Pictures Essay, Research Paper


The main conflict in the text is about having different religions. It’s about

how a little girl is having problems about understanding why she can’t paint

religious persons with dark skin. At school the teacher says that Amina can take

the picture to show her mom. Amina doesn’t understand why it can’t hang on the

wall together with the other childrens’. But the teacher gives another excuse

and Amina “surrenders”, and takes the picture home. But as her mother sees the

picture she tears it apart, and tells Amina to never say anything to Amina’s

father and she tells Amina explicitly not to draw anymore pictures of the

Prophet of Nazareth. It is obvious that Amina’s mother is scared of how the

father will react if he sees that her daughter has painted people from the Bible.

Amina and her family are muslims, that’s why her mother can’t accept the drawing

Amina brings home. The reason why she doesn’t want the father to know is that

he’s the dominant one in the family. Maybe the mother is scared that he will

punish Amina, or maybe even the mother, for not bringing up her daughter

properly. Then Amina’s mother teaches her to draw patterns from the Koran. Amina

likes to draw the patterns and she is no more confused. Next day at school,

they’re all going to draw nice Christmas cards. Amina draws the patterns that

her mother has just taught her. The teacher tells her to draw people instead,

and she throws away the Christmas card with patterns on it. Amina refuses to

draw people, and reminds the teacher of what she’d told Amina the other day. The

teacher tries to behave nice and convinces Amina that she will put Amina’s

picture next to the others’. During the two discussions the teacher and Amina

are having, the teacher is having a hard time justifying what she is actually

doing. She gives no particular reason for telling Amina to take home the picture.

Just as well as she gives no explanation for, why Amina can’t draw patterns from

the Koran. Instead she tries to flatter Amina by telling her that she is good at

painting. Even more confused, Amina draws people instead. At school she’s told

to draw people from the Christian Bible and at home she’s told that’s wrong. At

home her mom tells her to draw patterns from the Muslim Koran, but when she

comes to school she is told to draw people, – no wonder she is confused! The

ending is from the parents’ point of view very contradictive ( I assume that the

father has the same opinion as the mother). They’re in the shop selling things

for Christmas although they’re Muslims. At the same time they forbid their

daughter to paint things or people that have anything to do with Christmas.

Meanwhile Amina’s sitting in her room, trying to figure out why she had to throw

the fine drawing of the Holy Family away.

The other day, my daughter brought home a drawing she had made. It was a picture

of Jesus. Now, everybody in this town know that I am definetely not a Christian.

Nor is my daughter. That’s why I don’t understand that she has to draw these

drawings at school. The local schools ought to have a little more respect for

foreign culture and religion. I intend to bring up my daughter like girls are

brought up in our culture. We don’t have to bring her up like English children

just because we live in England. It is about time that schools took care that

all the children were treated so that it wouldn’t interfere with their culture

and belief. The children become confused and don’t know what to believe. The

things they’re taught in school or the things they’re taught at home. Since the

number of foreign children are increasing I suggest that religion-classes are

divided into two or three, – depending on the number of different religions. In

that way the child would be much less confused.

Yours Mr. Iqbal


More than 3000 schools all over the country have been invited to join a

competition with the Earthworms for the Rainforest. The classes are going to

try to get earthworms to convert the most garbage to compost, and the winner of

The Golden Earthworm is rewarded with a trip up the Amazonas with a visit to the

original inhabitants of the rainforest. A few days after this note was written

in the paper, one could read the following object from an expert. It is the

micro-organisms of the earth which produces compost, not the earthworms, and one

cannot make the earth fertile by just adding earthworms. They simply die if

there’s not enough food for them.

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