In recent months, the Black Lives Matter movement has powerfully turned our attention to the enduring legacies of the past in the present. It has also sparked urgent conversations about how history is represented on our streets and in our political life and public conversations. What role do statues, memorials, and museums play? Is the politicization of history unavoidable? Which parts of the past should be remembered? Who decides what we remember, and how? In these lectures we will explore these and other compelling questions surrounding the memorialisation of difficult pasts, from apartheid South Africa to the genocide in Rwanda and the Holocaust.
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Shirli Gilbert is Professor of Modern Jewish History at University College London. She has previously held positions at the Universities of Southampton, Cape Town and Michigan. Professor Gilbert has written on the role of music in the Nazi ghettos and camps, German-Jewish refugees, Displaced Persons, and how the Holocaust shaped understandings of and responses to apartheid in South Africa. Her most recent book explores the issue of Holocaust memory and postwar racism.
Jonathan Jansen is Distinguished Professor of Education at Stellenbosch University and President of the Academy of Science of South Africa. He is a curriculum theorist, and his research is concerned with the politics of knowledge. His 2019/2020 books (co-authored, co-edited) include South African Schooling: The enigma of inequality, Fault lines: a primer on race, science and society, Who gets in and why: the politics of admission in South Africa’s elite schools, Learning under lockdown: voices of South Africa’s children, and Learning Lessons.