By using the pilgrimage to Washington, D.C. as defining moment in making a citizen, television as a national hegemonic media both challenges the “infantile citizen” but also reinforces the ideal of the nation.


  1. How does have past narratives about the pilgrimage to Washington, D.C. reinforced and challenged the reverence for American democracy?
  2. How does Lisa Simpson win a contest to travel to Washington, D.C.?
  3. How does the discovery of Rep. Bob Arnold’s corruption shatter her illusions of the strength of “The Roots of Democracy?”
  4. Can we think about the metaphors that she uses in both her original essay and her critical one that caused a ruckus? Roots, trees, saplings? Swampland and stench?
  5. How does the sequence after “a little girl has lost faith in democracy” help restore her faith in “the system?” How does it not restore our own faith in the system?