Recent generations of students and teachers face a very serious problem: the education explosion, parallel to the demographic increase of the population. School classrooms around the world present a common spectacle: student overcrowding, teacher shortages and insufficient time to cover all vocational training subjects.

The progressive increase in the population brings with it impersonality, indifference to what is foreign — that is, “taking care of your own business and not getting involved in the affairs of others” — a situation that leads us to interact with a small group of people as if the rest of the world did not exist. When we view this phenomenon in the context of a school environment we see that along with an increase in members there are also divisions and desires to return to “the old days.”

Similar situations are observed in political parties, scientific organisations and even in cities. A growing institution goes through its crises. Some of these crises are fatal to the institution and the individuals who belong to it.

Researchers from the most diverse disciplines say that the confinement of students in classrooms with insufficient physical space provokes aggressive reactions that are often directed against the institution’s infrastructure.

Aggressive reactions such as: destruction of important works of art in some universities, use of their walls as spaces for partisan propaganda, destruction of valuable teaching material, theft of objects and books. In all, significant damage to various elements that make up the heritage of these educational institutions.

When researchers interviewed students on the subject they said with convincing seriousness: “We are in an unjust society, where a form of emotional relief is to unleash our accumulated tension and aggression. This will continue to happen until there is a more just society ”.

Given all this, I wonder why they don’t rid themselves of their aggression by creating a cultural centre for the university — what a good thing that would be, or doing sports, or simply dedicating themselves to study, which is the least of it. They waste their time and drag others into wasting it too. There is a great rush to graduate, but they make their destinations a space of time without goals or interests.

Is what afflicts our youth a great laziness? The education explosion can’t be used as an excuse for the malicious demonstrations of Venezuelan students, as all students in the world experience the same tensions. Here it seems as though no one can curb their destructive impulses.

Conclusion: overpopulation brings as a consequence, among other things, a great education deficit. As the population is forecast to increase, education will be even poorer than it is today.

Some advocate the demonetisation of society and broader teaching methods as a solution. Proposals for open universities, education by correspondence — these initiatives attempt to cover some of the education deficit.

Regarding the misdirected venting of aggression, students — the victims of an unjust society — must be educated to be more civilised and take proper advantage of their excess energy in ways more productive for themselves — and for the unjust society they are not on course to change.

Psychiatrist & Writer — Writing and meditating at the intersection of psychiatry, philosophy, Buddhism and the arts. More information at www.lidaprypchan.com