Bopara, who struggled in the opening Test, is unavailable for personal reasons.
Nottinghamshire batsman Taylor made his international debut in a ODI against Ireland last year, but is yet to feature at Test level.
He is a highly-rated prospect and recently moved ahead of Eoin Morgan and Jonny Bairstow in the pecking order for the number six spot.
“We were outplayed during the first Test last week but it is important that this squad regroups and focuses on preparing for the second Test," said selector Geoff Miller.
"This is a talented squad with plenty of international experience and they will be determined to improve on the performance during the first Test.
"James has been part of the England Performance Programme for a number of years and has performed consistently for England Lions and now has an opportunity to step up and experience the Test environment.
"We have played a lot of good cricket over the last few years and it’s important we remember that, learn from the mistakes that we made and retain the belief that we can level this series at Headingley."
South Africa, seeking to supplant England as the number one-ranked Test side, won the first Test at The Oval by an innings and 12 runs.
The three-match series concludes at Lord's.
Andrew Strauss (Middlesex) (captain)
James Anderson (Lancashire)
Ian Bell (Warwickshire)
Tim Bresnan (Yorkshire)
Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire)
Alastair Cook (Essex)
Steven Finn (Middlesex)
Graham Onions (Durham)
Kevin Pietersen (Surrey)
Matt Prior (Sussex)
Graeme Swann (Nottinghamshire)
James Taylor (Nottinghamshire)
Jonathan Trott (Warwickshire)