The seminar for teachers “Teaching about the Holocaust and human rights: Learning from the past – acting for the future” was held on 22-26. august at the Sheraton Hotel in Novi Sad.
The seminar was organized within the EU program “Europe for Citizens” in cooperation with TOLI-The Olga Lengyel Institute for Holocaust Studies and Human Rights from New York, Fondazione Centro di Documentazione Ebraica Contemporanea from Milan and the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of the Republic of Serbia.
Organized in the framework of the project Intolerance Has No Place in the 21st Century, co-funded by the Europe for Citizens Programme of the European Union, coordinated by Fondazione Centro di Documentazione Ebraica Contemporanea (Italy) and implemented in partnership with the Intercultural Institute Timisoara (Romania), Terraforming (Serbia), Big Picture Association (Poland) and The Olga Lengyel Institute for Holocaust Studies and Human Rights (U.S.A.)
A formal reception
The seminar was officially opened on August 22nd at 6 pm, with a formal reception in the yard of the Archives of Vojvodina.
The guests at the reception were addressed by:
– Nemanja Starović, State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Serbia and Head of the Delegation of the Republic of Serbia to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance-IHRA
– Dalibor Rožić, member of the City Council for Culture of the City of Novi Sad
– Dr. Nebojša Kuzmanović, director of the Archives of Vojvodina
– Miško Stanišić, director of the Terraforming organization and member of the delegation of the Republic of Serbia in the International Alliance for Holocaust Remembrance-IHRA
– Oana Bajka, Deputy Director of the European TOLI Program
On the first day of the seminar, the teachers talked with Dr. Oana Nestian-Sandu from the TOLI Institute about discrimination and stereotypes that we encounter and ways to overcome them through education. Professor and director of the Fondazione Centro di Documentazione Ebraica Contemporanea in Milan Gadi Luzzatto Voghera spoke about the history of anti-Semitism, while the famous German expert and member of the country’s delegation to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance Dr. Wolf Kaiser gave a lecture on the Holocaust in Europe. At the end of the first day of the seminar prof. Dr. Vuk Dautović introduced us to the history and present of the Jewish community in Serbia.
On the second day of the seminar, Dr. Milan Koljanin gave a lecture on the Holocaust in Serbia and human rights for educators. Divided into groups, the participants also talked to Olga Andraši, Mirko Stefanović and Vladimir Todorović, three representatives of the second generation of Holocaust survivors, and heard their testimonies. The participants of the seminar also had an expert guide through the city with the director of the Historical Archives of the City of Novi Sad Petar Đurđev, who spoke to the teachers about the Raid in 1942. and the years in Novi Sad under occupation. The participants visited the Novi Sad synagogue and got acquainted with the history of the Jewish community in our city. They visited the Archives of Vojvodina and the Museum of Accession.
On the third day, Dr. Sanja Petrović-Todosijević spoke about the culture of the Holocaust remembrance. Genocide against Roma and anti-Gypsyism were the topics of lectures by Dr. Milovan Pisarri from the Centre for Public History. During the lecture, participants gave many examples of anti-Gypsyism today, which is represented in primary and secondary schools. The founders of Terraforming Nevena Bajalica and Miško Stanišić talked about the role of micro-histories in Holocaust education and their importance in understanding the wider context of the Holocaust in Europe. As an example of microhistory, Nevena Bajalica presented the fate of German Jews in the Netherlands and the story of Eva Schloss. At the end of the day, Dr. Oana Nestian-Sandu held a workshop on teaching about the Holocaust and human rights.
The last day of the seminar “Learning from the past – acting for the future” began with a lecture on the use of graphic novels in Holocaust education by the director of Terraforming, Miško Stanišić. Through a joint workshop, the teachers got acquainted with the new graphic novel that Terraforming is working on, which talks about the suffering of Roma in the Second World War. Prof. Dr Marko Šuica gave a lecture on the challenges of teaching about the Holocaust, presenting ways to deal with them. Oana Bajka from the TOLI Institute presented to the teachers the possibilities of using the mini-grant program for educating students on the topic of the Holocaust and human rights.
Over 90 teachers applied for the seminar, but due to the limited place, 35 teachers from Belgrade, Bor, Jagodina, Kladovo, Kragujevac, Kraljevo, Laplje Selo, Niš, Platičevo, Sombor, Sopot, Trstenik and Ub participated in the seminar.
The seminar ended with the awarding of certificates to the first generation of teachers of the TOLI network of educators. We thank to the co-organizers for the wonderful cooperation! We thank the lecturers for interesting, inspiring and useful lectures, as well as a great group of participants for their motivation, dedicated work and active participation during the discussions!