Eating is an agricultural act - Wendell Berry

Friday, August 08, 2008

lets spin yarn

gandhi advocated several radical ideas.
one of them is using khadi spinning in schools - as a means to educate children and finance the school.
Education to be universal must therefore be free. I fancy that even under an ideal system of government, we shall not be able to devote two thousand million rupees which we should require for finding education for all the children of school-going age. It follows, therefore, that our children must be made to pay in labour partly or wholly for all the education they receive. Such universal labour to be profitable can only be (to my thinking) hand-spinning and hand-weaving. But for the purposes of my proposition, it is immaterial whether we have spinning or any other form of labour, so long as it can be turned to account. Only, it will be found upon examination, that on a practical, profitable and extensive scale, there is no occupation other than the processes connected with cloth-production which can be introduced in our schools throughout India.
prima facie, it does appear as nonsense.
i recall that he also takes a moralistic stand on the fact that the money earned from taxing alcohol and tobacco is used to finance education and such monies are 'tainted'.

well.... my opinions have wavered significantly on this.
finally i am now at a place, where i entirely agree with his proposition.

and i found a school that does have spinning as part of the curriculum.
Shishuvan in Mumbai. superb name.
Check their FAQ site - which says why khadi?

i dont think current economics allow a financing arrangement in urban settings.
but gandhi did center most of his ideas on rural settings - where it is still possible/probable.