United or Divided in Diversity?
From 2 - 8 October 2016, twenty-four winners of EUSTORY history competitions from sixteen nations gathered in Tbilisi, Georgia, to discuss and reflect on the concepts of nationality, identity and Europe.
They were dealing intensively and across borders with the idea of identity and nationalism in Europe: Is there still a sufficient basis of shared values and feelings of togetherness in Europe to tackle the current crises?
In preparation for their trip, the young Europeans had been working on the seminar topic for several weeks on the "EUSTORY History Campus" in closed working groups.
Once they got to Tbilisi, the participants explored the Georgian capital, learned about Georgia's Soviet past and interviewed Georgian intellectuals about their home country. Furthermore, the participants were introduced to the concept of National Museums by looking at current exhibitions with the General Director of the Georgian National Museum, Prof. David Lordkipanidze. Moreover they met Georgian guests having different backgrounds and professions to learn more about Georgia and its people as well as nationalism and identities.
The group also visited the “European High School” of Tbilisi and had a chance to meet Georgian students with whom they discussed the difficulties in teaching and understanding history in an “objective” way. The students sounded out common grounds as well as contrary convictions when discussing their understanding of »identity«. However, they all agreed that continuing a dialogue about these varying conceptions is of the utmost importance. Because in the end, "(…) the diversity is what unites us", Elīna Jātniece (18) from Latvia stated.
The Closing Ceremony took place at the Georgian National Museum. The participants presented the results of their national competition entries and talked about their experiences during the seminar. “This camp has influenced me a lot. I have learnt that there are multiple perspectives and views, and they can all be right depending from where you look. This was one of the best experiences in my life”, said Pablo, a Spanish prize winner.