Arbeitsbereich Geschichtsdidaktik / History Education, Universität Hamburg

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Neuer Handbuchbeitrag

18. April 2021 Andreas Körber Keine Kommentare

gera­de erschienen:

Kör­ber, Andre­as (2021): Kom­pe­tenz­mo­del­le in der Geschichts­di­dak­tik. In: <a href=“https://link.springer.com/referencework/10.1007/978 – 3‑658 – 29673‑5#toc”>Georg Wei­ße­no und Béa­tri­ce Zieg­ler (Hg.): Hand­buch Geschichts- und Poli­tik­di­dak­tik. Wies­ba­den: Sprin­ger VS</a>, S. 1 – 4 (online-first). DOI: 10.1007/978 – 3‑658 – 29673-5_1‑1; Online ver­füg­bar unter <a href=“https://link.springer.com/content/pdf/10.1007%2F978‑3 – 658-29673 – 5_1‑1.pdf”>https://link.springer.com/content/pdf/10.1007%2F978‑3 – 658-29673 – 5_1‑1.pdf</a>

Neuerscheinung

09. April 2021 Andreas Körber Keine Kommentare

Kör­ber, Andre­as (2021): Chro­no­lo­gie ja – aber anders. Plä­doy­er für einen nicht-chro­no­lo­gi­schen Geschichts­un­ter­richt im Inter­es­se der Chro­no­lo­gie. In: <a href=“https://wochenschau-verlag.de/Brennpunkte-heutigen-Geschichtsunterrichts/41236”>Lars Dei­le, Peter Rie­del und Jörg van Nor­den (Hg.): Brenn­punk­te heu­ti­gen Geschichts­un­ter­richts. Joa­chim Roh­lfes zum 90. Geburts­tag. Frank­furt am Main: Wochen­schau Ver­lag, ISBN 978−3−7344−1235−6 </​a>, S. 53 – 63.

Lehrerfortbildung in Brixen (Südtirol, Italien)

28. Oktober 2019 Andreas Körber Keine Kommentare

Anni­ka Stork und Andre­as Kör­ber haben vom 23. bis 24. Okto­ber 2019 eine Leh­rer­fort­bil­dung zum The­ma “His­to­ri­sches Ler­nen aus neu­en Blick­win­keln” für Lehr­per­so­nen der Mit­tel- und Ober­schu­le sowie der Berufs­bil­dung auf Ein­la­dung der Deut­schen Bil­dungs­ver­wal­tung Bozen an der Mit­tel­schu­le “Micha­el Pacher” in Bri­xen gehal­ten. Vgl. http://​www​.pro​vinz​.bz​.it/​b​i​l​d​u​n​g​-​s​p​r​a​c​h​e​/​d​i​d​a​k​t​i​k​-​b​e​r​a​t​u​n​g​/​d​o​w​n​l​o​a​d​s​/​L​P​2​0​1​9​_​2​0​2​0​_​w​w​w​(​1​)​.​pdf, S. 146.

Neuer Beitrag zur Kompetenzorientierung im Geschichtsunterricht

06. Februar 2019 Andreas Körber Keine Kommentare

Am 20. Febru­ar ist der fol­gen­de Band erschie­nen: “Wal­traud Schrei­ber, Béa­tri­ce Zieg­ler, Chris­toph Küh­ber­ger (Hrsg.): Geschichts­di­dak­ti­scher Zwi­schen­halt. Bei­trä­ge aus der Tagung »Kom­pe­tent machen für ein Leben in, mit und durch Geschich­te« in Eich­stätt vom Novem­ber 2017. Müns­ter u.a.: Wax­mann, 2019.”
Schreiber/Ziegler/Kühberger 2019

Dar­in fin­det sich auch fol­gen­der Beitrag:
Kör­ber, Andre­as (2019): “Kom­pe­ten­zen his­to­ri­schen Den­kens – Bestands­auf­nah­me nach zehn Jah­ren” (S. 71 – 87)

Neues zum Mittelalterbegriff

29. Dezember 2018 Andreas Körber Keine Kommentare

In der letz­ten Woche erschien in der FAZ (Online) ein Arti­kel des Müns­te­ra­ner Islam­wis­sen­schaft­lers und Ara­bis­ten Tho­mas Bau­er, in wel­chem er den Begriff des Mit­tel­al­ters kri­ti­sier­te und zur Dis­po­si­ti­on stell­te: Bau­er, Tho­mas (23.8.2018): “Was den Blick ver­stellt. Der Ori­ent und das Mit­tel­al­ter.” In: Frank­furt All­ge­mei­ne Zei­tung (Online); 23.8.2018.

