A Class Divided Documentary Analysis

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The documentary titled, “ A Class Divided” introduces us to the experiment made in an elementary school in Iowa by the schoolteacher named Jane Elliot. The documentary begins with Mrs. Elliot reuniting with the students who she did this experiment with the first time. The students are much older now, and they willingly want to watch the experiment that they were part of when they were elementary kids. The experiment was done days after the death of Martin Luther King Jr. Mrs. Elliot has always thought about doing the eye color experiment, but she was never sure of when to do it. She asked her third grade student if it would be interesting to see what would happen if they were judged by their eye color. The students seemed amused, so Mrs. Elliott announced that since she was blue-eyed, the blue-eyed people are on top for…show more content…
The first and most important display of diversity is when Mrs. Elliot splits up the class by eye color. The point of this was to teach students how little sense is made from treating someone based on an aspect of their appearance. A clear example of social justice in the film is shown shortly after the class is divided, when the blue eyed children were given extra recess time while the brown eyed students didn’t get any recess time at all. There was no clear reason why one group was seen as superior and given more privilege aside from the children’s’ eye color; this is an issue that is still seen often today. The whole documentary is about a social experiment involving discrimination. It is seen in both cases with third graders in the first half of the film, and again with a room full of adults. The classes were broken up followed by Mrs. Elliot picking on the lesser of the two groups. She continued doing so, so the groups would think more critically about the aspects of discrimination and prejudice and how these issues pertain to their own
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