The Children's Story

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The Children's Story was a novella by James Clavell, author of the Shogun series of books. It was first published in 1981 and later made into a movie. All action takes place in a public school classroom after the United States has been conquered by a nameless foreign power. The teacher is replaced with someone appointed by the new rulers. In the course of one morning, the teacher easily brainwashes the children into accepting the new order of things, as children are open to new ideas and simple bribery.

Clavell, a naturalized American citizen, wrote the story in response to an incident with his young daughter. He realized her teacher had taught her to recite the Pledge of Allegiance, even though she had no idea what most of the words meant. Clavell authored The Children's Story as a caution against runaway displays of patriotism and blind obedience to the government.

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