Among the most daunting challenges facing societies in post-conflict transition is what to do with the burden of gross violations of human rights committed during the conflict. Numerous societies have sought to ignore such atrocities – to dig a hole and bury the past – only to be confronted by their continual return, in the form of grievance and re-escalation into hostilities. Long after a formal peace has been declared, victims may feel the war still rages – relentless in its demand for answers, in the damage caused, in the absence of acknowledgement, accountability, reparation, or even change.
Dealing with the Past (DwP) comprises a suite of creative strategies for shifting this – measures that can provide victims with comfort, some satisfaction, and sometimes even repair; initiatives that tackle perpetrators and advance the rule of law; ways of overhauling legislation and reforming public institutions, and growing a culture of democratic governance; projects capable of generating a shared understanding of the abuses and the history in which they occurred; occasions for celebrating the life that remains, with all its learnings, among those who have survived.
DwP is an approach to transformation that can, at best, enable sustainable transition out of entrenched patterns of violence and violation. Both an introduction to core concepts and comparative in its orientation, this course addresses the practicalities – the nuts-and-bolts – of making DwP work.
- Participation in weekly online seminars (Wednesday, 11h00 CET, for 90 mins, February 12 to March 25)
- Technical check on February 5 at 11h00 CET
- Watching of pre-recorded lecture (in your own time)
- Response (one-page maximum) to the theme designated each week (Weeks 2 to 5)
- Co-ordination and integration of writings into a Powerpoint presentation applying your learnings to one context of you choice.
- Around 3 - 5 hours per week, for 7 weeks