After Marge forces everyone to hand in their electronics, the family takes a trip to a book store. There, Bart discovers that he can use the book The Art of War to manipulate Homer into allowing him to go to a Tunnelcraft convention. Homer reads the book to in turn manipulate Bart by acting like Ned Flanders.
Meanwhile, Marge purchases an old book that used to be a favorite of hers in hopes of reading it to Lisa, but realizes it is culturally offensive. Marge decides to edit the story in order to lessen the offensive stereotypes and clichés, but after she reads it to Lisa, the two agree that it has lost meaning. Lisa decides to bring Marge to Springfield University, where she is told that modern critics read the book as a subversive satire of conformity. However, Marge is not entirely convinced, and the critics admit that they don't completely believe it either.