Pedagogy of the Oppressed

Pedagogy of the Oppressed

By Ainshra Showkat

I am a school going student who is taught that the objective of education is specified by the prescribed syllabus and get good marks in the examination. We are taught to be conformists.
We are nurtured in a domestic system of education where we have to accept and reproduce information uncritically.
Education is a tool of liberation. Kashmiri children are emerging from submersion and deepening their attitude by conscientization and reflective thinking . Syllabus is framed in such a way that it is an act of depositing oppressive elements so that we groom in a culture of silence.
We are treated as containers and meek listeners. It is an oppressive policy that the system of education in vogue   is non-participative , resists dialogue , does not evoke challenge, lacks creative and transformatory flavor.
In my history textbook, Bhaghat Singh is reflected as a national hero because he played an instrumental role in the freedom struggle of India.


Unisa Sania

From the window of my house,
In my garden of peace and love,
A blanket of snow on my home ground,
Autumn of chinars, I used to see,
To feel the romantic aroma of flowers.

What a curse descended on it?
A night besieged my paradise,
Avalanched down the ruinous stars,
Wrecked the blooming bulbs,
Razored the lofty, green trees,
Crushed down the high spirited mountains.

On my busted and raped paradise,
Stood up, washed my blood, wiped my tears,
And cried with my head high:
“EYE will see again”.

—Unisa Sania is a student of BA Ist year, Kashmir University

I often ask a question that thousands have sacrificed their life for freedom struggle of Kashmir but why there is no mention of these great heroes in the history textbooks . We are taught about French Revolution, American Revolution but why syllabus is silent about contemporary history, I mean Kashmiri revolution to which we are witness and has a bearing on peace and prosperity of the region once this vexed issue gets resolved as per UN security council resolution of conducting referendum in Kashmir.
In Civics we are taught Democracy is the government of the people, by the people and for the people . But on one the hand India claims to be the biggest democracy in the world and on the other hand it suppresses the voice of dissent by violent methods.
It chokes genuine voice of the people by coercive tactics. Innocent children of my age come on streets unarmed and speak their mind. Thousands of  troops stationed in the valley fully armed kill and disable these innocent souls for life and irony is they are recommended for bravery awards for these coward acts.
To add salt to the fresh wounds India sponsored TV channels justify the killing of these innocent children and the criminal silence on the part of Narendra Modi reflects his viral mindset. Kashmir has been turned into a mass prison with a plan to make them mentally disabled and induce high  stress in them.
In India if a politician has a delinquent son of forty years of age and if  he commits crime he is still treated as a kid on the contrary eight year child in Kashmir who raises the culture of voice is a terrorist.
Hospitals present a horrible scene where even a stone hearted are bound to get stirred but unremorseful  faces of  state chief minister and home minister reflect they are unmoved.
If New Delhi fails to read the writing on the wall it seems to be fully power drunk and peace proposal seem to have no takers by the arrogant approach of New Delhi.
Kashmiris during the past 21  days have stood by  each other and this exemplary show of unity in crisis  is commendable.
One of the basic objective of education is to inculcate the spirit of selfless service , empathy and compassion in children.
I learnt this lesson when I visited SMHS and Bone and Joint hospital. I saw pain and agony around. I was moved. I thought how children who have suffered visual impairment will feel once they are discharged from the hospital.
What about their uncertain dreams because there is no light at the end of the tunnel. If left un-counseled   and without follow up they will display persistent patterns of hyper arousal, behavioral displacement and emotional swings.
Once internalized they will go in deep psychological crisis. The hope of many parents who have brought up their children with lot of expectation got shattered all of a sudden when their child was killed or lost an eye-sight and to adjust with this new devastating change is not going to be easy.
To get sensitized I ask people at the helm of affairs just close your eyes for five minutes and try to do what you have been doing so easily with open eyes , insight will dawn upon you. To register my protest I make a humble pray to the United Nations and Human Rights Organization to impress upon India  to stop use of force on innocent Kashmiris.
Till this political issue is resolved  let us switch to non – formal approach to education by introducing neighborhood schooling .

—The author can been mailed at

One Response to "Pedagogy of the Oppressed"

  1. Koshur   August 6, 2016 at 12:34 pm

    Welcome to the real world kid. These fancy words such as dissent, democracy, social contract, popular sovereignty etc. they are found in the books and they remain confined between the front and back covers of the books.


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