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Jane Elliott      

Anti-Racism Activist, Educator, Feminist & LGBT Activist

Jane Elliott is an anti-racism activist, educator, feminist, and LGBTQ activist. She is known for her "Blue eyes–Brown eyes" exercise.

She first conducted her famous exercise for her class on April 5, 1968, the day after Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated. When her local newspaper published compositions that the children had written about the experience, the reactions (both positive and negative) formed the basis for her career as a public speaker against discrimination.

Elliott's classroom exercise was filmed the third time she held it with her 1970 third-graders to become the documentary The Eye of the Storm. This in turn inspired a retrospective that reunited the 1970 class members with their teacher 15 years later in A Class Divided.

After leaving her school, Elliott became a diversity educator full-time. She still holds the exercise and gives lectures about its effects all over the U.S. and in several locations overseas. She has conducted the exercise with college students, as seen in the 2001 documentary The Angry Eye.

Speech Topics

Power, Perception, and Prejudice

A one-hour presentation during which Ms. Elliott uses audience members and visual aids to help us to recognize, identify, and appreciate the differences on which power is assigned, and some of the ways in which we are conditioned to develop some of our perceptions.

Ms. Elliott has successfully delivered these presentations to a wide variety of audiences throughout the world and is available to present these moving lectures before your group or organization.

The Anatomy of Prejudice

A three-hour presentation during which Ms. Jane Elliott, the adaptor of the Blue Eyes/Brown Eyes Exercise in teaching about the anatomy of prejudice and the subject of the Peabody Award-winning film, "The Eye of the Storm," introduces and discusses that film and 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.

Those attending the presentation will be encouraged to discuss the issues raised as they relate to their own workplace. They will also be encouraged to discuss the materials presented on the handouts which are designed to help them to identify their own racist statements, behaviors, and attitudes. Participants will receive a list of suggested activities which, if implemented, can help them to decrease the amount of racism in their environment and a list of books which, if read, can provide added insights to the problems of the -isms with which we are all confronted.


Jane Elliott Rethinking Race
Souncloud link to radio interview
Long Time Anti-Racism Educator Jane Elliott To Speak In Springfield
Jane Elliott was a teacher in Riceville, Iowa in the late sixties. She says she was disturbed by the way much of white America ...

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