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On September 7, 2016 we launch the Culture and Politics of Reconciliation, a semester-long Syracuse University Abroad program organized in partnership with the University of Lower Silesia in Wroclaw, Poland. Together with our students, we begin our journey through which we explore the memories of conflict and ongoing processes of reconciliation in Central Europe.
Visit suabroad.syr.edu/admissions to apply now!
During our stay in Krasnogruda, near the town of Sejny, we had the honor and pleasure of meeting the Minister of Culture of Poland, Malgorzata Omilanowska. She was surprised to find a group of American students visiting the Borderland Foundation’s Center for International Dialogue, and questioned our reason for being here. more
In the heart of Berlin there lies a monument. The enormity of this monument catches the eye of whoever walks or drives by regardless if they are in Berlin to see it or not. more
Begun as a space for the general public of Germany to meet and gather together under a monument of victory over Napoleon, Centennial Hall in Wroclaw is a space with a rich history, famous present and inspirational future. more
From the mountains and foothills of the northwestern segment of the Czech Republic to the expansive metropolis of Berlin to the somber town of Oswiecim, the lands of east central Europe contain a vast history that, a few decades ago, experienced quite a great deal of strife. more
“Commemorating the dead is part of human culture. Commemorating the fallen is … part of political culture.”
This semester we’ve visited countless sites of memory and seen plenty of examples of commemoration including cemeteries, monuments and memorials. more
…Or rebuilt. In Berlin – a city physically divided for 28 years and socially, economically and politically divided for over 40 – the fall of the wall broke the barriers of communication enforced in the east by the Soviet regime… more
It is a strange phenomenon that, when facing the past, even those who did not experience events can be marked by them. Especially in the twentieth century, we who study human history and its consequences encounter ferocity, the likes of which are found neither in nature nor in reason. more
From the time I had appeared at the international airport in Vilnius, Lithuania to the first minute our group presented ourselves at our hostel in Warsaw, we gained significant insight to the lessons of … more
While the Holocaust history of Lublin is devastating, the current civil engagement built around the memory of a multicultural past is admirable and can inspire efforts in other places. Since the 1990s the Grodzka Gate – NN Theater, a city-funded cultural institution, has undertaken an enormous effort at reassembling the history of a multicultural city by collecting archival materials, photographs and also oral histories and testimonies of people that live or once lived in the city. more
The once flourishing Jewish life in Vilnius came to an end in the Paneriai, a suburb of the Lithuanian capital, where beginning in the summer of 1941, six months before the Wannsee Conference, 72,000 mostly Lithuanian Jews were shot and buried in pits. Another 30,000 people lost their lives in the forest, mostly Polish intellectuals and members of the underground Home Army as well as Soviet POWs. more