Marx's "Historical Materialism" an economic interpretation of history?
According to Marx's “Historical Materialism”, an individual's material possessions and economic position define their class and access to political, educational, religious and moral rights and thereby influences the forces of production. For instance, one born into a family of elites will generally have access to more social as well as economic capital which will further help them in achieving their goals in life. A real-life example of this would be the middle-class parents in America who enrol their children in various enrichment activities, thereby providing them with a range of choices and assistance but the working-class parents fail to do so.
Is Karl Marx's idea of society sheltering just two classes: the 'haves' and 'have-nots' justifiable?
The ruling class refers to the minute percentage of rich people who account for more than 90% of the wealth and have access to scarce resources whereas the subject class refers to people languishing in poverty, lacking access to necessities like land, food and shelter.
What does Emile Durkheim mean by 'Social Capital'?
Social Capital refers to one's social relations which are embedded in mutual trust and which help them achieve their goals. For instance, if an individual applies for a job in the farms of their parents' friends or relatives, it is most likely for them to get the job. Hence, the parents' connection with their friends or relatives can be counted as social capital possessed by the child.
What best describes Erving Goffman's theory of "Dramaturgical Analysis"?
It refers to the creation of one's self-image, from a theatrical perspective whereby the concepts of front stage and backstage come into play. Backstage is where an individual can be what they really are or prepare for the role that they need to play in the front stage. Front stage refers to modifying one's action according to one's audience, as scripted, in other words concerning how others act and interact. For an individual, their backstage can be their home and front stage can be where they work.
Is love a social construct?
: Our idea of love is shaped by a range of social factors. Society tells us and we internalise it through the process of socialisation that who we should love and who we shouldn't. For instance, we have a set of parameters and qualifications based on which we choose our partners or friends, which, in a broader sense, is viewed as an act of 'love'
What is sociologist T.H. Marshall's concept of "thin citizenship"?
It refers to the concept of legal citizenship or documentary citizenship, whereby a person is considered a citizen of a nation provided that he has an identity proof and a voter ID. However, he is deprived of all other political and social rights like rights to live peacefully, food shelter and so on.
How does Talcott Parsons defines "Reference Groups"?
Reference groups are social groups which are accepted as a yardstick to measure or compare another group. An upper-class family's reference group can be a middle-class family and hence, the former might consider themselves as affluent compared to the latter. Similarly, a working-class family might consider a middle-class family as their reference group and strive hard to lead a life and earn like the members of their reference group.
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