Contested Histories in Public Spaces: Principles, Processes, Best Practices





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Feb 05, 2021
by IHJR, IBA and Salzburg Global Seminar
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Contested Histories in Public Spaces: Principles, Processes, Best Practices

Join the virtual launch of landmark publication, produced in cooperation between Salzburg Global Seminar, the Institute for Historical Justice and Reconciliation and the International Bar Association

The virtual launch of the eBook Contested Histories in Public Spaces: Principles, Processes, Best Practices will be held on Thursday, February 11 (18:00 – 19:00 CET).

The publication is the first volume of case studies to be produced through Contested Histories in Public Spaces, a multi-year initiative intended to address controversies over statues, memorials, street names and other representations of disputed historical legacies in public spaces. It is a joint project between the Institute for Historical Justice and Reconciliation (IHJR), the International Bar Association and Salzburg Global Seminar. The IHJR was founded at Salzburg Global Seminar and is now a research center at EuroClio.

The initiative seeks to provide decision-makers, policy planners, educators, and other stakeholders with a set of case studies, best practices and guidelines for addressing historical contestations in an effective and responsible manner. As of February 2021, the initiative has identified more than 230 cases of contested histories in public spaces.

The landmark publication is intended for policymakers confronting controversies over historical legacies in public spaces like statues, memorials and street names. It presents ten case studies and discusses their significance, interpretations and possible remedies – placarding, resignification and repurposing, to relocation, removal, or destruction. Iconic examples are disputes over Christopher Columbus, Edward Colston, Robert E Lee, and Cecil Rhodes, among others.

The webinar will be chaired by Timothy W Ryback, Director and Co-founder, Institute for Historical Justice and Reconciliation. Opening and introductory remarks will be provided by Mark Ellis, Executive Director of the International Bar Association, and Baroness Usha Prashar, CBE, PC, a crossbench member of the House of Lords, and chair of the Contested Histories Task Force, with closing remarks by Benjamin Glahn, Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Salzburg Global Seminar.

Participants will hear from the volumes’ co-editors, along with practitioners and scholars. Speakers will include His Excellency Lamberto Zannier, former OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities; Harriet Senie, member of the New York City Mayoral Advisory Commission on City Art, Monuments and Markers; Shahid Vawda, Professor of African and Gender Studies, University of Cape Town; Lecia Brooks, Chief of Staff, Southern Poverty Law Center; Joanna Burch-Brown, Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at University of Bristol, and commissioner for the "We Are Bristol" History Commission (Bristol), Marti Burgess, lawyer and Chair of Black South West Networkl and Klaus Kraatz, Vice-Chair of the IBA's Art, Cultural Institutions and Heritage Law Committee.

Register for the book launch webinar here: