Call for Applications: German-Russian Student Exchange on Culture of Remembrance II

Call for Applications: German-Russian Student Exchange on Culture of Remembrance II

Following last year’s highly successful project “Memory as a Tool of Change: Lessons Learned from Germany”, IFAIR brings young Germans and Russians together once more to address their shared history of totalitarianism and discuss their respective commemorative culture. This year, we will focus on places of persecution and expulsion in Russia. “Memory as a Tool of Change: Forgotten Places in Siberia” brings 15 participants from Germany to Western Siberia where we will, together with Russian students, visit memorials and meet local historians and activists.

What is this project about?

Our project strives to establish new forms of civil society cooperation by jointly exploring the issues of remembrance and responsibility and their impact on shaping our present and future. Visiting the actual sites of crimes committed under Stalinist totalitarianism bridges the gap between theoretical knowledge and practical experience. It serves to raise the participants’ awareness of forced labour, expulsion and the consequences of political dissent. Keeping the examples of German practices of commemoration in mind, the excursion furthermore stimulates to think about possible forms of coming to terms with the past – or repressing it. Highlighting the differences and similarities of Russian and German culture of remembrance invites participants to reflect upon whether change and further development of commemorative practices is possible and desirable, and how a sustainable dialogue of communities of remembrance could be achieved.

What will we do?

We start with a kick-off seminar in Berlin in June 2017 (9-11), where German participants have the chance to get to know each other and learn more about Stalinist repressions and its perception in today’s Russia. We will then use our 12-day excursion to Siberia (July 3-14) to travel around the areas of Chanty-Mansiysk, Surgut and Tobolsk, visiting memorials and getting in touch with local experts. The project will be concluded with a panel in Berlin (autumn 2017), during which we will present the excursion brochure that contains the main impressions and findings from our journey.

Who can apply?

Students or young professionals

·   between the age of 18 and 35 and fluent in English

·   showing a track record that demonstrates your interest in commemorative culture, the Russian and/or German totalitarian past, or Russian-German relations;

·   willing to host a co-participant during the Berlin kick-off workshop in case you are from Berlin

Next steps: How to apply?

Find out more detailed information on the exchange and the application process, which ends on 7 May 2017, in our Call for Application.