Class 8 History Chapter 7 Civilising the Native, Educating the Nation Important Questions

CBSE Class 8 History Chapter 7 Civilising the Native, Educating the Nation Important Questions cover the major concepts of the chapter. Solving answers of these important questions help students to revise the Chapter most competently. We prepared these questions as per the latest NCERT book and CBSE syllabus. Practising the questions before the exam will ensure excellent marks in the exam.

CBSE Class 8 History Chapter 7 Important Questions PDF

Very Short Answer Type Questions

1: Name the different languages that William Jones studied.
Answer: Greek, Latin, English, French, Arabic and Persian.

2: Why was Calcutta Madrasa set up?
Answer: Calcutta Madrasa was set up to promote the study of Arabic, Persian and Islamic law.

3: Why was the Hindu College established in Benaras?
Answer: The Hindu College was established in Benaras to encourage the study of ancient Sanskrit texts that would be useful for the. administration of the country.

4: Name two individuals who sharply attacked the Orientalists.
Answer: James Mill and Thomas Babington Macaulay.

5: What did Thomas Macaulay urge the British government in India?
Answer: Thomas Macaulay urged the British government in India to stop wasting public money in promoting Oriental learning for it was of no practical use.

6: How were Oriental institutions like the Calcutta Madrasa and Benaras Sanskrit College viewed by the British?
Answer: These Oriental institutions were viewed as temples of darkness that were falling of themselves into decay.

7: Name the places where the British established universities.
Answer. Calcutta, Madras and Bombay.

8: Where were classes held under the system of pathshalas?
Answer: Classes were held under a banyan tree or in the comer of a village shop or temple or at the guru’s home.

9: What type of education was given to the children in pathshalas? 
Answer: Children were given oral education in pathshalas.

10: Why were classes not held during harvest time? 
Answer: It was because rural children had to work in the fields during harvest time.

11: What task was assigned to the pandit by the Company?
Answer: The Company assigned the pandit to visit the pathshalas and try to improve the standard of teaching.

12: Name two Indians who reacted against Western education.
Answer: Mahatma Gandhi and Rabindranath Tagore.

13: What do you mean by Tagore’s abode of peace?
Answer: Tagore’s Shantmiketan was established in a rural setting, 100 kilometres away from Calcutta. As it was far from the din and bustle of the city it was an abode of peace.

14: How did Tagore view his school namely Shantmiketan?
Answer: He viewed his school as an abode of peace where living in harmony with nature, children would cultivate their natural creativity.

15. Why did the British decide to educate the Indians? 

Answer: The British in India wanted not only territorial conquest and control over revenues. They also felt that they had a cultural mission: they had to “civilize the natives”, change their customs and values. 

Short Answer Type Questions

1: Why did many Company officials in India want to promote Indian rather than Western learning?

Answer: Many Company officials felt that institutions should be set up to encourage the study of ancient Indian texts and teach Sanskrit and Persian literature and poetry. These officials were of the opinion that Hindus and Muslims ought to be taught what they were already familiar with and what they valued and preserved, not subjects that were alien to them. They believed that only by doing this the British could win the hearts of the Indians, only then they could expect to be respected by their subjects.

2: What were the views of other Company officials?

Answer: Other Company officials did not approve the ideas of the Orientalists. They began to criticise the Orientalist- vision of learning. They saved that the knowledge of the East was full of errors and unscientific thought. They saw Eastern literature as non-serious and light-hearted. So, they argued that it was wrong on the part of the British to spend so much effort in encouraging the study of Arabic and Sanskrit language and literature.

3: Define the term ‘vernacular’. Why did the British use this term in colonial countries like India?

Answer: The term Vernacular’ refers to a local language or dialect as distinct from what is known as the standard language.
In colonial countries like India, the British used this term to mark the difference between the local languages of everyday use and English, the language of the imperial masters.

4: What measures were taken by the English Education Act of 1835?

