Public History Explorers: July Newsletter

Explorers for this Issue: Andrea Oldani, Bruno Grigoletti Laitano, Caroline B. McGee, Marcus Golding, Antonio Chiaese, Amanda Smith, Jimena Perry

Featured Post: Irish History

Find out how archival sources shed light on Ireland´s early experience with emigration and how public access to these archives is spreading through Europe.

Robinson settlement of Peterborough was the end of an experiment
William Forbes Adams wrote one of the first books on Irish history that focused on Ireland’s early experience with emigration. The topic seemed one that could be researched in Ireland or in Canada but the major resources for understanding emigration were actually in London, and the Public Record Office (PRO). This was understood quite early by the Public Archives of Canada (now the Library and Archives of Canada) which had a program for transcribing documents in the PRO and publishing calendars or summaries of the key documents related to Canada. Details.

Civilising Rural Ireland: the co-operative movement, development, and the nation-state, 1889-1939
Patrick Doyle is Hallsworth Research Fellow at the University of Manchester and has published a comprehensive account of the co-operative movement’s introduction to Irish society, the book offers an analysis of the importance of these radical economic ideas upon political Irish nationalism. Details.

ARGENTINA

Abren el primer archivo público por la memoria del Holocausto del país
Con más de mil títulos, entre investigaciones, ficciones y ensayos. “La mayor causa del antisemitismo es la ignorancia”, dicen desde el centro Wiesenthal, que impulsó la idea. El valor de la propuesta está dado por el hecho de que, de manera gratuita, cualquier interesado podrá acceder a material histórico que, a su vez, cumple la función de resguardarnos como sociedad de los horrores del pasado. Detalles.

First Archive for the Holocaust´s Memory in the Country
It contains more than one thousand documents between investigations, fiction, and essays. “The greatest cause of antisemitism is ignorance,” state members of the Wiesenthal Center, where the idea surged. This archive is very significant because anyone interested can access historical material that fulfills the role of denouncing the horrors of the past. Details.

“El cine es como un Arca de Noé de la memoria histórica”, dice Benjamín Naishtat
El cineasta Benjamín Naishtat destacó el papel fundamental que juega el cine en la preservación de la memoria histórica. Indicó que en Latinoamérica sí hay un esfuerzo social activo que busca preservar la memoria histórica y comparó al cine con un “Arca de Noé” que preserva memorias para las futuras generaciones. El director de cine estrenó en el Festival de San Sebastián el film “Rojo”, ambientada en la Argentina de los años 70 y reflexiona sobre la erosión de la democracia y el auge de grupos de ultraderecha. Detalles.

“Movies are like Noah´s Ark for Historical Memory,” says Benjamín Naishtat
Filmaker Benjamin Naishtat underscored the crucial role played by the film industry in the preservation of historical memory. He mentioned that in Latin America there is an active social effort to preserve historical memory. He compared the film industry to Noah’s Ark which preserves memories for future generations. The filmmaker projected “Red”, his latest film at the San Sebastian Festival, which focuses on the erosion of democratic rule and the rise of extreme-right groups in the Argentina of the 1970s. Details.

BRAZIL

Perspectivas da Historia Pública        
No dia 13 de junho, a cidade de Porto Alegre sediou duas conferências sobre História Pública. A primeira discutiu as suas perspectivas no Brasil. Foi apresentada por Ricardo Santhiago (Universidade Federal de São Paulo) e mediada por Jurandir Malerba (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul). A segunda conferência explorou questões raciais e relações de raça em projetos de História Pública. Foi apresentada por Ana Flávia Magalhães Pinto (Universidade de Brasília) e por Marcelo Abreu (Universidade Federal de Ouro Preto). O debate foi mediado por Marcus Vinícius de Freitas (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul). O evento foi organizado pelo LUPPA (Laboratório de Estudos sobre os Usos Políticos do Passado) e pelo Programa de Pós-Graduação em História da Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul. Detalles.

Public History Perspectives
On June 13, Porto Alegre hosted two conferences on Public History. The first one discussed its perspectives in Brazil. It was presented by Ricardo Santhiago (Federal University of São Paulo) and mediated by Jurandir Malerba (Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul). The second conference explored racial issues and race relations regarding Public History projects. It was presented by Ana Flávia Magalhães Pinto (University of Brasilia) and Marcelo Abreu (Federal University of Ouro Preto). The debate was mediated by Marcus Vinícius de Freitas (Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul). The event was organized by LUPPA (Laboratory on Studies about Political Uses of the Past) and by the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul History Graduate Program. Details.

