Significant or safe? two cases of instructional uses of history feature films

Scott Alan Metzger, Yonghee Suh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


The popularity of VHS and DVD over the past two decades has greatly expanded the influence of history movies, watched by millions of adolescents in homes and classrooms. This paper examines two secondary U.S. history teachers' instructional uses of history motion pictures in their classrooms. Ray used The Patriot (2000) to teach history as stories about the past created by people using imagination and evidence. Marie used Roots (1977) to interweave African American history as a thematic thread throughout her curriculum for her almost entirely White student population. By analyzing the cases of these two teachers, we investigate how history feature films function as instructional tools and illustrate the ways in which movies are both powerful and dangerous in the classroom.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)88-109
Number of pages22
JournalTheory and Research in Social Education
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science


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