Do the Balkans produce more history that it can consume? What does it actually mean when a society ‘consumes’ history? How can responsible history education be promoted in the region? How can history teachers in the Western Balkans approach sensitive and controversial issues in the classroom?
All these topics and many more were addressed on December 18 at a public debate hosted by the House of European History in Brussels, and co-organised by the European Association of History Educators (EUROCLIO) and the Centre for Democracy and Reconciliation in South East Europe (CDRSEE), in partnership with the International Students of History Association (ISHA).
Participants proposed ways forward for history educators and other stakeholders to deal with the history of the wars of the 1990s in Yugoslavia through a number of compelling presentations. Our very own Mr Costa Carras, Special Rapporteur to the Joint History Project and CDRSEE Board Member discussed history education through the lenses of the Joint History Project, a groundbreaking initiative that transformed history teaching in the region of Southeast Europe (you can find the full text of his speech here).
The conference was marked by lively debates with selected international guests reflecting the most pressing issues and challenges related to history education in the region. Thoughtful debates about the reality of teaching sensitive history and the needs of the teachers which are faced with such a challenge took place throughout the one-day conference that offered a space for sharing best practices and connecting stakeholders working on history education as a tool for reconciliation.
The event was organised in the framework of the Education Partnership for Advocacy, Capacity-Building and Transformation (ePACT) project.