Imre Kertész Kolleg Jena

Cultures of History Forum

Installation Freedom as Balancing Act, Vabamu

Exhibiting 20th Century History

A Museum of Memories: The New ‘Vabamu’ in Tallinn

Heiko Pääbo / Eva-Clarita Pettai ·


A new generation of historians and curators have taken over the former Museum of Occupations in Tallinn, Estonia. They renamed the museum and opened a permanent exhibition built less on historical facts than on 'fragments of memory'. Technologically savvy, it challenges not only previous ways of representing Estonia's history of occupations, but also more traditional modes of presenting history in the museum. How this is done and whether it is convincing is discussed in this article.

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Racism Exhibtion: Meta-reflections on how to display racism

Exhibiting 20th Century History

The German Hygiene Museum’s Exhibition ‘Racism. The Invention of Human Races’

Verena Meier ·


Against the backdrop of rampant racism and xenophobia in both public life and the social media, the 'Racism'-exhibition in Dresden came at the right time. It gave interesting insights into how 'race' as a category was invented as well as into the Hygiene Museum's own history in promoting racialized thinking. The article provides a critical review of the exhibition and its uses of media, interventions and other didactic tools in presenting a most sensitive issue.

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Institute of National Rememberance (IPN), Warsaw

Politics of History

The Polish ‘Holocaust Law’ revisited

The Devastating Effects of Prejudice-Mongering

Marta Bucholc, Maciej Komornik ·

One year after the Polish parliament adopted an amendment that would criminalize certain statements about Polish involvement in the Holocaust, this article revisits both the original amendment and the political developments since. It argues that allthough the law was eventually changed to calm down concerns about freedom of speech, sanctions still exist and their longer-term effects on Polish society and public discourse are daunting.

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