Answer: The following measures were taken under the English Education Act 1835:
(a) English was made the medium of instruction for higher education.
(b) Promotion of Oriental institutions like the Calcutta Madrasa and Benaras Sanskrit College was stopped. These institutions were seen as temples of darkness that were falling of themselves into decay.
(c) English textbooks began to be produced for schools.

5: What measures were taken by the British after issuing of Wood’s Despatch?

Answer: Following measures were taken:
(a) Education departments of the government were set up to extend
control over all matters regarding education.
(fa) A system of universities education was introduced. Universities were established in Calcutta, Madras and Bombay.
(c) Attempts were also made to bring about changes within the system of school education.

6: How were the views of Tagore and Mahatma Gandhi on the West different?

Answer: Both Tagore and Mahatma Gandhi thought about education in similar ways. But there were differences too. Gandhiji was highly critical of Western civilisation and its worship of machines and technology. Tagore wanted to combine elements of modem Western civilisation with what he saw as the best within Indian tradition. He emphasised the need to teach science and technology at Shantiniketan alongwith art, music and dance.

7. Why did Mahatma Gandhi want to teach children handicraft? 

Answer: Mahatma Gandhi wanted to teach children handicraft because that would develop their minds and their capacity to understand. This would also enable them to know how different things operated. This would help them to have lived experience and practical knowledge. 

Long Answer Type Questions

1: What was Wood’s Despatch? What were its provisions?

Answer: The Court of Directors of the East India Company in London sent an educational despatch to the Governor- General in India in the year 1854. As the despatch was issued by Charles Wood, the President of the Board of Control of the Company, it came to be known as Wood’s Despatch. ‘Wood’s Despatch outlined the educational policy that was to be followed in India. It criticised the Oriental knowledge and emphasised the need of European learning.

The Despatch made it clear that European learning would enable Indians to recognise the benefits that would flow from the expansion of trade and commerce. It would also make them see the importance of developing country’s resources. Indians needed to adopt European ways of life because this would change their tastes and desires and create a demand for British goods.

Wood’s Despatch further argued that European learning would improve the moral character of the people of India. It would make them honest and reliable and thus supply trusted civil servants to the Company.

The Despatch strongly criticised the literature of the East because it was full of errors and unable to instill in people a sense of duty and a commitment to work.

2: What measures were undertaken by the Company to improve the system of vernacular education?
Or
How were the irregularities of pathshalas checked by the Company?

Answer: There were no rules and regulations in pathshalas. Hence, the Company decided to improve the entire system. It took several measures:
(a) It appointed a number of government pandits, each in charge of looking after four to five schools. The task of the pandit was to visit the pathshalas and try and improve the standard of teaching.
(b) Each guru was asked to submit periodic reports and take classes according to a regular time table.
(c) Teaching was now to be based on textbooks and learning was to be tested through a system of annual examination.
(d) Students were asked to pay a regular fee, attend regular classes, sit on fixed seats, and obey the new rules of discipline.

3: What type of education did Mahatma Gandhi want in India?

Answer: Mahatma Gandhi never approved English education because it had created a feeling of inferiority in the minds of millions of Indians. In fact he wanted an education that could help the people of India restore their sense of dignity and self-respect. During the time of the national movement he urged students to leave educational institutions to show the British that they could no longer enslave Indians.

Mahatma Gandhi never wanted English to be the medium of teaching. Instead he thought that students ought to be taught in the medium of Indian languages. Education in English crippled the people of India. It distanced them from their own surroundings. It made them alien in their own lands. Hence, he felt that English education ought not to flourish in India any more.

He urged that education ought to develop a person’s mind and soul. Simply learning to read and write did not matter at all. People had to learn a craft and know how different things operated. This would definitely develop their mind and their capacity to understand.

4: Write a note on Rabindranath Tagore and his school Shantiniketan.

