The second part of the GEI’s seminar for textbook authors took place in Tirana on 20 and 21 September. While the seminar in Braunschweig was held in English and the institute‘s library was on hand for the participants, the seminar in Tirana could be accessed by a larger number of textbook authors, history teachers and representatives of education ministries and publishing houses from Albania, Kosovo, Serbia and Montenegro.
Donika Xhemajli gave an interactive presentation on why sources are vital for textbooks and compared Kosovar books with some from the United Kingdom. She also presented to the participants the unit on the assassination of Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo in 1914 which is part of new teaching materials produced by Euroclio and entitled ‚Once upon a time‘, http://www.euroclio.eu/new/index.php/publications/educational-material-mainmenu-391 In small groups, participants took on the roles of ‘prosecutors’ and ‘defenders’ and were called upon to judge whether the assassin, Gavrilo Princip, was a hero or a criminal. After this, they were asked to create a concept for a memorial to the event. They were provided with a range of sources which illuminated the event from different perspectives.
After a lively discussion on the interpretation of the assassination and on difficulties around producing textbooks with more primary sources and less text by authors, participants worked in small groups to create an exemplary text on WWI, using sources which can be found online in digitalised form. The seminar schedule included ample time for discussion, to which participants from the Braunschweig seminar also contributed.
Photo by Muhamed Jashari