Fact: All blue-eyed people are LAZY, DUMB, and dishonest.

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Have you ever felt discriminated against? Imagine being totally immersed in an inescapable environment in which you were treated as inferior to others whom you may have once thought your equals.


Jane Elliott's blue eyes-brown eyes demonstration with her 3rd grade class was something that I truly have internalized and feel that I learned from and will always remember. (chapter 13 of Lilienfeld)

For those that don't know, Jane Elliott created a microcosm of discrimination in society in her classroom in 1969 (and several times since) by separating her students by eye color, favoring one group over the other. It demonstrated the negative interpersonal effects of discrimination, and gave kids a real look into discrimination.


The results were the best: the students in the unfavored group performed significantly worse, and the results were reversed when the same students were put in the favored group the following day.

As a future teacher, this is something I know I can apply and will be important for me to remember. I hope to always be aware and conscious of in-groups, out-groups, and the effects of discrimination.


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This is an interesting situation at hand. I wonder if this test will still pass the review boards today to be done in a public classroom. Being discriminated against seems to take some harsh psychological tolls on humans as a species. Since we are a very social group the negative effects can be seen tremendously. Hopefully the scores will all go up again in all classrooms with no discrimination!

I find this very true. Anytime I have been placed in the group that has whom I deem as "smarter" people I feel like I try harder and end u getting a better grade. This is true in sports as well. When I have been placed on the A team opposed to the B team, I have seen my athletic ability increase. I think it is because I reach my true potential. No one wants to be the weak link. When the competition increases it drives an individual to try harder.

It's interesting that people's abilities changed simply because of the perceived status of their group. It shows that we have to be mindful of the effects our mentalities have on reality. For example, if we place some people in a discriminated group, then observe their inferior abilities, then use that as justification for further discrimination, we've just created a self-perpetuating stereotype that is very hard to work against. It's even stronger because it looks like it's based on evidence, thus may not be seen as a false stereotype, but a true one, thus eliminating the sense of needing to stop the stereotype.

This is an interesting concept that goes to show how performance can be determined by group status and comparison. If a situation creates inequality across a group of people, then the people who are thought less of take on a mentality that results in them displaying reasons for being below others. I think a good example of this can be seen by comparing certain sets of siblings. If one sibling is highly achieved and sets the bar high for his siblings, then his siblings may sit in their shadow and never live up to the unspoken expectations that they feel they have to fight to meet.

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This page contains a single entry by Shawna Zielinski published on May 6, 2012 12:28 AM.

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