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Interactive lecture 'Brown Eyes Blue Eyes'

In this interactive lecture, people with brown eyes are given preferential treatment and are regarded as the leaders, and people with blue eyes are treated as the minority group. By learning through experience, switching perspectives and confrontation, you will become aware of the mechanisms that sustain discrimination and your own role in them.

Target group
Non-academic staff
Seyda Buurman-Kutsal


The Brown Eyes, Blue Eyes lecture is an experiment in discrimination. The experiment will help participants to understand their own perspectives of influence and power within democratic systems and to reflect on these perspectives. They will then initiate a dialogue based on these insights. In the microcosm that arises during the course of the experiment, participants will have the opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of the systemic nature of oppression and the impact it has on our relationships with others and ourselves. Participants will discuss the perspective of courage in a changing political world, and will experience it on an emotional level.

Workload and number of participants

  • Two-hour interactive lecture for 30 to 50 participants.

  • Or: tailor-made training course for 12 participants (sessions of three-to-four hours).

The training programmes offered by the Diversity Office are geared towards fostering good conduct and encouraging dialogue and constructive communication within teams and units and between colleagues with similar functions. Any managers, chairs or directors interested in participating in these programmes should send an email to diversitytraining@bb.leidenuniv.nl to discuss the possibilities. Information about the costs is available upon request. The training programmes are scheduled to take place at a time that is most convenient for the unit.

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