Online Roundtable Discussion: "After the War – Beginning Life Anew in the Aftermath of Violence in 1945"
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This roundtable discussion brings three specialists on Eastern European history into a conversation about what happens when war ends. How do individuals and communities survive genocidal atrocities? How do survivors deal with trauma, destruction, and loss? How do they seek justice? And how can post-war communities be rebuilt in the aftermath of violence, border shifts and forced migrations?
Based on their expertise on three countries in the region: Ukraine, Belarus and Poland, our speakers will try to answer the question of how understanding World War II and its aftermath may give us insights into the current war in Ukraine and what we can expect after its end. Revisiting the history of 1944, and of the destruction that World War II and the Holocaust brought over the region, our guests will shed light on how individuals re-inhabit war-ravaged spaces, taking as an example the depopulated shtetls of the post-war Polish-Belarusian-Ukrainian borderland. They will also address the question of how the history of World War II remains relevant for the current war in Ukraine, and how today’s conflict impacts historical research, creating new myths and new minefields.
The discussion will be simultaneously translated into English and Belarusian.
Gabriele Freitag, German Association for East European Studies
Moderator: Magdalena Waligórska, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Natalia Aleksiun, University of Florida
Franziska Exeler, Cambridge University/Freie Universität Berlin
Yechiel Weizman, Bar Ilan Univeristy, Israel
Hosted by the Forum für Historisches Belarus-Forschung und Deutsche Gesellschaft für Osteuropakunde e.V.