Answer :

The caste system can be defined as the combination of two sets of principle

• One is based upon difference and separation


• Other is based upon wholismand hierarchy


The hierarchical ordering of castes is based on the difference between purity and pollution. The castes that are considered ritually pure have higher status than those which are less pure or impure.


The role of ideas of separation and hierarchy in caste system are summarised below –


1) It is engendered discrimination inequality and prejudices among people.


2) As per Verna system some people undeclared brahmins, Kshatriya and Vaisya, that is the upper caste. While a majority of others as Shudra that is the lower caste.


3) This idea of separation and hierarchy has brought drastic changes in social processes since post Vedic Era to colonial and postcolonial period.


4) This ideology imposes caste by birth and compels people to compare his or her skills only to hereditary occupations, like son of barber will do hair cutting, son of cobbler will be a cobbler only, etc.


5) This ideology has divided the society and it was the only reason for existence of slavery system in India for more than two centuries in past.


6) As per caste system every person has a distinct caste and every caste has a specified place in the hierarchy of caste system.


7) Ideas of separation and hierarchy proved beneficial for some castes while others are condemned to a life of endless labour and subordination.


8) Each caste has its own place in the system and cannot be taken by other caste. It allows no mobility.


9) Different and separated castes do not have an individual existence and they can only exist in relation to a larger whole the totality of society consisting of all Castes.


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