This past Monday United States prisons schools scored a major win. Finding themselves running out of subjects with which to bore, punish, demean, and ultimately dim the spirits of otherwise curious children, schools will now have at their disposal a structured form of stretching-with-breath, known to a minority as “Yoga,” to achieve their goals.
Unsatisfied with the ways in which children have recently been making subjects such as statistics (meme trending), science (enthenogenic studies), history (Howard Zinn), and the arts (grafitti) fun again, schools have been clamoring for a way to once again make learning seem like a punishment. Prison-like conditions, while having an initial negative effect on a children’s natural inclination to want to learn, have, with the popularity of AMC’s The Walking Dead, been reimagined by students as post-apocalyptic landscapes within which they have been eagerly expanding their imaginations.
Much to school administrator’s chagrin, children have taken what little they can from their lackluster formal studies and have been applying it to more immediate interests outside the prison walls. State-sanctioned homophobia is being challenged by a booming excitement over “queer theory.” Economic inequality is being challenged by Occupy Wallstreet and #hashtag resistance. Institutionalized art exhibits in un-fun meant-for-old-people museums are being replaced with illegal abandoned subway performances. Organized religion is being challenged by post-postmodern polyamorous ayahuasca warehouse covens (no link for you!). All of it initiated by young people of the pre- post-prison school system.
Having no recourse with which to keep students in attendance, schools have finally resorted to “Yoga” as a way in which to entice students, as well as donors, to continue propping up out-dated school systems as the dominant model for learning. Funded by the K.P. Jois Foundation (AKA Jois Yoga??? shhhhhh), which in recent years has come across as nothing less than an attempted corporate takeover of the less-yoga-clothes-centric practice of Ashtanga Yoga, the possibility of getting “Yoga” taught in US schools has spawned more cuddle puddles than a third-term Obama campaign, complete with high-fives and placards reading “Yes we can!”
And, US schools that can’t seem to get a textbook that has a proper reading on slavery or the genocide of Native Americans are getting in on the fun, not realizing that when that first kid experiences her Kundalini shoot through her brain, the school nurse might need more than a Jolly Rancher to put it back in place.
Always good to suss out the prize before you claim the win.
As an addendum, here’s an article on the center-less revolts popping up around the globe (Turkey, Brasil, et al). Will mainstream schools be next to adopt anarchist-influenced horizontal systems of organization?