GUATEMALA

Los peligros de un Archivo, memoria viva de Guatemala

El Archivo Histórico de la Policía Nacional (AHPN) cumplió 14 años de un hallazgo considerado hoy como pieza clave en la búsqueda de justicia y recuperación de la memoria histórica en Guatemala. Apilados, en desorden, y parcialmente deteriorados por humedad, roedores y hongos, salieron a la luz fortuitamente unos 60 millones de folios entre 1882 y 1997 y que el Gobierno negaba categóricamente su existencia. Detalles.

An Archive´s Perils, Guatemala´s Living Memory

The discovery of the National Police Historical Archive 14 years ago has been considered a key piece in the search for justice and memory in Guatemala. Approximately, 60 million folios that were deteriorated by humidity and of the period between 1882 and 1997 were recovered after the government emphatically denied their existence. Details.

MEXICO

La América Latina de los españoles es imaginaria

Entrevista al historiador Tomás Pérez Vejo quien analiza las distancias existentes que existen en la interpretación del pasado colonial entre españoles y latinoamericanos hoy en día. Detalles.

The Latin America of the Spaniards is imaginary
Interview of Tomás Pérez Vejo who analyzes the existing interpretative gaps about the colonial past between Spaniards and Latin-Americans in our times. Details.

La Negociación de las representaciones de México en el cine estadounidense
El Seminario de Historia de Baja California organizará el 31 de julio una conferencia sobre la negación de las representaciones de México en el cine estadounidense. Detalles.

Negotiating Mexican Representations in North American Movies
The History Seminar of Baja California will organize a conference this 31st of July on the negation of Mexico’s representations in the U.S. cinema. Details.

PERU

Declaran el 24 de julio como Día Nacional de la Batalla de Zarumilla
El Congreso de la República promulgó el 24 de julio como El Día Nacional de la Batalla de Zarumilla. El objetivo de dicha ley es conmemorar, promover y preservar la memoria histórica de dicho evento histórico. La Batalla de Zarumilla fue un enfrentamiento armado entre los ejércitos de Perú y Ecuador ocurrido el 24 de julio de 1941 y que culminó con victoria peruana. Detalles.

July 24th was Declared by the Government as the National Day of the Zarumilla Battle
The Peruvian Congress promulgated a law that celebrates the Battle of Zarumilla as a national holiday. The goal behind this legislation is to commemorate, promote and preserve the memory of that historical event. The Battle of Zarumilla was an armed conflict between the armies of Peru and Ecuador that took place the 24th of July of 1941 and that ended with a Peruvian victory. Details.

FRANCE

Soixante ans après Malraux, vers la privatisation de la culture
En France, le ministère de la culture vient de souffler sa 60e bougie. Dans cet article, une journaliste de France Culture revient sur des débats culturels actuels comme la place du mécénat privé dans les institutions publiques et la « rentabilité » de la culture. Détails  

Towards the privatization of culture sixty years after Malraux

In France, the Ministry of Culture has just celebrated its 60th birthday. In this article, a journalist discusses some current cultural debates such as the role of private philanthropy in public cultural institutions and the “profitability” of culture. Details

ITALY

2° Scuola di Storia Orale nella Valle del Dragone
AISO (Associazione Italiana di Storia Orale) organizzerà a inizio agosto la seconda edizione della Scuola di Storia Orale nella Valle del Dragone, nell’Appennino Tosco-Emiliano. Si tratta di una scuola oral-visual pensata per interpretare sul campo il paesaggio e le memorie che suscita; si effettueranno interviste orali agli abitanti del territorio, si andrà a riconoscere il vissuto dei luoghi attraverso l’uso della macchina fotografica e, infine, raccolta e trattamento delle erbe spontanee. Detagli.

