The True Story of the Boy They Couldn't Break
A shocking and frank account of the abuse and cruelty faced by one Irish boy under the protection of the Christian Brothers.
Sent to an Industrial School in Dublin at the age of seven, Patrick Touher was forced into a tough regime of education and training, prayer and punishment, strict discipline and fearful nights. No allowances were made for emotion, sentiment or boyhood worries, and anyone who disturbed the routine was severely punished. Artane demanded absolute obedience, absolute submission; Patrick's was an education in cruelty and fear.
Patrick Touher spent eight long years in Artane Industrial School. Run by the Christian Brothers, the school has become synonymous with the widespread abuse of children in Ireland in the 1940s and 1950s which is currently the subject of an official inquiry.
This is the inside story of a childhood lived in the most horrific of circumstances. A moving and powerful true account, Fear of the Collar bears testament to the courage and determination of the children that society forgot.
“Touher's story powerfully discloses the pain of being without secure moorings in life ... his account of the regime of the Irish Christian Brothers is an important one”
“It is a book of survival, of hardship, but also of friendships and solidarity despite the oppressive regime all the Artane Boys suffered in a society not willing or able to see its own faults”
“A story ... which must be neither hidden nor forgotten”
“Gripping in its honest and no-holds-barred account of one boy's sometimes tortuous trek through the grey underworld of Dublin's industrial school life during the 1950s”