Chapter 1

A small boy in rags gets up from the table and, with enormous trepidation, he approaches the intimidating figure looming over the cauldron of gruel. Using every ounce of courage he says, with trembling anxiety, ‘Please, sir, I want some more’.

This well-known scene from Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist is one of the most memorable moments in English literature and its message is loud and clear: speak your mind, particularly to one hierarchically above you (parent, employer, bank manager, etc.) and you risk being publicly humiliated and facing dire consequences. It can feel like a risk that may not pay off, and that is a huge thing indeed. The trepidation ...

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