Answer: Rabindranath Tagore, like Mahatma Gandhi, also did not approve Western education wholeheartedly. At the time when several Indians urged the British to open more and more schools, colleges and universities in order to spread English education in India, Rabindranath Tagore reacted strongly against such education.

He was a great educationist But he hated going to school because he saw it oppressive. In fact he wanted to establish a school where the children were happy and were free to explore their thoughts and desires without feeling any suppression. He advocated for giving children natural surroundings where they would be able to cultivate their natural creativity.

Keeping the above ideals in mind, Rabindranath Tagore established Shantiniketan in the year 1901. He regarded it as an ‘abode of peace’. He set up his school 100 kilometres away from Calcutta, in a rural setting in order to provide children a very peaceful environment. Here, they could develop their imagination and creativity. Tagore was of the opinion that existing schools were killing the natural desires of the children to be creative. Hence, it was necessary to help them develop their curiosity by providing them good teachers who could understand them. By establishing an institution like Shantiniketan he did a great job in the field of education.

5. Who was William Jones? 

Answer: 

  • In 1783, a person named William Jones arrived in Calcutta. He had an appointment as a junior judge at the Supreme Court that the company had set up. In addition to being an expert in law, Jones was a linguist. 
  • He had studied Greek and Latin at Oxford knew French and English, had picked up Arabic from a friend, and had also learnt Persian. 
  • At Calcutta, he began spending many hours a day with pandits who taught him the subtleties of Sanskrit language, grammar and poetry. 
  • Jones discovered the ancient Indian heritage, mastered and Persian works into English. He had set upped the Asiatic society of Bengal and started a journal called Asiatic’ Researchers. 
  • He shared deep respect for ancient cultures, both of India and West. 

6. Describe the attitude of Colebrook towards India. 

Answer: 

  • Colebrook came to represent a particular attitude forwards India. 
  • He had a deep respect for ancient cultures, both of India and the West Indian civilization. 
  • He felt, 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. 
  • For 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 future development in India. 
  • Colebrook went about discovering ancient texts, understanding their meaning translating them, and making their findings known to others. 
  • This project, he believed, would not help Indians rediscover their own heritage, and understand the lost glories of their past. In this process, the British would become the guardians of Indian culture as well as its masters. 

7. When was English Education Act introduced and what were its features? 

Answer: The English Education Act was introduced in 1835. It was introduced by Macaulay It’s features were:

English was made the medium of instruction for higher education. English textbook began to be produced for schools. And to stop the promotion of Oriental institutions like the Calcutta Madrasa and Banaras Sanskrit College. These institutions were seen as “temples of darkness that were falling of themselves into decay”. 

8. What were Gandhi’s view on British Education? 
Or 
Why did Mahatma Gandhi think that English education has enslaved Indians? 

Answer: Mahatma Gandhi argued that colonial education created a sense of inferiority in the minds of Indians. It made them see Western civilization as superior, and destroyed the pride they had in their own culture. 

There was poison in this education, said Mahatma Gandhi, it was sinful, it enslaved. Indians, it cast an evil spell on them.  Mahatma Gandhi wanted an education that could help Indians recover their sense of dignity and self – respect.  During the national movement he urged students to leave educational institutions in order to show the British that Indians were no longer willing to be enslaved. 

Education in English crippled Indians, distanced them from their own social surroundings, and made them “strangers in their own lands”. Speaking a foreign tongue, despising local culture, the English educated did not know how to relate to the masses. 

Western education, Mahatma Gandhi said, focused on reading and writing rather than oral knowledge; it valued textbooks rather than lived experience and practical knowledge.  He argued that education ought to develop a person’s mind and soul.

