Class Divided

191. A Class Divided (William Peters, 1985)

In  1968, shortly after the assassination of Martin Luther King, a primary teacher in a small all-white Iowa town did something special, something daring. Jane Elliott took a class of third grade students and gave them a lesson in discrimination. She divided the class by eye colour and made one group superior to the other, the following day she reversed the lesson. The results were shocking. Blistering even. Jane Elliott had done something quite incredible on a very small scale.  It’s staggering to watch just how quickly the power shifts in the classroom as the children start to play up to their new roles.  I can’t recommend this film highly enough, I’d advise everyone to take the time to watch it. The producing company, PBS, have made it freely available Here.

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