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13 June 2013

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Melanie B

"They are speaking from behind a cushion of privilege so soft and warm that they cannot even tell it is there. The privilege of people who have never been singled out, who don't have something they might prefer quite reasonably to hide, who are the acceptable people. Who have never had the misfortune to make an enemy with a government job, who have never been embroiled in the justice system or family court, who are content to play by rules without questioning them and have never had the rules come back to bite them, in large part because they belong to the class of people who make the rules."

I wonder about this from a pedagogical standpoint. How can that kind of privilege be compensated for? Isn't it also at least in part a failure of imagination and of empathy? I've never been there but I can imagine being there. I've read so many stories about those kinds of things happening. I can't help but run the scenarios.

So could a good selection of literature help to correct that tendency? Dickens certainly thought so. Can reading stories about good people to whom bad things happen help someone who has never had the experience of the rules coming back to bite him imagine what that would be like? And could that be enough to forestall this kind of stupidity?

bearing

I would think that studying history would be the best antidote, but maybe a good dose of dystopian S/F would help!

Academiccautionarytale.wordpress.com

just wanted to say amen. de-lurking to say i love this and your blog!

bearing

Thanks!

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I think I read something somewhere about this

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