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Sam Cowen: Book on Parktown Boys abuse uncovers horror caused by code of silence

2 August 2020 12:18 PM
Tags:
Book
Author
Collan Rex
Brutal School Ties
Sam Cowen
Parktown Boys abuse

Broadcaster and author Sam Cowen says her book 'Brutal School Ties' is a story about the devastating impact of a code of silence.

Cowen's book uncovers the culture of violence and initiation, shrouded in a code of silence, at Parktown Boys High School.

The book comes after the school's former water polo coach Collan Rex was found guilty of 144 charges of sexual assault and 14 of assault in September 2018.

He was sentenced to 23 years in prison.

Cowen's book, Brutal School Ties: The Parktown Boys Tragedy, gives voice to all the lives impacted by the abuse.

She speaks to the victims, the parents, the teachers, the matron, and Rex, the abuser.

Cowen says the book illustrates the cycle of abuse that continues when people stay silent and how society is still grappling with ideas of masculinity.

The more I wrote, interviewed, and listened, the more I realised that there were only victims in this, some far more badly treated than others.

Sam Cowen, Author - Brutal School Ties: The Parktown Boys Tragedy

Had Collan Rex not been molested, the question is always, would he have done this... without having been brought up like this himself?

Sam Cowen, Author - Brutal School Ties: The Parktown Boys Tragedy

Not all abused people become abusers, but there's an enormous amount of evidence that a lot of abusers have been abused.

Sam Cowen, Author - Brutal School Ties: The Parktown Boys Tragedy

It's a story about what happens when things that have gone wrong are allowed to continue to go wrong under a code of silence.

Sam Cowen, Author - Brutal School Ties: The Parktown Boys Tragedy

The code of silence is not official... it's an understood rule. Once you unpack what that can do and what that allows, that's the true horror - far more so than the molestation itself.

Sam Cowen, Author - Brutal School Ties: The Parktown Boys Tragedy

Listen to Sam Cowen in conversation with Sara-Jayne King:

Listen to Sam Cowen in conversation with Pippa Hudson:


2 August 2020 12:18 PM
Tags:
Book
Author
Collan Rex
Brutal School Ties
Sam Cowen
Parktown Boys abuse

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