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Understanding and overcoming conflict

Bonn international conference on history teaching and peacebuilding. 18 - 21 March 2020


 Understanding and overcoming conflict abgesagt



Hosted by: Department of History Didactics and Department for Early Modern History and Rhenish Regional History in cooperation with Centre for Historical Peace Studies, Bonn University


Since the Interwar Period, history teaching is considered simultaneously an important source of international conflict and a means of overcoming it. Textbooks and history lessons undoubtedly play a vital role in the creation of mental maps and stereotypes. Other nations are constructed as enemies, rivals, partners, or even friends. In other words: History teaching matters for issues of conflict and peacebuilding. By combining the specific approaches and competences of peace research and history didactics in an international conference we want to shed some light on some of today's most relevant questions:


  • How can we evaluate the impact of history teaching in conflicts and processes of peacebuilding compared to other factors?
  • Is it possible to identify general patterns of narratives endorsing conflict or peacebuilding?
  • What master narratives – and counter-narratives – can be identified in societies that try to overcome conflict? 
  • To what extent are the methodological features of history teaching linked to the epistemology of the historical discipline?
  • How – and to what extent – are political authorities able to control history teaching?
  • Is there any dialogue between neighbouring states (or between different groups within the same state) on controversial issues in history teaching?
The conference programme can be downloaded here.