Saturday, May 14, 2011

"The Lesson Plan"

I know nothing about the Newport Beach Film Festival or of Libertas Film Magazine, but I found the experiment this documentary recalls intriguing. It fits both with my Tribes discussions and the recent MWBOT series.
Ron Jones, a puzzling mixture of grandiosity and naïveté, claims he intended this to be only a one- or two-day experiment, but it went on for at least a week. Other students remember a longer or shorter period (the incident was not well documented at the time). He admits he was so energized with the power and passion of his movement that he upped the ante each day, introducing new methods of mind control. On day 5, when he finally exposed the movement as a lesson meant to teach the students that they were no better or worse than the Germans, the young students fell apart in a fog of betrayal and emotional panic. The tearful interviews of his students 40 years later testify to the damage wreaked by the experience.
Trailer at the link.

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