In this podcast, Tatiana Milko explains how ‘shared history’ techniques pioneered in Cyprus, could help to defuse tensions elsewhere in Europe.
The Head of the History Education Unit believes that the Council of Europe’s experience in Cyprus shows that “history in the 21st century can be used as a tool when bringing people together, even in difficult and sensitive situations.”
For a decade, the organisation has led teacher training seminars and workshops on the divided island, with the aim of developing a balanced approach to the nation’s history.
This resulted in a new strategic approach to history entitled ‘A Look At Our Past,’ which is now used in all Cypriot schools. It emphasises non-political history, focussing on ‘meeting-points of cultures’ between Cypriots from Greek and Turkish communities.
“Building confidence and trust starts from shared histories,” Milko adds. “Cyprus is a multi-communal space. People have been living together for ages and then the conflict came.
“History became one of our tools to bring these people together and start reflecting on the shared histories of Cyprus.”
On May 5, the History Education Unit will launch a 900-page electronic book for the teaching and learning of history.
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