Theories of Social Change Sociology YouTube Lecture Handouts

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Theories of Social Change Cyclical, Indological, Pendulum Theory

Cyclic Theory of Social Change

  • Society changes from one stage to another
  • But comes back to previous position
  • โ€œHistory repeats itselfโ€

Indological Theory

Based on Indian mythology

Indological Theory

Challenge Response Theory

  • Arnold Toyanbee
  • Book โ€“ The History of Man
  • Three stages of social change:
    • In 1st stage, Creative minorities respond to challenges efficiently
    • 2nd stage, they lose the zeal โ€“ leads to ups and downs
    • 3rd stage, society is finished โ€“ birth of new society
  • Society goes through three stages โ€“ Birth, maturity and death
  • This cycle repeats

Pendulum Theory of Social Change

  • Pitrim Sorokin
  • Book โ€“ The Cultural Dynamics
  • Also called โ€“ Saturation theory of social change
  • Movement of society towards two extremes
  • Studied history of Roman society
  • Cultural theory of social change
  • Three types of culture:
    • Ideational: Dominated by spiritual world
    • Sensate: Dominated by materialism and pleasure
    • Idealistic: Midpoint between the other two

Pendulum Theory

Pendulum Theory


Q. Who among the following has considered that history fluctuates between two kinds of culture-sensate and ideational during the phase of social change?

(a) Comte

(b) Spencer

(c) Hobhouse

(d) Sorokin

Answer: d

Q. Culture, according to Sorokin is ________

a. A certain way of thinking held by members of the society at a particular time

b. Set of attitudes

c. Actions reflected by attitudes in daily life

d. All of the above

Answer: d


#Theories of social change

#social change


0: 00 Theories of Social Change

0: 10 Cyclic Theory of Social Change

0: 59 Indological Theory

1: 20 Challenge Response Theory

2: 36 Pendulum Theory of Social Change

4: 50 Criticism of Pendulum Theory

7: 09 MCQ about Theories of Social Change

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โœ Manishika