Friday, April 22, 2011

Go On! "Remembering Guantánamo"

(Go On! is an occasional item on symposia and other events of interest)

The next phase of the Guantánamo Public Memory Project, entitled "Remembering Guantanamo," will convene a working group and symposium April 28-29 at Columbia University.

According to the project's theme statement:

To remember Guantánamo is not to place it in the past. The Administration's recent decisions this week to uphold military tribunals confirmed that the detention facilities will remain open, its prisoners held there indefinitely. Gitmo is not behind us – but it does have a past, one that can provide critical perspective on what should happen now. How did we get here? How can looking at Guantánamo's long history of use and reuse help us debate and shape what will happen next? How can we keep the story of Guantánamo and the questions it raises in the public eye?

“Remembering Guantánamo” will bring together a working group of historians, advocates, museum professionals, and others to explore 1) Guantánamo Bay as a
“state of exception” in American politics and political culture; and 2) strategies for building public awareness of Guantánamo’s century-long history – its exceptional and commonplace uses and re-uses – to inspire citizen participation in what happens there next.

Speakers will include:
  • Justice Albie Sachs, an anti-apartheid activist and South African Constitutional Court Justice. (Prior coverage here).
  • Ruti Teitel, New York Law School (right).
  • Aryeh Neier, a founder of Human Rights Watch, former Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union, and now President of the Open Society Foundations.
  • Elena Razlogova, Concordia University (below right).

The symposium is sponsored by the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience, the Columbia University Institute for the Study of Human Rights, the Columbia University Seminar on History, Redress, and Reconciliation, and the Columbia Oral History Research Office. For more information, see here and here. The full agenda is available here.

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