Europe between War and Peace 1914-2004
April 9-11th, 2014, Prague
Conference Venue: Czernin Palace, Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Prague
From April 9-11th 2014 the European Remembrance symposium will be held in Prague. This is the third time that representatives from over 150 European institutions and organizations dealing with 20th-century history will discuss today’s attitude towards remembrance in the context of this year’s anniversaries of important historical events. The symposium is an initiative of the European Network Remembrance and Solidarity.
“We are convinced that there is a need for mutual and multidimensional reflection on the history of the 20th century. A reflection which would take into account diverse narrations and sensitivity as well as different historical experiences and their interpretations” explains professor Jan Rydel, Polish coordinator of ENRS. “The main objective of the event is to support ongoing projects and to create common ground for exchanging good practice. We want to encourage new initiatives which could help to create better understanding of different perspectives on the history of Europe.”
This year, the symposium is titled: “European year of history: turning points in 20th-century European history. Europe between war and peace 1914 -2004.” The discussion will be accompanied by reminiscing of events whose anniversaries overlap in the 2014: the 100th anniversary of the First World War, the 75th anniversary of the Second World War and the 25th anniversary of the events of 1989.
Marci Shore, American historian specializing in the history of Eastern Europe and lecturer at Yale University (USA) will commence the symposium with her speech about breakthrough moments in the European history, years: 1914, 1939, 1945, and 1989.
During this three-day meeting the participants will take part in discussions and workshops. They will also have an opportunity to attend lectures of many historians dealing with 20th-century history, including James Mark from University of Exeter, Heidemarie Uhl from Austrian Academy of Sciences, Wlodzimierz Borodziej from Warsaw University, Friedrich Schiller from University of Jena, and Oldřich Tůma from the Institute of Contemporary History of The Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic.
The symposium will end with Pieter Lagrou’s (Free University of Brussels) speech about the way the history is perceived 25 years after the end of communism.
Another part of the programme is an exhibit entitled Between Democracy and Dictatorship, consisting of almost 200 photographs and audio documents from various European archives.The exhibition is organized by Professor Andras Wirsching and dr Petra Weber of the Institute of Contemporary History in Munich. The participants of the symposium will also visit Lidice, an important place to Czechs, where on 10 June 1942 Nazi Germans committed massive extermination.
“We hope that European Remembrance symposium will become an important event among other ventures concerning history and memory,” explains Rafal Rogulski, ENRS Secretariat Director. “We would like the symposium to become a platform for exchange of opinions, for meetings and discussions of different views, a place where we can argue about and agree on controversial issues, and where we can experience how remembrance is perceived in the host country.”
The series of European Remembrance symposia was introduced in 2011 in Gdańsk. The year after that, the event took place in Berlin. The next year’s edition is planned to be hold in Vienna.
This year’s partners are: the Institute of Contemporary History of The Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic and European Commission.
The detailed program of the conference is accessible on the website: www.europeanremembrance.enrs.eu
The European Network Remembrance and Solidarity (ENRS)
An international initiative that aims to research, document and promote the study of 20th– century European history and the means by which it is remembered, with particular focus on periods of war, dictatorial regimes and resistance to oppression. Member countries of the Network are Germany, Poland, Slovakia, and Hungary, Romania is soon to join, while Austria and the Czech Republic have observer status. www.enrs.eu
Federal Foundation for the Reappraisal of the SED Dictatorship
The Federal Foundation was founded in 1998 by the German parliament. Its legal mandate allows it to research the causes and effects of the dictatorship in the Soviet Occupation Zone, later the German Democratic Republic. It promotes history projects, memorials, history education in schools and scientific research. It also provides counselling for victims of the communist dictatorship.
European Solidarity Centre, Gdańsk
Established in 2007, the European Solidarity Centre in Gdańsk is a museum as well as an educational and research centre. It focuses on the history of the Solidarity movement and on promoting civil society and democracy. It also supports freedom and solidarity in countries which are still under authoritarian regimes.
Contact for media:
European Network Remembrance and Solidarity
Tel. +48 502.110.315