European history as a common heritage in the Old Continent: the Council of Europe launches on "Europe Day" the first inter-active e-book on "Shared histories for a Europe without dividing lines".
At a time when many European countries are scaling down or threatening to cut the teaching of European history, the Council of Europe has developed a comprehensive pan-European tool that covers four main themes:
• The Impact of the Industrial Revolution;
• The Development of Education;
• Human Rights as reflected in the History of Art;
• Europe and the World.
Quote for the media:
The Director General of Democracy of the Council of Europe Snežana Samardžić-Marković said: ‘Shared histories can help stop the misuse, appropriation and nationalisation of history, by giving pupils and students both the knowledge and analytical tools they need to see through manipulation. In our multicultural societies, particularly at a time of economic crisis and insecurity, the competences for intercultural dialogue and understanding taught through shared histories are vital. Ultimately, this type of education plays a crucial role in building and maintaining Europe’s democratic culture.’
The Council of Europe fosters cultural diversity (for reference, 60th anniversary of the European Cultural Convention) and pays particular attention to post-conflict areas, working on the need to overcome stereotypes and to build a shared narrative, which includes different perspectives.
For example, within the "Shared Histories" project, teaching material on Cypriot history has been prepared by educators working across the divide for the first time: A Look at our Past.