Saturday, May 23, 2020

Civilising the “Native”, Educating the Nation | Chapter 7 | History 8th |

Book Cover Social Science History 8th
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Civilising the “Native”, Educating the Nation | Chapter 7 | History 8th |

Chapter 8. Civilising the “Native”, Educating the Nation

Let’s Recall

Q1. Match the following

William Jones:             promotion of English education

Rabindranath Tagore:               respect for ancient cultures

Thomas Macaulay:                   gurus

Mahatma Gandhi:                     learning in a natural environment

Pathshalas:                               critical of English education


William Jones:                         Respect for ancient cultures

Rabindranath Tagore:               Learning in the natural environment

Thomas Macaulay:                   Promotion of English education

Mahatma Gandhi:                     Critical English education

Pathshalas:                               Gurus

 Q2. State whether true or false.

(a) James Mill was a severe critic of the Orientalists.      True
(b) The 1854 Despatch on education was in favour of English being introduced as a medium of higher education in India.   True
(c) Mahatma Gandhi thought that promotion of literacy was the most important aim of education. False
(d) Rabindranath Tagore felt that children ought to be subjected to strict discipline.          False

Let’s Discuss

Q3. What happened to the Pathshalas as the British introduced a new system of education?

Ans. Those schools that adopted the rule were supported by the government with funds and those who did not accept the rule faced a lot of problems and were slowly closed.

Q4. Why did William Jones feel the need to study Indian history, philosophy, and law?

Ans. Orientalists like William Jones studied ancient Indian texts on law, philosophy, religion, politics, morality, arithmetic, medicine, and the other sciences. This was for a reason. They felt that Indian civilisation had attained its glory in the ancient past, but had subsequently declined. In order to understand India, it was necessary to discover the sacred and legal texts that were produced in the ancient period. Only those texts could reveal the real ideas and laws of the Hindus and Muslims, and only a new study of these texts could form the basis of the future development of India.

Q5. Why did James Mill and Thomas Macaulay thinks that European education was essential in India?

Ans. James Mill and Thomas Macaulay were critical of the Orientalist vision of learning. They believed that the knowledge of the East was full of errors and unscientific thought; that Eastern literature was non-serious and light-hearted; that no branch of Eastern knowledge could be compared to what had been produced in Europe, and especially in England; that the British government was wasting both effort and public money in promoting Oriental learning as it was of no practical use. They saw India as an uncivilized country that needed to be civilised. For them, the aim of education was to teach what was useful and practical. European education was thus essential in India; English language education was essential in India. Indians needed to be made familiar with the scientific, technical, and philosophical advances that the West had made; they needed to be exposed to the great poets and writers of the West; their tastes, values, and culture needed to be changed. This, according to them, was the right way forward.

Q6. Why did Mahatma Gandhi think that English education had enslaved Indians?

Ans. English or colonial education, according to Mahatma Gandhi, created a sense of inferiority in the minds of Indians. It made them see Western civilization as superior and destroyed their pride in their own culture. Thus, charmed by the West and by everything coming from the West, the Indians educated under the colonial system would end up being the admirers of British rule in India; thus, willingly forgetting their enslavement, and enslaving themselves further.

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