01 October, 2020

A Schoolbag Of Biases

Some of the textbooks in India’s schools are a serious joke

Illustration by Sorit
A Schoolbag Of Biases

Did You Know...

  • Narasimha Rao is still PM in an Urdu textbook in Andhra
  • Pakistan is a part of India
  • Vivekananda was great as he was a Brahmin and fair
  • Only men participate in sport or citizenship


If you were to hand over a map of the United States to a middle school student from any government school in Punjab, he or she is likely to end up spending hours looking for a place that doesn’t exist—Silicon Valley. For the child would have read in his social science textbook that Silicon Valley is a city in the US. Or that heavy industries are called so because they use heavy raw material. It is likely the student wouldn’t even know that Punjab sits atop historical sites that go back to the Harappa and Mohenjodaro civilisation, for all the sites he learns about in his book are from faraway places. And the child would also be convinced that deforestation occurs only when at least 25 per cent of the...



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