I is for Inhumanity

All my thought-of posts are going for a toss. Just finished John Boyne’s The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas and immediately these lines rose in my mind:

Man’s Inhumanity to man
Makes countless thousands mourn!

These lines occur in Robert Burns’ poem Man was Made to Mourn: A Dirge. A poem published in 1784.

To me the best counter to this is one provided by South African writer and activist Alan Paton:

There is only one way in which one can endure man’s inhumanity to man and that is to try, in one’s own life, to exemplify man’s humanity to man.


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Which particular instance of inhumanity – in literature or history – can you not get out of your mind? Do share.

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Entry for letter I

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