Sociology Daily Answer Writing (15-12-2022)


  1. Examine the statement “Bureaucracy is a rational action in an institutional form”. 10
  2. What is class struggle? Apply the Marxian conception of class struggle to understand the recent farm protests and crisis in India?       20

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Model Solutions

Q1. Examine the statement “Bureaucracy is a rational action in an institutional form”. 10

Model Structure

  • Define bureaucracy and legal rational action

Main Body

  • Bureaucracy is the medium through which rational-legal authority is carried out
  • Weber studied it and made an IDEAL TYPE for Bureaucracy based on legal-rational authority.
  • Inevitable in modern society -- as it’s the only mechanism to cope up with large-scale admin requirements
  • Explain rational action
  • Critical Analysis
    • Specialist without spirits
    • Iron cage of rationality
    • Rule ritualism and loss of individual creativity. It leads to red-tapism (Merton)
    • Official dictatorship kind (Master and Mistress of their own will)
    • Nexus and influence of others over bureaucracy
  • Roberto Michels - Calls bureaucratic sys in democracy as iron law of oligarchy - as they usurp all power
  • Merton - over emphasis on rules led to goal displacement


  • Yet, Bureaucracy is transforming itself according to change in the social system. It could adapt to social and admin changes. Examples-
    • Digitalization - less hierarchical
    • In India, lateral entry adoption in top-level bureaucracy

Q2. What is class struggle? Apply the Marxian conception of class struggle to understand the recent farm protests and crisis in India? 20

Model Structure

  • According to Marx “history of hitherto existing society is history of class struggle”, he also states that class struggle acts as an engine of history, i.e., conflict between two classes in every mode of production is the force behind historical developments.

Main Body

  • Define Class and explain types of classes
    • Class is a group of people who share common relations to FoP → As a result, there are two class:
      (a) Ownership class: Those who own and control the FoP. (Haves)
      (b) Non-ownership class: Those who do not own the FoP. (Have nots)
  • Class Struggle
    • Social organisation based on private property → Haves and have nots → Pauperisation of have nots → objective opposition of interests (CLASS IN ITSELF) → Subjective awareness (CLASS FOR ITSELF) → Conflict → Class Struggle
    • Explain reason and objective of these protests (abolition of dominance of private players in procurement of farmers produce and demands for reform in contract farming laws)
    • New laws reflecting interests of bourgeoisie (according to protestors)
      (Note: try to have a detached view)
  • Marx: in advanced capitalist society everything is seen as a commodity (land of farmers) and bourgeoisie fix the price for everything (farmers produce) to maximize their profits
  • As predicted by Marx capitalist forces with profit motive leads to pauperization of farmers i,e,. They are forced to sell their produce at less price and forced to lend their lands to MNC with regulations favoring MNC. Thus farmers demand for better pay leading to conflict of interest between two classes
  • Hitherto unaware (CLASS IN ITSELF) farmers about their subjugation are now aware of their rights .Collective consciousness develops among farmers about their rights and they are now aware of methods to express their demands such as peaceful protests, meeting with gov delegation etc (CLASS FOR ITSELF) .
    • This transformation leads to conflict in society in various forms
  • [Various crises such as labour crisis, environmental crisis, etc can also be explained by class struggle theory. Ex: Anti sterlite protest against factories in Tamilnadu (against capitalistic tendency of environmental pollution), trade unions protest against privatization of railways etc.]


  • However, as predicted by Marx, class conflict does not lead to overthrow of the existing system, because other forces such as the government acts as an agent to stabilize the system by catering the needs of farmers in current protests.
  • Thus, as predicted by Weber, capitalism alters itself according to the situation and it is also limited by government interventions.

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