Bau­er wen­det sich dar­in nicht allein gegen eine Anwen­dung des Begriffs “Mit­tel­al­ter” auf die isla­mi­sche Welt, son­dern erklärt ihn auch für Euro­pa für nicht nur unbrauch­bar, weil die mit ihm gesetz­ten “Epochen”-Grenzen 1 schlecht begrün­det sei­en, inso­fern wesent­li­che für die­se Abgren­zung her­an­ge­zo­ge­ne Ände­run­gen (1) deut­lich frü­her begon­nen hät­ten, (2) zeit­lich über die Ein­gren­zung hin­aus­reich­ten, oder (3) die Lebens­wirk­lich­keit nur weni­ger Men­schen betra­fen. Die heu­te als “Mit­tel­al­ter” zusam­men­ge­fass­ten Jahr­hun­der­te sei­en viel­mehr als eine “for­ma­ti­ve Peri­ode”, als ein Über­gang zwi­schen der Anti­ke und der Neu­zeit zu ver­ste­hen — nicht ein­heit­lich und abge­schlos­sen genug, um als eige­ner Abschnitt zu gelten.

Bau­er geht damit über eine älte­re Linie der Kri­tik am Mit­tel­al­ter-Begriff deut­lich hin­aus, die u.a. die Kon­tin­genz der Abgren­zungs­kri­te­ri­en und die regio­na­le Varia­bi­li­tät der zeit­li­chen Abgren­zun­gen umfass­te, wie etwa — neben vie­len ande­ren Aspek­ten — bei Peter von Moos in sei­nem Bei­trag von 1999 über die “Gefah­ren des Mit­tel­al­ter­be­griffs” 2.
Anders als von Moos aber spricht sich Bau­er nicht für eine fort­ge­setz­te Nut­zung unter deut­li­cher Kenn­zeich­nung des Kon­tex­tes und der eige­nen Ver­wen­dung 3, son­dern eigent­lich für eine Über­win­dung und Auf­ga­be des Mit­tel­al­ter­be­griffs aus. Der bei Öff­nung des o.a. Tex­tes in einem Brow­ser sicht­ba­re Fens­ter­ti­tel lau­tet denn auch: “War­um man sich vom Begriff ‘Mit­tel­al­ter’ ver­ab­schie­den sollte.”
Damit greift er eine radi­ka­le Linie auf, die auch schon Ber­hard Jus­sen 2016 in Geschich­te in Wis­sen­schaft und Unter­richt 4, und zuvor Hart­mut Boock­mann und Karl-Fer­di­nand Wer­ner vor­ge­tra­gen hat­ten 5.

Wie Jus­sen 6 argu­men­tiert nun auch Bau­er, dass der Begriff des Mit­tel­al­ters nicht nur sub­op­ti­mal und unein­deu­tig sei, son­dern “es gera­de­zu ver­bie­te[.], die Regi­on in der Zeit zwi­schen dem Ende des West­rö­mi­schen Reichs 476 und dem Ers­ten Kreuz­zug 1096 noch als Gan­zes in den Blick zu neh­men” (Bau­er 2018). Und wäh­rend Jus­sen abs­trakt meint, es wäre am bes­ten, “For­schung und Leh­re” hör­ten “fürs ers­te schon mal damit auf, mit Makro­kon­zep­ten zu arbei­ten, deren Dekon­struk­ti­on ihnen längst selbst­ver­ständ­lich ist.” Es sei “sehr ein­fach, die Wor­te “Mit­tel­al­ter” und “Neu­zeit” durch bes­se­res zu erset­zen” 7, legt Bau­er einen kon­kre­ten Vor­schlag vor: “Damit ergä­be sich fol­gen­de Epo­chen­glie­de­rung: Die roma­no-grae­co-ira­ni­sche Anti­ke geht um 250 nach Chris­tus in eine Spät­an­ti­ke über, die um 1050 groß­räu­mig in eine neue Epo­che ein­tritt, wel­che wie­der­um bis etwa 1750 andau­ert” 8.

Ein gewis­ser Wider­spruch oder zumin­dest ein Span­nungs­ver­hält­nis ist in Bau­ers Kon­zept­ge­brauch erkenn­bar, inso­fern er einer­seits danach fragt, “wie sich die Geschich­te […] sinn­voll [!] in Peri­oden ein­tei­len” lässt, dass sie für die gan­ze Regi­on Gel­tung haben”, Epo­chen also Kon­zep­te anspricht, die retro­spek­tiv von die Zei­ten und Wand­lun­gen betrach­ten­den His­to­ri­kern unter Nut­zung von Sinn­kri­te­ri­en gebil­det und ange­wandt wer­den, gleich­zei­tig aber aber durch­aus von “einer tat­säch­li­chen Epo­chen­gren­ze” spricht, die “in [!] vie­len Regio­nen wie­der­um um das elf­te Jahr­hun­dert her­um zu suchen [!]” sei.

Nach eini­gen Über­le­gun­gen zu via­blen Kri­te­ri­en und Begrün­dun­gen zur Abgren­zung des Mit­tel­al­ters an sei­nem Anfang und Ende ver­weist Bau­er auf Jac­ques LeG­offs Kri­tik ins­be­son­de­re an des­sen Abgren­zung zur “Neu­zeit” und wird dann wie­der grund­sätz­li­cher. Erst die Fran­zö­si­sche Revo­lu­ti­on (mit der Napo­leo­ni­schen Zeit) sei von (zumin­dest vie­len) Zeit­ge­nos­sen selbst als “epo­cha­ler Über­gang” wahr­ge­nom­men wor­den: “Alle frü­he­ren Epo­chen­gren­zen sind nur Kon­struk­te von Historikern.”

