On May 8 at 11:00, on the eve of the 75th anniversary of the victory over Nazi Germany in WWII, the Valdai Discussion Club held an online presentation of its new report, titled “Forgive but Not Forget? The Image of War in Culture and Historical Memory”.
The Valdai Club continues the theme of understanding the events and results of the Second World War. A new report has developed the theme of the Valdai Club discussion titled “Ideological Constructs of World War II in Contemporary Discourse”, which took place in April.
In the context of the coronavirus pandemic, when the Victory Parade on Red Square, one of the most significant and symbolic events of the year in Russia and the world, was postponed, questions related to historical memory and its impact on modern life are more relevant than ever. At the international level, the convergence of historical narratives seems to be the key to cooperation and overcoming negative stereotypes in relations between states. Russian leader Vladimir Putin has repeatedly spoken about the historical reconciliation of Russia and Germany as the most important political and social achievement in relations between the two states.
The authors of the report focused their analysis on two main aspects related to historical memory – the image of war in the modern cultural space and the features of the formation of historical memory in German society. How does historical memory affect international relations? What are the features of the formation of the historical memory of the war in Russia and Germany? How has it changed over time? Participants of the meeting answered these and many other questions.
Mikhail Shvydkoy, Special Representative of the President of the Russian Federation for International Cultural Cooperation, Member of the Board of Trustees of the German-Russian Forum;
Andrey Bystritskiy, Chairman of the Board of the Foundation for Development and Support of the Valdai Discussion Club;
Mikhail Myagkov, Scientific Director of the Russian Military Historical Society;
Konstantin Pakhalyuk, member of the Russian Association of Historians of the First World War, co-author of the report;
Matthias Uhl, Researcher at the German Historical Institute in Moscow, co-author of the report;
Alexey Miller, Professor, European University at St. Petersburg.
Oleg Barabanov, programme director of the Valdai Discussion Club
Working languages: Russian, English.