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Which among the following were the features of the social and religious reform movements of the nineteenth century?

1. Untouchability as an issue of social reform was raised by almost all leaders of that era.

2. There was little attempt to create a reformist social consciousness at the grass-roots level of the society.

3. There was dissemination of religious knowledge through translation of religious texts into vernacular languages.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.


1. 1 and 2 only
2. 2 and 3 only
3. 1 and 3 only
4. 1, 2 and 3

1 Answer

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Correct Answer - Option 2 : 2 and 3 only

The correct statement is 2 and 3 only

  • The general high caste character of the reform movements of the early nineteenth century explains to a large extent the relative silence on the caste question.
  • Untouchability as an issue of social reform had to wait until the beginning of the twentieth century and the arrival of Mahatma Gandhi in Indian public life after the first World War. Hence, statement 1 is not correct.
  • Lacking in a broad social base, the reformers of the early nineteenth century thus exhibited an intrinsic faith in the benevolent nature of colonial rule and relied more on legislation for imposing reform from above.
  • There was very little or no attempt to create a reformist social consciousness at the grass-roots level, where religious revivalism later found a fertile ground. Hence, statement 2 is correct.
  • The dissemination of religious knowledge through translation of religious texts into vernacular languages and the right granted to the laity to interpret scriptures represented an important initial breach in the strangle hold of misinterpreted religious dogmas.
  • The simplification of rituals made worship a more intensely personal experience without the mediation of intermediaries. Hence, statement 3 is correct.

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