Thanks Arka for an important essay. It reminded me of my own schooldays, which occurred in various countries we now term "developing nations." Like your memories, mine contain a great deal of brutality. Unlike you, I was fortunate enough to move every couple of years so I never absorbed the "this is how things are around here" mentality. And as a white boy I undoubtedly had privileges others lacked. Which is why I was almost always able to stand up to bullying teachers, in one case breaking the cane with which one attempted to strike me. I also invented a fierce father who, if called upon to visit the school, would certainly inflict terrible damage on any teacher foolish enough to incur his wrath. Astonishingly, this bluff was never called. When teaching is a low-income profession it will inevitably attract those who come not for the salary but for the "fringe benefits" of being able to exercise absolute power over the young and powerless.

Anyone who enjoys my articles here on Medium may be interested in my books Why Democracy Failed and The Praying Ape, both available from Amazon.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store