The reference to the history of a country or a region influences the self-perception as a citizen and the belonging to a society. There is a diversity of taking history into consideration; and it varies not only within societies, but also in different European countries. What is remembered? How is it remembered? What is more a taboo? What can we learn from this about the culture and society of a country?
In this project, employees of a museum in Finland, a university in Poland and educational associations in France, Spain and Berlin cooperate to acquire methods of historical, intercultural and democratic education in exchange for good practice. At the same time, they intend gaining a deeper understanding of the historical issues and their influence on the perception of culture and society in the project partner’s countries.
It is not intended to ‘create’ a European history. The project’s objectives are: a) to address questions that are controversially debated and / or neglected in public memory; b) to counteract right-wing extremism and populism and the associated renationalisation of historical images by discussing reciprocal effects between European countries’ histories, c) to apply educational methods that enable peaceful exchanges on sensitive issues; d) to promote the networking of actors in historical-political education in Europe.
«The future is decided in the dispute over the past. »(Wolf Biermann) The exchange about history and its influence today is also an exercise in democratic values: critical thinking and the distinction between history politics and culture of remembrance, desire to knowledge, ambiguity and frustration tolerance as well as a kind of reflection which does not avoid controversies but in a cultivated manner.
The project is aimed at adult educators (employed, volunteers) who work primarily with the so-called disadvantaged people and with those with migration background. As project’s result, the consortium produces teaching material to be applied in adult and citizenship education.
A ‘European spirit’, an identification with the continent can only grow if the political Europe is accepted by its citizens. The power of past may be an eye-opener towards the future of Europe and the ideas that its citizens bring in.
Picture: Wikipedia, Russian and German soldiers celebrating the end of the war at the east front (1918)