Re: DSM: dancing

Anne and Theo Julienne (
Tue, 23 Jan 2001 17:25:31 +1100

We can never eradicate injustice or adversity. Our children need the
resilience to work their ways through what life will bring them. But in
this, I am sympathetic with Sudbury because it fosters what you call that
sense of "self" (what my son calls his "compass"). Coercion over-rides that
sense and that compass and leads to loss of soul. But, oddly, there are
always a few who can lead their fellows into wider freedom. And, if not, can
lead their fellow prisoners to mock and laugh at their oppressors. There are
some kids in mainstream schools that excel at this sort of thing.
As you say, human beings are equipped with a capacity to respond to events
in a great variety of ways, some of them quite unexpected.

> Anne suggests:
> > Look at the feelings in Scott's "Essay on Injustice" and tell him how to
> > apply calliope music to those so as to turn them around.
> I take your point. There are injustices, which are not to be laughed at,
> are to be dealt with. It is my experience, though, that those who maintain
> strong senses of "self" are those who come through injustice with as
> damage as possible. I think of Nelson Mandela who, though I don't think
> prison was "good" for him, spent 27 years in brutal conditions and,
> of focusing on how awful his life circumstances were, focused on his
> and his struggle. I think of kids in ghettos here in the States who don't
> let the gang life overtake them and who survive and even flourish in
> horrible environments.
> None of this is to say that we ought, therefore, to ignore injustice,
> oppression, etc. simply because it is possible to survive them relatively
> unscathed.
> ~Alan

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