- This event has ended.
Ian Buruma (Paul Williams Professor of Human Rights, Democracy, and Journalism, Bard College)
Buruma will discuss how history affects contemporary politics, focusing on memories of World War II. Scholars have written extensively about the ways in which the Germans and Japanese have dealt with their darkest years. Less attention has been paid to how history is remembered on the other side, in countries that were the victims of Nazi or fascist powers, or in countries that were victorious. The problems of dealing incompletely or dishonestly with a tainted past are well known. Buruma will focus instead on the negative effects of recalling only victimhood or triumph. The discussion will be global in scope, encompassing examples in Asia, Europe, and the United States.