The past is often a source of conflicting interpretations rather than easy consensus. Still, historical identity is central to relations between states and people in the here and now. Last year, the Evens Foundation launched a new initiative on European history and joined forces with EUROCLIO, the European Association of History Educators, to carry it out.
With the Sharing European Histories initiative the Evens Foundation and EUROCLIO are seeking to support and disseminate innovative (research) projects and pioneering approaches, resources or practices that help young people (and by extension the general public) to understand the complexity and multiplicity of European history, and recognize how history can engage everyone in understanding Europe and their part within it.
We believe that opening up a space to engage with the dissonant and often conflictual nature of European history is the first step in discovering common positions or overcoming divisions while acknowledging existing differences.
In response to our call for applications, we received a wide range of ideas and project proposals from all over Europe.
In close consultation with an international expert group we selected and invited five individual contributors and two projects to further develop their ideas and projects.
The individual contributors - Gentian Dedja (Albania), Juan Carlos Ocaña (Spain), Elisabete Pereira (Portugal), Helen Snelson (UK) and Joanna Wojdon (Poland) - are currently in the process of rewriting the teaching strategies they proposed to engage with European history, making them accessible and user-friendly for history educators across Europe. These strategies will be presented during the next EUROCLIO conference.
The two projects that were selected for a grant were launched in Autumn.
The Croatian History Teachers Association will start working with local history hubs as an innovative model for students and teachers to learn about the imperial legacies in and diversity of the region through exploring local heritage.
The EUscreen Foundation and the European Network Remembrance and Solidarity aim to promote critical historical thinking among young people by developing and testing three new interactive learning activities based largely on audiovisual archival content coming from the EUscreen collection in their project (Re)Viewing European Stories. These activities will focus on changing borders and migrating individuals as a result of regional, national or international conflicts in Europe.