Loading...

The Role of Education in Economic Development: A Case Study of Greg Mortenson’s Work in Pakistan and Afghanistan

1. Introduction

"Three Cups of Tea" is a novel written by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin. It was published in 2006 and became an instant bestseller, selling over four million copies in the United States alone. The book tells the story of Mortenson’s work in Pakistan and Afghanistan, where he has built over one hundred schools for girls.

The purpose of this paper is to analyze the novel "Three Cups of Tea" using a number of theories and ideas of International and Comparative Education. In particular, the paper will focus on the following aspects:

– education as a human capital;
– education in times of conflict;
– building schools and teachers’ houses in developing countries.

The paper is structured as follows: first, an overview of the novel "Three Cups of Tea" will be provided. Second, the analysis of the novel in terms of International and Comparative Education will be presented. Finally, some conclusions will be drawn.

2. Overview of the Novel “Three Cups of Tea”

2.1 The Main Characters

The main character of the novel is Greg Mortenson, an American mountaineer who decides to build a school for girls in Pakistan after he fails to climb K2, the world’s second highest mountain. Other important characters include:

– Haji Ali, a Pakistani man who helps Mortenson to build the first school in Korphe;
– Mouzafer Ahmad, a Pakistani doctor who helps Mortenson to find money for his project;
– Azizullah Hussan, a Taliban commander who decides not to destroy Mortenson’s school;
– Jawad Faizi, an Afghan student who helps Mortenson to build a school in Nuristan;
– Colonel Brian Eggleston, an American military officer who helps Mortenson to build a school in Zabul Province.

2. 2 The Plot

The story begins with Mortenson’s unsuccessful attempt to climb K2, the world’s second highest mountain. After he becomes lost and starts suffering from altitude sickness, he is rescued by Haji Ali, a Pakistani man from the village of Korphe. Haji Ali invites Mortenson to stay with him and his family, and Mortenson soon realizes that the people in Korphe are very poor and that their children do not have access to education. He decides to build a school for them.

With the help of Haji Ali and Mouzafer Ahmad, a Pakistani doctor, Mortenson manages to find money for his project and starts building the school. However, construction is soon interrupted by the outbreak of war between Pakistan and India. When hostilities cease, construction resumes but is once again halted, this time by extremist groups who consider schools for girls to be un-Islamic. Despite death threats from the Taliban, Mortenson persists with his project and eventually manages to complete the school.

3. Analysis of the Novel “Three Cups of Tea” in Terms of International and Comparative Education

3. 1 Education as a Human Capital

One of the key ideas discussed in the novel is education as a human capital. This idea was first put forward by the economist Adam Smith, who argued that education increases a person’s productive capacity and, as such, is a key driver of economic growth. The idea of education as a human capital has been further developed by a number of economists, including David McClelland and Gary Becker.

McClelland argued that there are three types of human capital:

– cognitive skills, which refer to a person’s ability to think abstractly and solve problems;
– non-cognitive skills, which refer to a person’s motivation, work ethic and social skills;
– technical skills, which refer to a person’s ability to use specific tools and equipment.

Becker extended this idea by arguing that human capital is not only important for economic growth but also for individuals’ earnings. He showed that people with more education earn more than those with less education.

The idea of education as a human capital is relevant to the novel "Three Cups of Tea" in two ways. First, it is clear that Mortenson’s work has had a positive impact on the economic development of Pakistan and Afghanistan. In particular, his work has helped to increase the productive capacity of the people in these countries by providing them with access to education. Second, it is also clear that Mortenson’s work has had a positive impact on the earnings of individual Afghans and Pakistanis. For example, Jawad Faizi, an Afghan student who helps Mortenson to build a school in Nuristan, is able to get a job as a teacher because of the education he has received.

3. 2 Education in Times of Conflict: The Case of Afghanistan

Another key idea discussed in the novel is education in times of conflict. This issue is relevant to Afghanistan, where Mortenson has built over one hundred schools for girls.

The importance of education in times of conflict has been emphasized by a number of theorists, including Samuel Huntington and Rolando Franco. Huntington argued that education is important for peace because it helps to reduce the incidence of violence by teaching people to resolve their differences peacefully. Franco argued that education is important for peace because it helps to reduce poverty and inequality, which are two important drivers of conflict.

