An exhibition on the history of history education in the Council of Europe
This exhibition draws a parallel between the institutional history of the Council of Europe, its milestones and achievements in history education and the major events of the 20th and 21st centuries. It also shows the efforts of the Counccil of Europe, the only international organisation to have run programmes in this area since 1949, to promote quality history education. The production of the exhibition was coordinated by the History Education Division in the Council of Europe
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A brochure was designed to guide you through the various timelines presented, and to provide a deeper understanding of the links between international history, the construction of Europe and the teaching of history at the Council of Europe.
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Three main periods for history education in the Council of Europe
Part One: The establishment of initial European co-operation activities in the area of history teaching (1949-1962)
In the months following the creation of the Council of Europe in 1949, a recommendation is adopted by the Consultative Assembly of the Council of Europe (now the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe), encouraging the 10 founding member states to prepare a series of impartial books dealing with geography and history. Successive European conferences on the revision of history textbooks highlight the bonds of solidarity that exist between European peoples, a first step towards close international co-operation.
Part Two: Increasingly structured co-operation on history teaching (1962-1990)
The period from the early 1960s until the end of the Cold War is a fertile but turbulent one for cultural co-operation and history teaching at the Council of Europe. It begins with the creation of the Council for Cultural Co-operation, a result of the conferences launched in the 1950s and the driving force behind the Council of Europe's work in education and culture. Several symposiums on secondary education are held, and new recommendations and resolutions from the Committee of Ministers and the Parliamentary Assembly adopted. Another feature of this period is growing co-operation with civil society.
Part 3: Teaching history in a pan-European Council of Europe (1990 to the present)
The period from 1990 to the present day sees the Council of Europe gain increasing prominence, as it becomes the first pan-European organisation to embrace a new dimension of international relations. Over the years, a series of intergovernmental projects on history teaching leads to a number of flagship recommendations. The creation of the Observatory on History Teaching in Europe as an enlarged partial agreement of the Council of Europe in 2020 opens up new opportunities and provides an academic underpinning to debates around history teaching.