The aim of the 9th European Remembrance Symposium is to discuss the role of history and memory in creating contemporary European identity. During this year’s event, special attention will be given to the mission, programme and best practices of institutions dealing with 20th-century European history.
The diversity of European memory is a result of, among others, a long period marked by border changes and conflicts, dictatorships and acts of terror. Over the last decades, historical debates and memory politics in Europe have been particularly challenging. Different experiences in the East and West over the course of the 20th century have shaped an ambiguous memory setting. Historical discussions regarding East-Central Europe have been difficult and complex due to the experience of two totalitarianisms driven by Communist and National Socialist ideologies. The 2021 symposium in Estonia takes place 30 years after the dissolution of the USSR and in its aftermath a number of breakthrough events in the region marking the end of the Cold War. Occupied by the Russian and German Empires, Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia on several occasions in the last century, Tallinn is an example of Europe’s complex 20th-century history which has shaped the memory and identity of the people living across the entire region.
Issues related to history and commemoration of certain events and historical figures have become increasingly prominent in academic, political and public discourse. Various institutions with a wide range of activities strive to take part in shaping public perception of history on local, regional, national and transnational levels. Amid a plethora of projects, some foster dialogue and greater understanding among Europeans, while others act as tools for promoting stereotypes or (re-)inflaming conflicts. In the light of the latest developments in the discussion about history and identity in Europe, we invite practitioners in the field of historical education to discuss their everyday challenges, including successful and failed projects. Furthermore, a special session will be devoted to short overviews (known as ‘turbo presentations’) of innovative projects dealing with European history and memory.
After months of struggling against Covid-19, there is a hope that the Symposium, which was planned for 2020, will finally take place in Tallinn in October 2021.
The main partners of this year’s edition are the Estonian Institute of Historical Memory and the Federal Institute for Culture and History of the Germans in Eastern Europe.
Venue: Tallinn Creative Hub, Cauldron Hall
Dates: 26 - 28 October 2021
Languages: English & Estonian, simultaneous translation
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