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Inauguration of the official Master in Contemporary History and Current World of the University of Barcelona by María Sierra

Inauguration of the official Master in Contemporary History and Current World of the University of Barcelona by María Sierra

Our colleague María Sierra delivered a conference on “The Roma genocide under the Nazism: History and Memory” on October 7, 2021 as the official inauguration of the Master in Contemporary History and Current World organised by the University of Barcelona.

 34._Foto_4.jpegThe aim of the master’s degree is to train students and professionals interested in deepening their knowledge of the history and social and political dynamics of the 19th and 20th centuries, in order to help them understand the complexity of today’s world. In this line, the conference by María Sierra fitted perfectly with the teaching programme and goal of the master’s degree.

The inauguration had important relevance to the project. In the one side, it meant the visibility of one part of the Roma history in an official institution such as the University of Barcelona. For the first time, the official master has been inaugurated by a topic focused on the history of the Roma and Sinti. On the other side, the conference was based on History and Memory and specifically on the memories of Philomena Franz as an example to tell and explain the Roma and Sinti genocide under the Nazism and as a claim to a place in European memory for the Roma people.34._Foto_6.jpeg

The conference was a completely success, not only by the number of attendees but also by the dialogue produced at the end of the conference between the guest lecture and the students and professors present. Events like this contribute to place Roma (Roma history) in the public space, to show its cultural diversity and to reflect that Romani people considered continuously as outsiders were always insiders and part of the European society and culture. The conference invited the public to challenge their own stereotypes against Roma people, to accept the diversity and to have a critical reflection on otherness.


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