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Körber History Forum – Experts providing food for thought

“The Middle East has always been an arena for rivalry”

Past, present and future challenges of the Middle East will be a key topic at this year’s Körber History Forum. Bernd Vogenbeck, Körber-Stiftung, spoke with acclaimed British historian James Barr about how internal and external designs clashed in the region and continue to generate tensions today.

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A clash of interpretations over World War Two history

In a speech delivered at an informal CIS meeting in St. Petersburg in December 2019, remarks made by Russian President Vladimir Putin manoeuvred Poland into a position of complicity in the outbreak of the Second World War. The ensuing international outcry went beyond a contained discord in Russian-Polish relations. Claudia Weber, expert in Eastern European History, spoke with Bernd Vogenbeck, Körber-Stiftung, about the fallout of this attempt to rewrite history.

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Europe and Ukraine

In mid-October 2019, the Körber History Reflection Group convened in the western Ukrainian city of Lviv, bringing together an international circle of experts and decision-makers to discuss and debate the current political implications of Eastern Central Europe’s history. In his opening keynote the publicist and historian of East Central Europe, Karl Schlögel, sets out how the past and present of Ukraine are both inspiration and obligation to European society.

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The time of symbolic gestures is over

On the occasion of the 80th anniversary of Germany’s attack on Poland on 1 September, the historian Krzysztof Ruchniewicz spoke with Bernd Vogenbeck, Körber-Stiftung, about historic perceptions of the Second World War in Poland and Germany as well as the challenges posed by them for German-Polish understanding and dialogue.

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Strong leaders or good governance?

What drives current politics? Principles of democratic rule are being challenged, and authoritarian leadership styles are gaining greater attention. Körber History Forum speaker and Oxford historian Archie Brown explains why “strong leaders” are a myth and why simple answers are misleading politics.

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EU membership has brought stability and security

Fifteen years ago, the former Soviet Republics Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania joined the European Union. How can the most recent development of the Baltics be characterised and what significance does the region have for the European Union? The Estonian-Canadian political scientist Andres Kasekamp explains.

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The Power of Manipulation

The power of manipulation and dealing with propaganda and ‘fake news‘ in past and present will be one of the topics of the Körber History Forum 2019. Panellist and historian Jo Fox shared her insight into current challenges.

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Divisive memory

On November 11th, 2018, Poland commemorated regaining its statehood 100 years ago. The central Independence Day march in Warsaw highlighted deep social and political divisions between the government and opposition, who took issue with the involvement of far-right nationalist groups. The historian Andrzej Nowak talks about this year’s celebrations.

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Migration: a contentious issue

What are the reservations expressed about immigration in the EU based on, and how have fears about integration been approached throughout history? On the sidelines of the Körber History Forum 2018, historian Philipp Ther, from the University of Vienna, and Gergely Prőhle, Hungary’s former ambassador in Berlin, explain their positions in the debate.

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Read opinion of Gergely Prőhle

Empire 2.0? Britain argues over its colonial past

Britain's imperial past was one of the  topics of the Körber History Forum 2018 in Berlin. In an interview with the Körber Foundation, Gurminder K. Bhambra, Professor of Postcolonial and Decolonial Studies at the University of Sussex, explained what the legacy of the Empire means for Britain today.

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