There was something very particular on that morning in Jardim Nakamura, a peripheral neighbourhood of the megacity São Paulo. With his long kurta and friendly smile, Manish Jain, a social activist from India, walked through the narrow streets, greeting strangers along the way and hugging them. It was the beginning of his ‘unlearning’ journey to the favelas of Brazil.

I came to know his work on radical education a decade ago during my travels in India. He studied at Harvard and worked for Wall Street and international development agencies. He became disillusioned with formal education and ...


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