You must check this out, or the terrorists have already won:
Clearly, this is a really well done parody of the genre–perhaps unsurprisingly, I was always a fan of the four “Schoolhouse Rock” cartoons that referred to early American history–No More Kings, The Shot Heard ‘Round the World, The Preamble, and Elbow Room. Of course, I’m appalled by the incredible whiteness of their points of view, but I admire them still today for their engaging animation and their wonderful songs, which integrate storytelling with traditional American musical forms and references. I still know the songs and (most) of the words and can sing along–and the truth is that I can’t either read or recite the preamble to the U.S. Constitution without the jingle ringing in my head…(but I try not to sing along when teaching the Constitution to my students!) I think these history cartoons were much better done than most of the “Schoolhouse Rock” cartoons on words or numbers–with the exception of Interjections, My Hero Zero, and Interplanet Janet perhaps. In my opinion, Sufferin’ Till Suffrage is a disappointment, perhaps because there’s no clear, short story to tell to explain American feminism or the suffrage movement. (This is a problem in general when writing about women’s and gender history, isn’t it?) The music is great, though.
“Pirates and Emperors” is a Schoohouse Rock you never saw when you were growing up–but your students and kids should watch.
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