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Narratives of Memory, Migration, Xenophobia and European Identity: Intercultural Dialogues
Start date: Sep 1, 2016, End date: Aug 31, 2018 PROJECT  FINISHED 

This project will examine how narratives of memory, migration, and xenophobia are interlinked and shape current politics of migration and the European identity. Our overall goal is two-fold: to understand how memory politics and narratives of the past inform current political decisions, while also exploring how Holocaust Education, Education for Democratic Citizenship, and Human Rights Education can be deployed as agents of change and resistance to destabilizing and fracturing discourses. Our interdisciplinary research team (comprised of scholars in the Social Sciences, Humanities, and Music) will explore how varied agents of memory – including the music we listen to, the (his)stories that we tell, and the political and social actions that we engage in – create narratives of the past that critically contest and challenge xenophobic and nationalistic renderings of Europe’s prospects. The proposed project has two pillars: first, the project team will deliver an international summer school for graduate students that will focus on an in-depth exploration of the project’s themes in four representative locations that are crucial to the formation of European Memory: France, Germany, Hungary, and Canada. The summer school will bring together graduate students from Europe and Canada in order to facilitate a rich exchange of ideas and experiences. A particular objective of the summer field school will be to use the Canadian experience with multiculturalism, refugee resettlement, and the recently published Truth and Reconciliation report as a comparative touch point for understanding pan-European challenges in light of the current refugee crisis. The summer school will culminate in the second pillar of the project, an international two-day symposium, anchored by a scholarly panel discussion, public presentations, and performances of site-specific music compositions.

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