As Cathleen Medwick wrote in her December, 2000
article for the Oprah Winfrey magazine "O":
"In April, 1968, Elliott
was teaching her third graders about the culture
of Native Americans. She was at home one evening
making her usual preparations, constucting a teepee
out of sheets for the children to decorate, when
she heard that Martin Luther King, Jr. had been
shot. Elliott was devastated. She realized that
she had to do something to make her students understand
what racism was. She remembered a Sioux prayer:
O Great Spirit, keep me from judging a man until
I have walked a mile in his moccasins."
The next day, one of her students
asked, "Why did they shoot that King?"
When she asked her class what they knew about
black people, the children said things like "different"
and "stupid". Then she introduced a
radical exercise in which she got the children
to discriminate against one another based on eye
color. Those with brown eyes had superior intelligence,
she said, and were no longer to play with the
blues. Within minutes, the browns began to victimize
their classmates. When Elliott reversed the rules,
the blues immediately began tormenting the browns.
Jane Elliott firmly believes, and
her exercise proved, that racism is a learned
response, that even people who think they are
not biased have internalized years of subtle -
and not so subtle - messages so that it's surprisingly
easy to bring racist tendencies to the surface.
More than 30 years later, Elliott insists that
education and awareness are the solutions to racism."
Jane lectures and works with organisations
throughout the world as she continues to challenge
racism and all oppression. During her three hour
of Prejudice Seminar she explores
with the audience the problems of racism, sexism,
ageism, homophobia and ethnocentrism and the responsibility
shared by all of us for illuminating them in and
eliminating them from ourselves and our environment.
In addition, she facilitates with Gillian Neish
day development course for Trainers to
broaden their understanding of these complex issues
and to share the most effective ways to use her
Eye of the Storm and the award winning
Opener’ filmed in the U.K. and released
in 2005. To order these videos and other titles see Details of Training Courses, DVD's and Other Training Resources.
She is the recipient of the National
Mental Health Association Award for Excellence
in Education, and of The Christine Wilson Medal
for Equality and Justice.
Her very first film - Eye of the
Storm - won an Emmy,
A Peabody and the Sidney Hillman Award.
Angry Eye has won the following
CINE Golden Eagle
New York Festivals Gold WorldMedal
Chris Award, Columbus Film Festival
Audience Favorite, Palm Springs International
‘Eye Opener’ won the Premier Award at the Learning
on Screen Awards 2004. To order see Details of Training Courses, DVD's and Other Training Resources
Eye Opener (2004 United Kingdon)
Shortened version 33 minutes Video or DVD.
Premier Award Winner - Learning on Screen
Eye Opener (2004 United
Kingdom) Extended version 50 minutes Video
Perception is Everything
(2004 United Kingdom) 28 minutes Video
Eye of the Storm (1970 USA)
25 minutes Video or DVD.
Angry Eye (2001 USA)
Shortened version 35 minutes DVD or Video.
Angry Eye (2001 USA)
Extended version 52 minutes Video.
Stolen Eye (2002 Australia)
52 minutes Video.
For detailed information
on all these titles and to order see Details of Training Courses, DVDs and Other Training Resources