Let’s Play Master and Servant – Character Education

PhilBeadle f

Originally posted on PhilBeadle:

I was recently sounded out about speaking at an event devoted to ‘character education’. The organizers were charm personified, but when it was pointed out that I was decidedly not in favour of such a concept being treated seriously in our education system and I would argue against it, they thanked me for my honesty and discontinued their interest. The following is in no way a slur to those organisers, but it has caused me to articulate the reasons behind such vehemence.

I feel much the same about character education as I do about phrases such as the ‘best that has been thought and written’: that they are correlatives through which a Government whose classism appears naked on even on the cloudiest of days, in even the most dimly lit of all possible back rooms, subtly arranges the chairs so that their moral right, their correctness, the near divinity of their customs and the inevitable justness of their ascendance to the position of rule is bludgeoningly reiterated ad nauseum, (recall here Orwell’s image of a boot stamping on a human face forever)…

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