7 December 1992

Doc. 6723

MOTION FOR A RECOMMENDATION

on history in Europe

presented by Mr de PUIG

and others


1.       Knowledge of history, as well as of value as an academic discipline, is also an essential element for the study and understanding of the present and for the preparation and shaping of the future.

2.       A better knowledge of Europe's past is one of the foundations on which European awareness and the idea of European unity can be built up.

3.       As a result of the variety of Europe's cultures and the diversity of possible interpretations of history and historical events, it seems very difficult to define a single, complete history of Europe capable of overriding the subjective nature of national, regional and local history. Furthermore, every attempt to do so has ended in failure.

4.       History has to be constantly reappraised. However, the new situation in Europe as a whole, the specific need in Central and Eastern Europe for a new, non-dogmatic approach to history, the lack of knowledge in Western Europe of the history and culture of the peoples of Central and Eastern Europe and the resurgence virtually everywhere of nationalism and intolerance make an updating of history teaching in Europe vital and urgent.

5.       The Assembly welcomes the work of the Council of Europe in this field and the initiatives taken to increase contact and co-operation among history teachers and historians.

6.       It consequently recommends that the Committee of Ministers:

i.       promote, under the auspices of the Council of Europe:

a.       a definition of the approaches to history teaching in Europe;

b.       the preparation of material for the teaching and illustration of European history;

c.       the training of teachers and teacher trainers in the field of European history, particular attention being paid to the specific problems of the countries of Central and Eastern Europe;

ii.       set in motion a series of seminars with historians on the history of Europe against the background of the history of humankind.

Signed:       de Puig, Cuců, Roman, de Decker, Moya, Pahtas, ÷zver, Foschi, Roseta, L. Fischer, Finsberg, Tummers, Lopez Henares.