The Memory Culture in the third decade of the 21st Century
– From Silence to Holocaust Distortion
A public debate entitled “The Memory Culture in the third decade of the 21st Century – From Silence to Holocaust Distortion” will be held on January 24 at the Cultural Center of Novi Sad from 18:00 – 19:30
The event is a part of a broader program dedicated to commemorating the Novi Sad Raid and International Holocaust Remembrance Day.
Such an event is annually organized by Terraforming in cooperation with the Cultural Center of Novi Sad and the Historical Archives of the City of Novi Sad. This is the fourth year since this cooperation started.
This year the focus will be on the relevance of Holocaust memory in contemporary societies and the problem of Holocaust distortion and politicization.
Manipulation and abuse of the Holocaust for nationalist, anti-EU, pro-Russian, and antisemitic propaganda is increasingly mainstreamed in the media, in the political narratives, and in the representation of this history in memorialization and education. This has become the main contemporary challenge. How can we work together to address it?
At the beginning of the program, we will see video messages sent for this occasion by several international experts. We have asked them to give their comments on three questions:
- How could we better utilize and work more on transnational aspects of the Holocaust, emphasizing that it is a large and essential part of our shared historical experience and cultural heritage?
- Why is Holocaust distortion so dangerous? Why is it so important to address it? Are people more receptive to Holocaust distortion now than before?
- How to create and maintain a proper balance between respectful learning about the victims and their lives on one hand and, on the other, achieving other educational goals of teaching and learning about the Holocaust, such as embracing critical thinking and democratic competencies? How to avoid “abusing” the Holocaust victims as a simple illustration for “making a point” about a different topic?
- Mirna Herman, Herman Foundation, Center for the Culture of Remembrance, Zagreb, Croatia;
- Asja Drača Muntean, executive director of the “Staro Sajmište” Memorial Center, Belgrade;
- Davor Salom, Jewish Community of Belgrade
- Petar Đurđev, director of the Historical Archives of the City of Novi Sad;
- Miško Stanišić, director of Terraforming, Novi Sad, will be the host and moderator.
International experts with prerecorded video responses to our main topics and questions:
- Andrea Szonyi, Head of Programs for International Education, USC Shoah Foundation and Zachor Foundation (Budapest, Hungary)
- Nina Krieger, Executive Director at Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre (Vancouver, Canada)
- Alex Maws, Head of Educational Projects, The Association of Jewish Refugees (London, UK)