I watched an old classic recently, Inherit the Wind. The 1960 film is based on a true story about a teacher who was presenting Darwin’s theory of evolution in the classroom in the southern U.S. in 1925. The lawyer, played by Spencer Tracy, wins by arguing that all of us demand and deserve the right to think.
I’m thinking a lot about education these days and my “right to think.” Although I’m feeling plenty of pressure to conform in academia, I still feel deeply privileged to have this opportunity to learn. Even more so when I see the measures people will go to in order to educate themselves in other parts of the world. This photo popped up on Facebook this week with the following text.
A boy writes on a blackboard painted onto the wall of a building, at a free school under a metro rail bridge, in New Delhi, India. The school was founded by Rajesh Kumar Sharma, who was unable to complete his own college education, because of financial difficulties. Every day he takes two hours out to teach children of local laborers, while his brother replaces him at his general store. Together with an assistant, Laxmi Chandra, Sharma gives lessons to around 45 children daily, having persuaded their families to free them from working to earn money. He aims to prepare his students for admission to government schools, and to equip them for overcoming poverty.
The photographer, Altaf Oadri gives the full story and a gorgeous slide show here.