Social Group Movements In India – A Historical View
Academic Leadership - Online Journal,
Vol. 21 No. 7 (2020): Vol-21-Issue-7-July-2020
The caste system of Hindus, which divided the Hindu community into a multitude of sealed groups, hierarchically graded and based on birth, was one of the principal targets of the social reform movements. They branded the caste system as a powerful obstacle in the growth of National unity and solidarity. The social reformers attacked this inequality and separatism and stood for equalty and co-operation. Social movements often arise with the aim of bringing about changes on a public issue such as ensuring the right of the tribal population to use the forests or the right of displaced people to settlement and compensation. Think of other issues that social movements have taken up in the past and present. While social movements seek to bring in social change, counter movements sometimes arise in defence of status quo. There are many instances of such counter movements. When Raja Rammohan Roy campaigned against sati and formed the Brahmo samaj, defenders of sati formed Dharma Sabha and petitioned the British not to legislate against sati. When reformers demanded education for girls, many protested that this would be disastrous for society. It is important to distinguish between social change in general and social movements. Social change is continuous and ongoing. The broad historical processes of social change are the sum total of countries individual and collective actions gathered across time and space. Social movements are directed towards some specific goals. It involves long and continuous social effort and action by people.