i watched this program today 10-13-04 at a diversity meeting for where i work. i have NEVER been so impacted by something as i was with this. what a wonderful teacher! every child should have the chance to be educated by such a woman. to see the way the children turned on each other, trated people who the day before were their friends, the sad, broken looks in their little faces literally made me cry! how easy it was to turn them against someone was eyeopening! i would encourage eveyone to use this as a wonderful life teaching skill. I found the CLASS DIVIDED show quite interesting and very compelling.
However, I must say that I found it more of an example of OPPRESSION and not discrimination. Minority and race issues are far more complex and subtle than could be expressed in the exercise. There are so many components as part of the minority American experience that it may be unfeasible to truly expect to convey this to White America, however, it should be noted that much of the discrimination that minorites experience are not overt and not expressed as were shown in the classroom though, to be fair, in 1968 it very likely was. For example, being a non-oppressed minority is far different than being an oppressed HALF.
If the experiment had been to have 1 blue-eyed out of a class of 20 brown eyes then we might have a small idea what minority expereince is like. One last item: Minority experience and race-relations does not mean Black-White. This simplification occurs quite often and the other minorities often get only slight mention or as often with Asians or Native Americans ignored entirely. I think that material could be used in today’s classrooms with the inclusion of discrimination based on age and physical and mental infirmaties too. Thank you for the supurb presentation.