the “Native”, Educating the Nation
Q33. Why many British officials criticized the Orientalists?
Ans. From the early nineteenth century many British
officials began to criticise the Orientalist vision of learning. They said that
knowledge of the East was full of errors and unscientific thought; Eastern
literature was 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.
Q34. What measures were taken by the English Education Act of
Enumerate three features of the English Education Act of 1835.
What were the provisions of English Education Act of 1835?
Ans. Measures taken by the English Education Act of
English was made the medium of instruction
for higher education.
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”.
English textbooks began to be produced for
Q35. Why did Mahatma Gandhi think that English education had
Ans. Mahatma Gandhi thought that English education had
enslaved Indians because:
Colonial education created a sense of
inferiority in the minds of Indians.
It made them see Western civilisation as
superior, and destroyed the pride they had in their own culture.
Indians educated in these institutions
began admiring British rule.
Q36. What measures were taken by the British after issuing of
Explain the measures introduced by the British following the 1854
Ans. Following the 1854 Despatch, several measures
were introduced by the British.
Education departments of the government
were set up to extend control over all matters regarding education.
Steps were taken to establish a system of
university education. Universities were established in Calcutta, Madras and
Attempts were also made to bring about
changes within the system of school education.
Q37. How were the views of Tagore and Mahatma Gandhi on the west
What were the differences between the educational views of
Mahatma Gandhi and Rabindranath Tagore?
What were the differences between Mahatma Gandhi and
Rabindranath Tagore’s views on English education?
How Tagore's views were different from Mahatma Gandhi regarding
Ans. In many senses Tagore and Mahatma Gandhi thought
about education in similar ways. There were, however, differences too. Gandhiji
was highly critical of Western civilisation and its worship of machines and
technology. Tagore wanted to combine elements of modern Western civilisation
with what he saw as the best within Indian tradition. He emphasized the need to
teach science and technology at Santiniketan, along with art, music and dance.
Q38. Why did James Mill and think that European education was
essential in India?
Ans. James Mill and Thomas Macaulay criticized the Orientalists.
to James mill, the aim of education ought to be to teach what was useful and
practical. So Indians should be made familiar with the scientific and technical
advances that the West had made, rather than with the poetry and sacred literature
of the Orient.
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 thus be
a way of civilising people, changing their tastes, values and culture.
Q39. Why did many company officials in India want to promote Indian
rather than western learning?
Ans. Many Company officials argued that the British
ought to promote Indian rather than Western learning. This so because:
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 with, 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 “natives”; only then could the alien
rulers expect to be respected by their subjects.