3-idiots (Indian Movie) message to KAIST – All Izz Well
I read this editorial on JoongAng Ilbo by Lee Na-Ree and felt like sharing it here.
Lee, has picked the right movie to put the message across. 3-idiots has been the most successful movie in India and hit the right note with the student community, who gets forced into the system, where the expectations by their peers, parents, teachers and the environment, puts pressure on students for scoring high on exams, getting good grades, getting admission in the top university, getting the best job and the story goes on. Again it is upto the student as to how much they give-in to such pressures.
One gets to hear the same story in Korea. Just that the peer pressure is a bit much higher here as compared to India. Or rather it starts the moment the kid starts speaking. Korean parents expect their kids to talk in English the moment they start uttering their few words. And the trend goes on.
The kid is expected to excel in school, speak English, excel in sports, speak English, excel in college, speak English, excel at finding jobs, excel at his job, speak English, find the perfect bride, have the perfect wedding (and just in case if he has no savings, coz he might have spend all his hard earned money in learning English, then he is doomed).
Anyways, the article below has more to do with the education system at KAIST and with my comments above I am not trying to drive at any point in this conversation. Every society has its own way of functioning. Either you follow the unseen, unspoken society rules or you take the road less traveled. 3-idiots has managed to highlight the seriousness of this issue in a very light-hearted manner with its message – “Whatever the problem in life is… just say to yourself ‘Aal Izz Well’.. (all is well). This wont solve your problems but it will give the courage to face it..”
And Dear Lee, I do not agree with you when you say that the movie was not very sophisticated. Maybe it was not very Korean or western for that matter. But the fact that it did manage to touch the hearts of a billion people across the world (including China) and now you, says a lot about this movie.
You can read the article below by Lee Na-Ree (originally posted on JoongAng Daily)
I was looking for a movie to watch over the weekend and came across the 2009 Indian film “3 Idiots.” I could not take my eyes off the screen for the entire two-hour running time. The film was not sophisticated but touched my heart.
It was set on the campus of an elite engineering university in India (IIT, Bangalore). In the beginning of the movie, the dean of the Imperial College of Engineering bluntly addresses 200 freshmen, calling them a bunch of cuckoo birds who pushed off 400,000 eggs – or other applicants to the university – to get into the nest, and that life is a race in which if you do not get ahead, you could get knocked over.
Three new engineering students who came to share a room in the university dorms are Rancho, Farhan and Raju – or the three idiots, as labeled by the dean of the college. They go against the norms and rules of the campus. Instead of mechanically memorizing the textbooks and following orders of lecturers, they experiment with machines and devices by applying the classroom concepts on their own.
Threatened with expulsion, one of them commits suicide. The dean shrugs it off when the friends call him a murderer, saying that it is not his fault that the student could not put up with the stress. He argues that it was he who turned the school, once 28th in ranking, into the most prestigious university in the country. This all seems to be too familiar.
Kaist, or the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, is one of our country’s most famed polytechnic institutions. Four students committed suicide during the first month of last year. Suh Nam-pyo, Kaist’s no-nonsense president, came under fire for the rigidity he imposed on students and faculty members to keep up with grades and research in the fiercely competitive environment. One more student committed suicide last month and Suh is now being sued. The student body last week formally demanded Suh step down and the alumni association has asked the board to organize a committee to investigate and review the situation.
Since he was recruited from the United States, Suh has devoted his work to turning the university into a world-class institution. But regardless of his endeavors and good intentions, students on the campus hardly have the passion or mind to pursue their studies. Kaist needs a message of hope to get through the dark age of resentment and misunderstanding.
So after reading the article above, what do have to say? Would like to share your views about the education system in Korea? You can use the comment section below to do the same.