The first semester of my U.S. History class is rapidly coming to an end. We just finished the Civil War and Reconstruction unit. Because the unit ended yesterday with their assessment, and because Thanksgiving break starts Friday, I felt like this was a good time to sneak in the infamous movie Glory. Having taught at other schools before coming to Collins Hill I have seen numerous procedures for getting supplemental materials approved for classes. So I was not entirely surprised when I checked out Glory this morning and saw on the cover of the VHS (yes I know) case a sticker that said, “Edited For Educational Uses.”
From what I can tell, “Edited For Educational Uses” implies that some bloody war scenes have been cut as well as foul language. Although I understand the implications of showing movies to young students and that parents should have a right to dictate what their child watches, I cannot help but feel that editing films such as this are counterproductive to what one can learn from the movie. For example, part of what is edited out of Glory, are some the uses of the word “nigger,” as well as certain vulgar mud white soldiers sling at their black counterparts. To me, editing out this material is the same as editing The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. So tell me, what do you think about editing films for educational purposes?