A Class Divided

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  • After the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., an elementary school teacher in a small Iowa town decided to introduce ideas about racism and discrimination to her all-white class. This classic Frontline episode recounts Jane Elliott's bold experiment and its provocative approach-awarding special privileges to her blue-eyed students while discriminating against those whose eyes were brown. The program tracks down Mrs. Elliott's former third-graders to learn what effect those early lessons about ignorance and injustice had on their lives.


  • Films on Demand is distributed by Films Media Group for Films for the Humanities & Sciences, Cambridge Educational, Meridian Education, and Shopware.
  • Encoded with permission for digital streaming by Films Media Group on October 16, 2009.
  • System requirements: FOD playback platform.
  • Mode of access: Internet.
  • Closed-captioned.


  • Introduction to a Controversial Experiment (1:09) -- Jane Elliott's Eye Color Experiment (6:07) -- Discrimination Quickly Takes Hold (2:35) -- Turning the Tables in the Eye Color Experiment (4:31) -- Lessons of the Eye Color Experiment (3:06) -- Catalyst for the Eye Color Experiment (2:14) -- Reflection on Eye Color Experiment (2:42) -- Lasting Effects of the Eye Color Experiment (4:09) -- Explaining Higher Test Scores (1:03) -- Using the Eye Color Experiment Documentary for Race Relations (2:35) -- Conducting the Experiment on Prison Employees (2:03) -- Creating Conflict Between Two Groups (4:36) -- Effects of Inferior Labeling (2:30) -- Tensions Mount in the Workshop (3:23) -- Defensiveness in the Eye Color Experiment (2:37) -- Analyzing the Eye Color Experiment (4:32) -- Jane Elliott's Conclusion (2:16)
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