Friday , October 7 2022
Sarees of Kanchipuram

NCERT 9th Class (CBSE) Social Science: Clothing: A Social History

Question: What does the change in styles of clothing linked with?

Answer: Changes in styles of clothing are thus linked up with shifts in cultural tastes and notions of beauty, with changes within the economy and society, and with issues of social and political conflict.

Question: What were Sumptuary Laws?

Answer: The laws which tried to control the behavior of those considered socially inferiors, preventing them from wearing certain clothes consuming certain food and beverages.

Question: Name any four materials which could only be used by the royals under the ‘Sumptuary Laws’.


  1. Ermine
  2. Fur
  3. Silk
  4. Velvet

Question: Who were Sans culottes?

Answer: They were the members of Jacobin clubs who wore the fashionable knee breeches to distinguish themselves from the aristocracy. San culottes literally meant ‘those without knee breeches.’

Question: What were the main motives of the ‘Sumptuary Laws’?


  1. The laws tried to control, the behavior of those who were considered social inferiors.
  2. To set up a dress code.

Question: “The end of sumptuary laws did not mean that everyone in European societies could now dress in the same way”. Explain by giving examples.


  1. Difference in earning, rather than Sumptuary laws, now defined what the rich and the poor could wear.
  2. Styles of clothing also emphasized differences between men and women.
    Women in Victorian England were groomed from childhood to be docile and dutiful, submissive and obedient. Norms of clothing reflected these ideals. From childhood, girls were tightly laced up and dressed in stays.

Question: Mention any two materials which were used to manufacture clothes before the 17th century.

Answer: Flax and linen.

Question: What was the impact of the Industrial Revolution on the clothing in Europe?


  1. Cotton clothes became more accessible to a wider section of the people in Europe.
  2. With the introduction of the artificial fibers, clothes became cheaper.

Question: Why was there a change in the clothing patterns of women during the two World Wars?


  1. The wars forced the women to work in factories. As they went out to work they needed clothes that were comfortable and convenient.
  2. As now, they were working women, they also stopped wearing jewellery and luxurious clothes.

Question: What was the importance of turban in the Indian dress code?


  1. It was a source of protection from the heat.
  2. It was also a sign of respect-ability and could not be removed at will.

Question: ‘A nationalist feeling swept across India by the late 19th century, Indians began devising cultural symbols that would express the unity of the nation’. Mention any two such cultural symbols used by the Indians.


  1. A national style of art was adopted.
  2. Poets wrote national songs.

Question: “During the colonial period there were significant changes in male and female clothing in India.” Mention any two factors responsible for this.


  1. There was a change in clothing due to western influence and missionary activities.
  2. It was also due to the efforts by Indians to fashion clothing styles that embodied an indigenous tradition and culture

Question: Which was the first community to adapt a western-style of clothing? Give reason.

Answer: Parsis of western India were among the first to adapt a western-style of clothing.


  1. They were more close to the Britishers due to their trade links.
  2. Western clothes were a sign of modernity and progress.

Question: What was the cause of tension between Shanar caste people with that of the Nairs?


  1. The main cause of tension was over the issue of wearing clothes. The Nairs were people of upper caste whereas Shanars of lower caste.
  2. During that period lower caste people were not allowed to cover their upper bodies.

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One comment

  1. Very good – Improved a lot.