In Behind the Beautiful Forevers, who is the Master?

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The Master is a character that is introduced in Chapter Eight of this excellent work of non-fiction. Abdul is now in the detention centre, and is overwhelmed by the absolute boredom that he has to endure. One day, however, he and some of the other boys are made to go to a classroom where they will be taught by a teacher known as The Master. Although Abdul is initially rather disappointed by the apearance of this man, as his title anticipates a somewhat grander individual, when The Master begins to talk, Abdul understands why he has been given this title. The Master confronts the boys with their future and also the horrors that await them if they do not work to conform and to change their lives. Note what is said about him and the effect he produces in Abdul:

Whenever the man cried, whether for the loss of his care or for the fates of Dongri inmates, the boys started crying, too. Abdul had never in his life wept as he wept now. The tears weren't the kind he'd shed after being beaten by the Sahar Police. These were tears of inspiration. He'd never encountered a man as refined and honest as this Master.

Abdul concluded that the impact of this man was that he had allowed Abdul to "become a student," and he resolves to turn his life around and to become one of the few boys who learns their lesson and does not repeat their folly, spending the rest of their days in custody.

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