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John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation Lecture: Teaching History in Post-Conflict Societies: The Case of the Balkans

Event Type
Lecture
Topics
academic, history of the mediterranean, modern greek culture
Sponsor
Program in Modern Greek Studies; John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation; European Union Center
Location
Room 1080 (Lucy Ellis Lounge), Foreign Languages Building, 707 South Mathews Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801
Date
Oct 11, 2017   3:00 pm  
Speaker
Professor Christina Koulouri, Panteion University of Political and Social Sciences (Athens, Greece), Visiting Research Fellow at Stanley J. Seeger '52 Center for Hellenic Studies, Princeton University
Cost
Cost Free
Contact
Dr. Stefanos Katsikas (Director, Program in Modern Greek Studies)
E-Mail
skatsika@illinois.edu
Phone
217-300-7188
Views
6
Originating Calendar
Modern Greek Studies Events

In post-communist Balkans and especially in the states which emerged after the disintegration of Yugoslavia, educational reform was designed as one of the necessary preconditions for democratization and sustainable peace. In a region ‘suspicious’ of nationalism, the revision of history teaching was also embodied in the reconciliation process and has been promoted through bilateral, multilateral/regional and international projects. The underlying assumption behind this activity was that a change in the teaching methods of history might have a long-term effect on the way neighbouring peoples see one another. On the other hand, the ‘memory boom’ – a global phenomenon of the last decades- generated fierce disputes and even violent confrontations related to the traumatic historical experiences of the recent past. The victims have claimed the ‘duty to remember’ as part of their identity, also aiming at a moral recompense via history. What is the role of education in post-conflict societies? Can history teaching function as part of a major project of peace education? Should controversial and sensitive issues be silenced or taught? How can traumatic memories be transformed into a history lesson? These questions are going to be discussed by using the example of Balkan countries after the 1990s.

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