Comments and Reviews

Teaching the Violent Past

What people are saying about Teaching the Violent Past...

Advance Praise for the Book

"For anyone interested in transitional justice, national reconstruction after mass violence, or multicultural politics, Teaching the Violent Past is a source of insight and wisdom, grounded in compelling case studies of the struggles over teaching history in Germany, Japan, Canada, Spain, Northern Ireland, and Guatemala. It includes probing chapters examining ongoing debates over how Russia, North and South Korea, India and Pakistan should teach their young about the past so that neither national pride nor psychic wounds ends up fueling new violent conflicts. This book offers vital examples of efforts to engage students in critical confrontations with the complexity of the past."
—Martha Minow, Harvard Law School and author of Between Vengeance and Forgiveness: Facing History After Genocide and Mass Violence

"This outstanding new book provides the kind of concrete empirical detail so lacking in studies of political ethics. The authors reveal the role of history education as a means of supporting reconciliation and, importantly, undermining it. Cole's introductory essay locates the project in the multiple discourses to which this book will contribute, giving the volume conceptual and analytical coherence. Anyone interested in reconciliation, conflict resolution, and the relationship of politics to history education should own this book."
—Anthony F Lang, Jr., University of St. Andrews

"Cole provides an indispensable set of readings for anyone interested in learning how teaching history in the schools relates to healing after violence. Through their gathered chapters, the authors show how any nation's future relates to what the next generation learns about its past. Cole's collection offers a powerful synthesis of multi-national points of view, which, taken together, show how schools can reshape collective national identities and influence reconciliation."
—Sarah Warshauer Freedman, University of California at Berkeley

"Can high school history texts "facilitate nonviolent coexistence among people divided by the memory of pain and death"? These case studies from ten countries are rich in hopeful, cautious, mixed answers. High school history teachers should take courage from this book, for theirs is a mission not often publicly celebrated: their part in the healing of the wounds in our body politic. No country should boast that it has no such wounds."
—Donald W. Shriver, Jr., President Emeritus, Union Theological Seminary, and author of Honest Patriots: Loving A Country Enough to Remember Its Misdeeds

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Carnegie Council Announces the Publication of "Teaching the Violent Past"
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