9. Write a short note on Tagore’s “abode of peace”. 

Answer: Tagore wanted to set up a school where the child was happy, where she could be free and creative, where she was able to explore her own thoughts and desires. Tagore felt that childhood ought to be a time of self –learning, outside the rigid and restricting discipline of the schooling system set up by the British. Teachers had to be imaginative, understand the child, and help the  child develop her curiosity. According to Tagore, the existing schools killed the natural desire of the child to be creative, her sense of wonder. Tagore was of the view that creative learning could be encouraged only within a natural environment. So he chose to set up his school 100 kilometers away from Calcutta, in a rural 

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

Answer: 

  • Jones shared a deep respect for ancient cultures, both of India and the West. Indian civilization, he felt, 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. 
  • For 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 future development in India. 

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

Answer: James Mill thought that the British effort should met be to teach what the natives wanted, or what they respected in order to please them and “win a peace in their heart”. 

James Mill and Thomas Macaulay thought that European education would enable Indians to recognize the advantages that flow from the expansion of trade and commerce and make them see the importance of developing the resources of the country. 

  • Introducing European ways of life would change their tastes and desires and create a demand for British goods, because Indians would begin to appreciate and buy things that were produced in Europe. 
  • It would also improve the moral character of Indians. It would make them truthful and honest and thus supply the company with civil servants who could be trusted and demanded upon. It could also instill in people a sense of duty and commitment to work and develop the skills required for administration. 
  • Macaulay felt that knowledge of English would allow Indians to read some of the finest literature the world had produced. It would make them aware of the developments in Western Science and philosophy. Teaching of English could civilize peoplesetting. He saw it as an abode of peace (santiniketan), where living in harmony with nature, children could cultivate their natural creativity. 

12. What according to the British was their responsibility towards India? 

Answer: They felt that institutions should be set up to encourage the study of ancient Indian texts and teach Sanskrit and Persian literature and poetry. The officials also thought that Hindus and Muslims ought to be taught what they were already familiar and what they valued and treasured 

not subjects that were alien to them. Only them, they believed, could the British hope to win a place in the hearts of the “native”, only them could the alien rubbers expect to be respected by their subjects. 

13. Mention the two schools of thought which wanted to introduce education in India? 

Answer: They felt that institutions should be set up to encourage the study of ancient Indian texts and teach Sanskrit and Persian literature and poetry. The officials also thought that Hindus and Muslims ought to be taught what they were already familiar and what they valued and treasured 

not subjects that were alien to them. Only then, they believed could the British hope to win a place in the hearts of the “native”, only then could the alien rulers expect to be respected by their subjects. 

14. Describe the differences of opinion between the orientalists and the anglicists. 

Answer: 

ORIENTALISTS 

  • Orientalists thought in order to understand India it was necessary to discover the sacred and legal texts that were produced in the ancient period. 
  • They thought that Eastern education would help Indian rediscover their own heritage and understand the lost geories of their past as well as it would help the British become the guardians of Indian culture and masters. 
  • They also believed for the British, in order to win a place in the hearts of the “natives”. Indians ought to be taught what they were already familiarwith once what they valued not subjects that were have to them.

ANGLICISTS 

  • Anglicists said that knowledge of the East were full of errors and unscientific thought, Eastern literature was won –serious and light hearted. 
  • Anglicist thought the aim of educations ought to be teach what was useful and practical. So Indians should be made familiar with the scientific and technical advances that the had made. 
  • They felt that knowledge of English would make the Indians aware of the developments in Western science and philosophy. Teaching of English could this be a way of civilizing people, changing their castes, values and culture. 

15. What steps did the East India Company take to improve the system of vernacular educations? 

Answer:

  1. East India Company appointed a number of government pundits, each in charge of looking after four to five schools 
  2. The task of the pundit was to visit the path shapes and try and improve the standard of teaching. Each guru was asked to submit periodic reports and take classes according to a regular timetable. 
  3. Teaching was now based on textbooks and learning was tested through annual examination. 
  4. Students were asked to pay regular fees, attend regular classes, sit on fixed seats and obey the new rules of discipline. 
  5. Pathshalas which accepted the new rules were supported through government grants. Those who were unwilling to work within the new system received no government support
You cannot copy content of this page