The importance of education in times of conflict is also underscored by the fact that Mortenson’s work has been supported by the US military. Colonel Brian Eggleston, an American military officer who helps Mortenson to build a school in Zabul Province, says that "it’s hard to shoot someone when you’re building a school with them" (p. 304). Eggleston’s statement highlights the fact that education can help to create trust and understanding between people from different groups, which can in turn help to reduce conflict.

3. 3 Building Schools and Teachers’ Houses: Does It Work in Developing Countries?

A final key issue discussed in the novel is the building of schools and teachers’ houses in developing countries. This issue is relevant to Mortenson’s work in Pakistan and Afghanistan, where he has built over one hundred schools for girls.

The efficacy of building schools and teachers’ houses in developing countries has been contested by a number of theorists, including liberation theorists and Freire. Liberation theorists, such as Paulo Freire, argue that schools and teachers’ houses built in developing countries often serve the interests of the ruling elites rather than the interests of the people they are supposed to benefit. For example, they argue that schools built in developing countries often teach a curriculum that is designed to perpetuate the status quo rather than to promote social change.

In contrast, modernization theorists, such as David McClelland, argue that schools and teachers’ houses can play an important role in promoting economic development in developing countries. McClelland argues that schools and teachers’ houses help to increase the productive capacity of the people in developing countries by providing them with access to education.

It is clear from the novel "Three Cups of Tea" that Mortenson’s work has had a positive impact on the economic development of Pakistan and Afghanistan. In particular, his work has helped to increase the productive capacity of the people in these countries by providing them with access to education. This suggests that, contrary to what liberation theorists might argue, schools and teachers’ houses can play an important role in promoting economic development in developing countries.

4. Conclusion

In conclusion, the novel "Three Cups of Tea" provides a valuable insight into the role of education in promoting economic development in developing countries. The novel highlights the importance of education as a human capital, as well as the importance of education in times of conflict. It also shows that schools and teachers’ houses can play an important role in promoting economic development in developing countries.

FAQ

The author's purpose for writing this novel is to educate the reader about different cultures and their education systems.

The story compares and contrasts education in different cultures by looking at the differences in how each culture values education.

Some of the challenges faced by educators in developing countries include a lack of resources, limited access to technology, and language barriers.

International and comparative education can help improve global understanding and cooperation by providing a way for people from different cultures to learn about each other's educational systems and values.

Some potential solutions to the problems faced by educators in developing countries include increasing international aid, improving access to technology, and increasing teacher training.

Cite this assignment

Free Essay Samples (October 2, 2022) The Role of Education in Economic Development: A Case Study of Greg Mortenson’s Work in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Retrieved from https://essayholic.com/the-role-of-education-in-economic-development-a-case-study-of-greg-mortensons-work-in-pakistan-and-afghanistan/.
"The Role of Education in Economic Development: A Case Study of Greg Mortenson’s Work in Pakistan and Afghanistan." Free Essay Samples - October 2, 2022, https://essayholic.com/the-role-of-education-in-economic-development-a-case-study-of-greg-mortensons-work-in-pakistan-and-afghanistan/
Free Essay Samples April 3, 2022 The Role of Education in Economic Development: A Case Study of Greg Mortenson’s Work in Pakistan and Afghanistan., viewed October 2, 2022,<https://essayholic.com/the-role-of-education-in-economic-development-a-case-study-of-greg-mortensons-work-in-pakistan-and-afghanistan/>
Free Essay Samples - The Role of Education in Economic Development: A Case Study of Greg Mortenson’s Work in Pakistan and Afghanistan. [Internet]. [Accessed October 2, 2022]. Available from: https://essayholic.com/the-role-of-education-in-economic-development-a-case-study-of-greg-mortensons-work-in-pakistan-and-afghanistan/
"The Role of Education in Economic Development: A Case Study of Greg Mortenson’s Work in Pakistan and Afghanistan." Free Essay Samples - Accessed October 2, 2022. https://essayholic.com/the-role-of-education-in-economic-development-a-case-study-of-greg-mortensons-work-in-pakistan-and-afghanistan/
"The Role of Education in Economic Development: A Case Study of Greg Mortenson’s Work in Pakistan and Afghanistan." Free Essay Samples [Online]. Available: https://essayholic.com/the-role-of-education-in-economic-development-a-case-study-of-greg-mortensons-work-in-pakistan-and-afghanistan/. [Accessed: October 2, 2022]

More Related papers

Top