NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ974023
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Aug
Pages: 33
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0018-2680
Disarming Hatred: History Education, National Memories, and Franco-German Reconciliation from World War I to the Cold War
Siegel, Mona; Harjes, Kirsten
History of Education Quarterly, v52 n3 p370-402 Aug 2012
On May 4, 2006, French and German cultural ministers announced the publication of "Histoire/Geschichte", the world's first secondary school history textbook produced jointly by two countries. Authored by a team of French and German historians and published simultaneously in both languages, the book's release drew considerable public attention. French and German heads-of-state readily pointed to the joint history textbook as a shining example of the close and positive relations between their two countries, while their governments heralded the book for "symbolically sealing Franco-German reconciliation." Franco-German textbook reform provides one of the most successful historical models of cultural diplomacy and peace education worldwide; yet, among scholars and education reformers its history is little known and the reasons for its success are even less understood. Historians of education in both countries have highlighted instead the active role that educators historically played in reinforcing nationalist sentiment, whether attached to a republican political project, in the case of France, or an imperial or fascist one, in the case of Germany. In this article, the authors talk about history education, national memories, and Franco-German reconciliation from world war I to the cold war. They argue that the eventual fruits of Franco-German textbook reform were more a product of cultural negotiation than they were of objective historical examination, and they were predicated on historians' and teachers' tacit willingness to encourage both nations to "forget" some of the most contentious issues in their shared past. (Contains 143 footnotes.)
Wiley-Blackwell. 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Tel: 800-835-6770; Tel: 781-388-8598; Fax: 781-388-8232; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: France; Germany