The Importance Of Corporal Punishment In Hong Kong

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Crime is an essential part of the society. It is used as a boundary to regulate our behaviors so as to avoid any detriment to the order of society. It is however difficult to have an unambiguous universal standard for definition of “crime”. There has been great variation in history and across nations as to what has been defined as a crime (Morrison, 2005). Some behaviors were allowed in history, yet, people nowadays behave in the same way will be termed as criminals. One of the conspicuous examples is the outlaw of corporal punishment in schools in Hong Kong in September, 1991. Teachers or administrative staffs who carry out physical punishment would be fined or even taken into jail. Therefore, it is worth discussing the reason for a change in the law and whether crime is a reflection of social conditions.

According to the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child, corporal punishment (CP) is defined as “any punishment in which physical force is used and intended to cause some degree of pain or discomfort, however slight”. So School corporal punishment refers to any physical punishment delivered by teachers or school administrators. To facilitate the reading, “CP” will be used as an abbreviation of corporal punishment in this essay.

To understand why CP was practiced in the past, first we have to look at the culture of education system. Teaching in Hong Kong is deeply rooted by Chinese cultural values from Confucianism. They shape the way of teaching and interacting with

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