Sunday, 13 May 2012

The ‘session six’

Has anyone ever read ‘The Discipline Archive’ by Garrick Espieside? 

For those who haven’t, but are scholars of corporal punishment history, then please may I recommend it? It’s available on Amazon.

It’s a fascinating account of a revolutionary method of disciplinary procedures in a further educational establishment some 50 years ago.

The synopsis, without spoiling the story, is that an establishment pioneers an experimental method of standardising the application of corporal punishment in a fair, but severe way.

It achieved this by employing two professional ‘assistants’ who’s sole job it is to administer corporal punishment in a controlled environment under a very stringent set of regulations.

The story is told through a series of interviews with the assistants and students and, though entirely fictional, is so well thought out and written that it could be entirely plausible and offers an interesting look how corporal punishment could and, some might say, should have continued.

The most fascinating idea was that of a ‘session six,’ which meant for every punishment slip that prescribed, say six strokes or 12 strokes, another six would be added.

So six strokes meant 12, 12 strokes meant 18. This was important because the maximum number of strokes per session was 18. With demerits a student easily could earn 18 strokes, which would mean at least two separate visits to the punishment facility for the cane: 12 plus a session six, plus the other original six, plus another session six. So instead of 18 strokes, the punishment would become 30.

Can you imagine going to the office with your slip saying 18 strokes to be told you’d be not only getting 12 more - but you’d have to come back a second time to complete the punishment?

Applying that to my weekly maintenance session it would mean three daily sessions of 12, each with a session six, making it 54 strokes in total. I don’t think I’ll be suggesting that to Mistress.

But, as I say, the book is a fascinating insight into an alternative corporal punishment regime and well worth a look.


  1. I have not read the book but i will tae a look at it.
    The extra 6 regime sounds a bit tough.

  2. The book sounds very interesting. But, alas, Amazon shows it out of print and out of stock.