Entries by Anita Jakubik

Auschwitz-Birkenau: Working in Secret

By Kyra McDermott In today’s recounting of history, Auschwitz-Birkenau is often at the forefront of Holocaust memory as the best-known concentration and extermination camp from this era. However, Auschwitz-Birkenau operated in secret for years during the Holocaust before any action was taken to liberate the prisoners. Those in charge of the camp made many deliberate […]

Suffering for Freedom: Socialist Realism in Memorialization

By Taylor Krzeminski “Herein lies the strength of the Red Army. And herein lies the weakness of the German fascist army.” – Josef Stalin The capital of a former fascist and communist state, a city of destruction and liberation – Berlin occupies a special place in memorial culture. At the Treptower Park Soviet Memorial, historical memorialization […]

Who’s Watching?

By Sarah McLafferty One of the most characteristic aspects of the communist rule in 20th century Central and Eastern Europe was the use of the secret police to keep the population in line with the ideals of the party. The secrecy surrounding the secret police have captivated people’s interests while also evoking a sense of […]

Rethinking Remembrance

By Rody Conway The 20th century was a century of unprecedented growth, prosperity, and freedom. Conversely, the events of the 20th century set the bar for the scope of human cruelty. While genocide has existed for as long as there have been people, the frequency of large-scale attempts at eliminating entire defined groups of people […]

What Constitutes a Good Museum?

  By Ciera Moore Since coming to Central Europe, we have visited many museums. Some of them were really interesting and introduced us to new information like the Holocaust museum in Budapest. Other museums were not as informative or were very flashy and over-the-top such as the House of Terror also located in Budapest. Our […]

This History Is (Not) For You

By Aren Burnside Monuments, memorials, and museums all attempt to convey history to their visitors. Yet what audience are these structures aimed at? To whom are these monuments, memorials, and museums meant to teach history? In an era of increasing globalization and international travel, it might be easy to say everyone. However, an important feature […]

The Birth of an Idea

By Raymundo Juarez At 6:00, on a Saturday morning, my alarm rang the new day in, waking me up for one of my regular A.M. runs. The circumstances, however, were not regular. This was my first morning waking up in a foreign country, having landed in the city of Budapest less than 12 hours before.  […]

Nations as Extended Family

By Autumn McMillan I’ve been to five countries in the last two weeks – Hungary, Slovakia, Austria, Poland, and Czech Republic. When I call home to my friends I always make sure to open up with this punch-line. Yet during my journey through these five countries, a frustrating contradiction stood out to me. Each of […]

The Political Power of Victimhood and Guilt

By Jay Skelton Everyone has been a victim of something, of someone; and, because of that, everyone feels sorry for a fellow victim.  Everyone can respect a fellow victim.  Everyone can trust a fellow victim.  But what if that person that is respected, that is trusted, is not the victim at all.  What if those […]