With over 275 members in more than 65 countries, the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience offers unprecedented access to a wide range of sites, experts and methodologies dedicated to galvanizing the past for a more equitable future. Launched in 2019, our monthly online learning series, Conscience Matters, brings together members, Coalition staff and special guests to probe pressing issues facing Sites of Conscience today and showcase innovative and effective strategies to help members energize their audiences and play a leading role in our global movement for memory.
All sessions are free for members; non-members may attend select sessions for a fee.
Invisible No More: LGBTQI+ Programming
January 17, 2019
Around the globe, there is an increased interest in foregrounding the stories of the LGBTQI+ community, but – with relatively few models available – often little understanding of how this can best be done. This webinar will bring together Coalition members onePulse Foundation (USA) and the Memorial Museum of Dominican Resistance as well as the Gay and Lesbian Archive in Action (South Africa) to shed light on this vital topic – providing creative examples of LGBTQI+ programming from different regions, offering strategies for creating physical sites, and sharing challenges and successes in making LGBTQI+ issues more visible and relevant.
February 14-15, 2019
Over one billion unique devices connect to Wikimedia projects every month. For cultural organizations, Wikipedia – which is entirely free and highly accessible – is a particularly powerful resource. In February, we welcome Luisina Ferrante, Coordinator of the Human Rights Wiki Project, to speak about the movement for free knowledge and offer fresh strategies for how Sites of Conscience can create the most engaging entries and maximize their exposure on the site. Sessions will be offered in English and Spanish.
Women of Conscience: From Trauma to Transformation (Members Only)
March 14, 2019
Women have long been incarcerated alongside men, and yet their experiences of it have been far less explored or, often, remain entirely unknown. Held in recognition of International Women’s Day, this webinar will bring together three Sites of Conscience working to change this by foregrounding the history of women’s imprisonment and the ways in which women’s individual trauma has led to reconciliation, healing and advocacy.
Lebo Marishane will join us from Constitution Hill in South Africa, a former prison and military fort that bears testament to South Africa’s turbulent past. Fatna al Bouih will be speaking from Casa Memoire in Morocco on her own incarceration and political activism. Maria Jose Kahn will share details from Museo Sitio de Memoria – ESMA‘s new Coalition-sponsored exhibit on the experiences of female detainees under the Argentinian dictatorship.
While comparing lessons learned in creating platforms for women’s stories of incarceration, the panel will also provide Coalition members useful strategies for harnessing the power of place – and the power of women – to build stronger, more resilient communities.
To register, click here.
The Dynamics of Dialogue (Members Only)
April 18, 2019
Contentious topics are nothing new to Sites of Conscience, but learning how to engage visitors and other audiences in meaningful conversations about them can be difficult. In this session, the Coalition’s Methodology and Practice team will equip members with the tools they need to navigate divisive histories – challenging visitors’ preconceptions, fostering dialogue and sparking civic action that enables the past to activate the future.
To register, click here.
Collecting The Now (Members Only)
May 16, 2019 – 10:00 AM (NY-EST)
Sites of Conscience are perfectly positioned to document, collect and share events as they unfold – all crucial activities in a world where repression and civil and human rights abuses are on the rise. Whether focusing on preserving artifacts for museum exhibitions or collecting and sharing personal narratives, museums and other cultural institutions must grapple with a range of complicated questions along the way, among them: How do organizations decide what to preserve? How do they leverage collections so they can bridge differences in their communities? And how do they build and offer access to collections in settings where security is a concern?
This webinar will offer solutions to these and other questions by examining different types of contemporary collecting around civil rights, community-based activismand truth and reconciliation efforts. Facilitated by Linda Norris, the Coalition’s Global Programs Director, the session will welcome Gwen Moore, a historian from the Missouri History Museum, who helps oversee the Ferguson Collecting Initiative, which collects artifacts related to the officer-involved shooting of Michael Brown, an African American teenager, whose death in 2014 catalyzed the Black Lives Matter movement. Sharon Smith, also from the Missouri History Museum, will share her experiences as Curator of the museum’s LGBTQI collection. Additionally, Amina Krvavac, the Director of the War Childhood Museum, will discuss her work collecting personal belongings and stories from individuals whose childhoods were affected by war. As always, we encourage dialogue and discussion among presenters and attendees in the webinar.
To register, click here.
Open House at the Coalition (Members Only)
June 20, 2019
In the past year alone, dozens of new Sites of Conscience have joined the Coalition from all parts of the globe. With each new member, our extraordinary network grows deeper and stronger. In this session, members can hear from Coalition staff about exciting developments, discover new Coalition resources and learn more about our methodology. Ideal for members both new and long-standing, the session will also provide an opportunity for members to ask questions of staff and share their suggestions. Sessions will be offered in English and Spanish.
To join us for the English session on June 20th at 9am EST, click here.
Engaging Exhibit Labels (Members Only)
July 18, 2019 – 10:00am (EST-NY)
“What Are We Waiting For?” Live Stream from American Association of State and Local History’s Annual Meeting
August 28-31, 2019
How Sites of Conscience Are Responding to Increasingly Partisan and Repressive Administrations
September 19, 2019 – 11:00 AM (São Paulo)/ 10:00 AM (NY-EST)
Sites of Conscience interpret history, stimulate dialogue on pressing social issues, and promote justice and universal cultures of human rights. What happens when these objectives are threatened by partisan political agendas or repressive local or national administrations? As extremist rhetoric and policies take hold around the world, Coalition members are increasingly expressing concerns about censorship, politically motivated revisionism, funding cuts, and personal and institutional safety.
Our next Conscience Matters webinar on September 19th at 11:00 am (São Paulo)/10:00 am (New York)/5:00pm (Moscow), led by Gegê Leme Joseph, Regional Program Manager for Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, will allow our members and participants to explore these challenges and begin to identify potential solutions. The following three members will present their experiences during the webinar: Memoria Abierta from Argentina, Memorial da Resistência from Brazil and Memorial International from Russia.
To register, click here
Rethinking Columbus: On Symbolic Reparations and Indigenous Histories
October 10, 2019 – 10:00 AM (NY-EST)
Throughout much of North and South America, there are national holidays marking Christopher Columbus’s so-called “discovery” of multiple countries, holidays that marginalize, if not effectively erase, the fact that indigenous people inhabited those lands long before his arrival. Over the past three decades, there has been a growing movement to change this – by either re-naming Columbus Day as Indigenous People’s Day or by celebrating indigenous histories in another capacity altogether. How do symbolic reparations such as holidays promote reconciliation and address Native American erasure? What is to be learned from on the ground efforts of activists and allies in promoting changes in this narrative? Join Sarah Pharaon, Senior Director of Methodology and Practice, along with Sites of Conscience guests, located in two U.S. states where “Columbus Day” has been reoriented to honor indigenous people.
Evaluating Programs for the Greatest Impact
November 21, 2019 – 9:00 AM (NY-EST)
Effective evaluation systems are crucial to an organization’s mission and sustainability. In this session, Gegê Leme Joseph, the Regional Manager for Latin America, the Caribbean, and Africa, will be joined by two guests to showcase a variety of program evaluation methods employed by Coalition members. This webinar will focus on creating relevant and impactful cultural and memorialization programs. The session will be useful to Sites of Conscience seeking to improve not only their programmatic processes but also those related to funding and grant-reporting.
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