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Social Changes
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Social Changes

Post by on Friday, March 18, 2022

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The traditional society which has always paid tribute to its copious culture, its art, its legacy, its ethnicity, its values and norms is now heading towards a perceivable state of degeneration and decadence. Dilemmas due to formal controls are obstructing smooth functioning of informal controls that this society has given to itself to stay its course. Over the years, especially in the Kashmir valley, the very essence of social fabric has got tampered and resulted in unacceptable behaviors. While the people spend more and more time complaining about day-after-day problems – problems due to formal controls, problems relating governance, problems relating politics, problems relating administration, policies, etc., they award less time and exhibit less commitment to eliminate social problems. Informal social control mechanisms embedded in social values and expressed as shame, honor, respect, criticism, sarcasm, humor, praise and ostracize at the extreme have been left out untended. Examples to be set as inspirations by leadership, by people vested with authority and patrons have been scanty and too feeble to reinforce positive social control. Informal controls have been so much downplayed that important value expressions meant to regulate social behavior like shame has been rendered ineffective. Consider the case with fighting corruption. Formal controls in the form of severe punishable laws and informal controls like public shame and ostracizing are essential means to put it under check. Government is responsible and accountable for taking care of the first and the society – people are responsible to take care of the latter. As it turns out both government as well as people have shown their apathy and lacking will to eliminate the evil. In many traditional societies public sanction is vital to eliminate the unacceptable behavior and there is a valid argument of such acts serving as deterrent. There has been a lot of debate on both types of social control mechanisms – policing and moral policing. Traditional and modern, conservatives and liberals – almost all forward their opinions, their arguments and reservations. The debates carry forward and mark their turning points when social evils in the form of crimes like rapes, molestations, murders, assaults, thefts, etc., start appearing on the surface. Time never stops, and what we do individually contributes to what we do collectively, which in turn defines the kind of life that goes on. It is time for the people to introspect and decide whether they prefer their behaviour to be controlled by misgivings and grievances or prefer to take control over their own behaviour and set things right.








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