Second Oral History Summer School in the “Valle del Dragone”
AISO (Italian Association of Oral History) has organized the second edition of the Oral History Summer School in the “Valle del Dragone” in the Appennini’s Mountains. It is an oral and visual workshop that aims to interpret the landscape alongside the memories that it raises. The experience will be focused on: oral interviews with the local inhabitants, recognizing the heritage of some local places through the use of cameras and then collecting spontaneous plants. Details.

Come possiamo riconciliarci con la nostra storia coloniale se continuiamo a negarla?

A inizio luglio Manlio Di Stefano, Sottosegretario del Ministero degli Esteri Italiani, ha postato un commento shock su Facebook. Innanzitutto ha negato il passato coloniale italiano, che in realtà coprì un arco cronologico compreso tra il 1882 e il 1945 e coinvolse paesi come Etiopia, Somalia, Eritrea e Libia. Poi ha negato i bombardamenti commessi dagli Italiani a danno delle popolazioni locali scordandosi di quanto avvenne durante la Guerra di Libia (1911-1912) e la successiva guerra di riconquista degli anni Venti o dell’uso di bombe a gas sganciate durante la Campagna d’Etiopia (1935-1936). L’Italia ammise quest’ultimo crimine nel 1996, ma la maggior parte degli Italiani crede ancora nel mito del “colonialismo italiano dal lato umano e buono”. Questo fenomeno di analfabetismo storico può essere contrasto in parte facendo conoscere alla gente progetti come Campi Fascisti (http://campifascisti.it/mappe.php) , un sito che sta mappando le prigioni e i campi di concentramento italiani costruiti durante il Ventennio Fascista, o Memorie Coloniali  (http://www.memoriecoloniali.org/), un associazione di Modena che raccoglie fonti private di persone che combatterono e vissero nelle colonie italiane. Detagli.

How can we reconcile with our colonial history if we still negate it? 
At the beginning of July Manlio Di Stefano, Undersecretary of the Italian Foreign Office, posted a shocking post on Facebook. He negated Italian Colonial History, that lasted from 1882 to 1945 and involved countries like Ethiopia, Somalia, Eritrea and Lybia. Furthermore, he negated Italian war crimes committed during the Italian Colonial History. Some of the most famous were: the bombing of Lybian people during the War of Lybia (1912 the gas bombs used during the invasion of Ethiopia (1935-1936). Italy finally admitted those crimes – the use of gas against Ethiopian people – only in 1996 but still a lot of Italian people believe in the myth of “the good Italian colonialism”. This historical illiteracy can be contrasted by showing people the existence of projects such as Campi Fascisti (http://campifascisti.it/mappe.php), a web site that mapped all the Italian prisons and concentration camps build by the the Fascist Government, or Memorie Coloniali (http://www.memoriecoloniali.org/), an association of Modena that collects private documents from people that fought and lived in the Italian colonies. Details.

LITUANIA

Vilnius decides to rename Skirpa street despite protests
After months of interlocutory (and often contradictory) acts, the Municipality of Vilnius appears to have started to bow to national and especially international pressure, and taken a more resolute stance in the row around the public glorification of Lithuanian “heroes” involved, during the Second World War, in the genocide of the local Litvak Jewish population.
On July 24th, with a thin majority of 21 vs 16, the city council approved a resolution aimed to change the name of Kazio Škirpos Aleja, a street in the historical centre of Vilnius named after Kazys Škirpa, prime minister of the Nazi-backed Provisional Government of Lithuania ruling the country in 1941. Škirpa’s notoriously antisemitic views were fully deployed in several pahmplets and documents, where he laid out the vision of a future independent, Jews-free Lithuania. Details.

A memorial plaque to J. Noreika was removed from the building of the Academy of Sciences in Vilnius

In an even more sensational move, on July 26th the Mayor of Vilnius Remigijus Simautis ordered the removal of a memorial plaque placed on the façade of the National Academy of Sciences and commemorating Jonas Noreika, one of the leaders of anti-Soviet resistance (with his nom de guerre Generolas Vėtra, “General Storm”) charged with an active responsibility in the massacre in 1941 of the Jewish population of the area of Šiauliai, district whose he had been appointed chief by the Provisional Government. Restored in the original place after its sensational destruction livestreamed on social media by the activist Stanislas Tomas, the plaque seems to have been removed in the night between the 26th and the 27th, in an attempt to avoid the staging of riots and public protests by patriotic organizations and nationalist militants. Details.


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