Comprehension Directions: Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions given below it.

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: September 25th, 2023

It is an old saying that knowledge is power. Education is an instrument that imparts knowledge and, therefore indirectly controls power. Therefore, ever since the dawn of civilization, persons in power have always tried to control education. It has been the hand-maid of the ruling class. During the Christian era, the ecclesiastics controlled the institution of education and diffused among the people the gospel of the bible. These gospels were no other than a philosophy for the maintenance of the existing society. This Religious education taught the poor man to be meek and to earn his bread with the sweat of his brow, while the priests and the landlords lived in luxury and fought duels for the slightest offense.

During the Renaissance, education passed more from the clutches of the priest into the hand of the prince. In other words, it became more secular. It was also due to the growth of the nation-state and powerful monarchs who united the country under their rule. Thus, under the control of the monarch, education began to devise and preach the infallibility of its masters. It also invented and supported fantastic theories like the Divine Right Theory and that the king can do no wrong etc.

With the advent of the industrial revolution, education took a different tum and had to please the new masters. It now no longer remained the privilege of the baron class but was thrown open to the newly rich merchant class of society. Yet education was still confined to the few elite. The philosophy which was in vogue during this period was that of ‘Laissez Faire’ restricting the function of the State to a mere keeping of law and order while, on the other hand, in practice, the law of the jungle prevailed in the form of free competition and the survival of the fittest.

Why have persons in power always tried to control education?

  1. because they wanted to educate the whole public
  2. because they wanted to deprive the common man of the benefits of education
  3. because it involved a huge burden on the state exchequer
  4. because it is an instrument of knowledge and power

Persons in power always tried to control education because it is an instrument of knowledge and power, Consider the following passage: It is said that information is power. Education is a tool for spreading information and, as a result, indirectly managing power. Therefore, those in positions of authority have always sought to regulate education since the beginning of civilization. Since education is a tool of knowledge and power, it may be inferred that those in positions of authority have always attempted to regulate it.


Because education is a tool for knowledge and power, those in positions of authority have always tried to influence it.

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