Source: Falk Pingel, The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 617 This article provides an overview of modern developments in the field of history textbook revision after violent conflict. Primary topics covered include: the shift from bilateral, quasi-official historical commissions to informal groups of experts linked to non-governmental organizations (NGOs); the move from focusing on controversies of the past to those of present and unresolved conflicts; the change in the nature of conflict, from interstate to intrastate ones; and challenges facing history education reform in the aftermath of civil or internal wars. The author argues that history education initiatives face formidable challenges, especially when the sociopolitical context is not conducive to peacebuilding and reconciliation. The author concludes that developing a joint history textbook is of value because it refutes the notion—often widespread in conflict-affected and post-conflict settings—that disagreements over history are fundamentally irreconcilable.
Source: Harvey M. Weinstein, Sarah Warshauer Freedman, and Holly Hughson, Education, Citizenship and Social Justice 2, no. 1 This article discusses the role of education in the social reconstruction of post-conflict societies and seeks to present the concerns and aspirations of local people in the educational system (students, teachers, administrators and parents). Primary topics include: case studies of schools in four societies that experienced ethnic cleansing and genocide in the 1990s, that is, Croatia, Kosovo, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Rwanda; an analysis of assumptions that underlie current practice in educational peacebuilding, such as a narrow focus on emergency interventions, conflict resolution, peace education and textbook reform; and the importance of a comprehensive set of interventions that recognize the integrated nature of a society’s institutions. The authors state that there are serious societal obstacles to fostering peacebuilding-oriented educational systems, with implications for the role of external actors. They conclude by calling for a comprehensive peacebuilding approach that links education reform with broader societal changes.
Source: Elizabeth Jelin, The International Journal of Transitional Justice 1, no. 1 This article aims to explore the struggles around memories and meanings as reflected in public memorialization within the context of the transition from dictatorial regimes and state-sponsored political repression in the southern cone of South America. Primary themes include reflection on “the constant interaction between state and societal actors in the struggle for understanding and interpreting past violence and repression” as it relates to commemorative days, territorial markers, and archives; and the often rival concepts of societal memories, oblivion, remembering, and diverse kinds of social amnesia. The author argues that different interpretations of the past unfold at institutional, societal and subjective levels and concludes that memorialization is part of transitional politics and cannot be viewed independently. She also stresses that the process involves both state actors and societal forces.
Source: http://www.districtsix.co.za/frames.htmEstablished in December 1994, the museum works with the memories of the experiences of the forcible removals from the Sixth Municipal District of Cape Town and with the history of forced removals more generally. The website provides information about the museum, its exhibits and programs, and personal stories of a walk through District Six.
Source: http://www.healingthroughremembering.org/Healing Through Remembering is an extensive cross-community project made up of a range of individual members holding different political perspectives. They have come together over the last five years to focus on the issue of how to deal with the past relating to the conflict in and about Northern Ireland. In June 2002, a report was published documenting the findings of a public consultation process on how Northern Ireland, and those affected both in and out of Northern Ireland, could remember and deal with the past, and in so doing move towards healing. In total, 108 submissions were received by the project from individuals and organizations. The report highlights what those who wrote in felt would be useful methods for dealing with the past. The report also includes the six detailed recommendations made by the Project Board. They form together a collection of mechanisms and strategies to promote healing through remembering.
Source: http://www.sitesofconscience.org A worldwide network of ‘sites of conscience’ or historic sites dedicated to remembering past struggles for justice and addressing their contemporary legacies. The Coalition provides member sites with direct funding for civic engagement programs; organizes learning exchanges; and conducts strategic advocacy for sites and the ‘sites of conscience’ movement. The website provides links to ‘sites of conscience’, tools and resources.
Policy Analysis and Practitioner Documents (View All 8 Matches)
Source: Ereshnee Naidu and Cyril AdonisThis report aims to outline research of South African youth as well as the notion that memories continue to affect generations even when they do not directly experience a specific traumatic event. Primary themes include “life in the new South Africa; reconciliation and the role of memory and forgiveness in the reconciliation process; understandings of the TRC; learning about the past; sites of learning about the past”; and the inherent link between memory and identity. The authors argue for the need to remember the past in a way that allows for critical citizenship engagement as well as one that enables the current and future generations to take constructive ownership of that history and conclude with recommendations of tools for engaging youth, relevant to actors in various sectors.
Source: Elizabeth A. Cole and Judy Barsalou, United State Institute of PeaceThis report surveys the major issues, challenges, dilemmas and debates concerning the teaching of history in the aftermath of violent conflict. The findings of the report are based on a conference hosted by USIP, with assistance from the Carnegie Council on Ethics and International Affairs (CCEIA). Primary topics discussed include: the influence of historical narratives in deeply divided societies; the trend to suspend history education after violent conflict and its implications on the society; pedagogy’s importance to reform efforts in deeply divided societies; structural issues in the education system that determine education’s role in post-conflict social reconstruction; the role of outsiders; and the linkages between history education and transitional justice. The authors argue that greater investment is necessary to train history teachers in new ways to address difficult subjects in their classrooms. They conclude by emphasizing the urgent need for extensive research on the state, principles, approaches, practices and impact of history education in order to effectively utilize it in post-conflict social reconstruction.
Source: Judy Barsalou and Victoria BaxterThis report aims to identify the challenges for those seeking to repair societies post-conflict through memorialization. Primary issues include: memorialization is highly politicized and is affected by who initiates the processes and when; outside providers of assistance play an important but delicate role in memorialization efforts and should be careful not to overstep their roles with respect to local actors; the process of determining what shape a memorial project should take and how memorial space should be used is essential; the repeated failure to deal with memorials and their potentially negative impact can imperil transitional justice efforts and peacebuilding; that successful memorialization draws upon specialists from many fields; in planning and budgeting for tribunals and truth commissions, national and international authorities need to consciously lay the groundwork for national memorialization projects designed to advance the goals of earlier transitional justice initiatives; and effective evaluation also requires assessments before, during, and after project implementation, as well as the understanding that future generations may form entirely different, unanticipated opinions of a memorial. The authors conclude that international actors interested in aiding in memorialization efforts must recognize and respect these challenges.