Blue Eyes Brown Eyes Experiment

To teach her class what it felt like to be victims of discrimination
Elliot told her class the following

1. Blue – eyed children are smarter than those with brown eyes.
2. Blue – eyed children are the best people in the room.
3. Brown – eyed children cannot play with blue – eyed children in the playground because they

are not as good.
4. Brown – eyed children cannot use the water fountain

The reaction of the children to these statements was immediate. The blue eyed children were
delighted, arrogant and became vicious. The brown eyed children were angry, saddened and
confused and withdrawn. Fights broke out in the play ground between children who had been
best friends the day before. The following day, Elliot reversed the experiment and the brown eyed
children behaved in the same arrogant way that the blue eyed children behaved the previous day.
Similarly the blue eyed children became withdrawn and sad.
Elliot believed that, by getting the children to experience first-hand what it felt like to the victims of
prejudice and discrimination, these children would grow up being more tolerant towards others.