Damit kommt ein wei­te­res Motiv ins Spiel, dem­zu­fol­ge Epo­chen­gren­zen nicht retro­spek­tiv (weder nach erst im Rück­blick erkenn­ba­ren “objek­ti­ven” Kri­te­ri­en noch nach sich aus der gegen­wär­ti­gen Fra­ge­stel­lung abge­lei­te­ten), son­dern aus der Wahr­neh­mung der Zeit­ge­nos­sen her­aus defi­niert werden.

Epo­chen­gren­zen wer­den somit zwar nicht als in der Ver­gan­gen­heit selbst, gewis­ser­ma­ßen vom Gegen­stand vor­ge­ge­ben, defi­niert, wohl aber wird gefor­dert, dass aus der Per­spek­ti­ve der jewei­li­gen Zeit wahr­ge­nom­men bzw. gedacht wer­den müs­sen. Das ist eine Vari­an­te der his­to­ris­ti­schen Vor­stel­lung, jede Zeit nur aus sich her­aus ver­ste­hen zu kön­nen bzw. zu sol­len, und steht somit neue­ren Kon­zep­ten his­to­ri­schen Den­kens und his­to­ri­scher For­schung, spe­zi­fisch retro­spek­tiv zu sein, entgegen.

Die Kri­tik am Mit­tel­al­ter­be­griff muss aber wohl in min­des­tens zwei in kom­ple­xer Wei­se auf­ein­an­der ver­wie­se­ne Lini­en unter­glie­dert wer­den: 1) in eine eher “inhalt­li­che” Kri­tik, wel­che die Impli­ka­tio­nen der Rede von (bes­ser: des Den­kens in) sol­chem Begriff in den Mit­tel­punkt stellt und alter­na­ti­ve Epo­chen­glie­de­run­gen erar­bei­tet und vor­schlägt, die die­se ablö­sen (oder viel­leicht auch ergän­zen) sol­len – wie hier.
Dane­ben bedarf es aber drin­gend auch einer all­ge­mei­ne­ren Refle­xi­ons­ebe­ne 2), für die die Kri­tik am Mit­tel­al­ter­be­griff oft schon als tri­vi­al ange­se­hen wird: An ihm (gera­de auch stell­ver­tre­tend für ande­re Epo­chen- und Struk­tur­be­grif­fe) auf­zu­zei­gen, dass sol­che Begrif­fe „kon­stru­iert“ sind, nur im Rück­blick über­haupt denk­bar, inso­fern sie retro­spek­ti­ves Wis­sen benö­ti­gen („kein Mensch des Mit­tel­al­ters wuss­te, dass er in einem ‚Mit­tel­al­ter‘ leb­te“ etc.), ist mei­ner Erfah­rung nach nicht nur für schu­li­schen Geschichts­un­ter­richt, son­dern auch in der Uni­ver­si­tät immer wie­der nötig, wer­den die­se Kon­zep­te doch nicht nur von Stu­die­ren­den, son­dern auch von amt­li­chen Vor­ga­ben als qua­si gege­be­ne, unfrag­li­che Glie­de­run­gen benutzt – so auch in den „Län­der­ge­mein­sa­men Anfor­de­run­gen für die Leh­rer­bil­dung“ der KMK im Fach­pro­fil Geschich­te (2008 bis 2017). Die­se ver­lan­gen von den Lehr­amts­stu­die­ren­den nicht nur ein­fach die Ver­fü­gung über „struk­tu­rier­tes his­to­ri­sches Grund­wis­sen aus allen his­to­ri­schen Epo­chen“ KMK 2017, S. 32; vgl. S. 33), son­dern las­sen zudem jeg­li­che Anfor­de­rung auf die Refle­xi­on von Epo­chen­be­grif­fen als dis­zi­pli­nä­re Instru­men­ta­ri­en ver­mis­sen. Weder sol­len Lehr­amts­stu­die­ren­de also über die Kon­struk­ti­on sol­cher Begrif­fe aus der Retro­spek­ti­ve, noch über ihre Deu­tungs­wir­kung, Uni­for­mi­tät nach Innen und Abgren­zung zu vor­aus­lau­fen­den und nach­fol­gen­den „Epo­chen“ zu erzeu­gen, nach­den­ken – aber offen­kun­dig auch nicht über ihre „inhalt­li­chen“ Kon­se­quen­zen, wie sie hier (und bei Jus­sen) pos­tu­liert werden.
Es wäre gera­de kei­ne Lösung, den Begriff des Mit­tel­al­ters abzu­schaf­fen, ihn zu ver­mei­den, ihn aus den Lehr­plä­nen gänz­lich zu strei­chen, oder auch nur, sei­ne Nut­zung auf die­je­ni­gen Räu­me zu begren­zen, für die sol­che nega­ti­ven Wir­kun­gen noch nicht vor­ge­bracht wären, und ihn durch bes­se­re Begrif­fe und Peri­odi­sie­run­gen zu ersetzen.
Gera­de weil uns und den Schü­le­rin­nen und Schü­lern das Kon­zept in der Geschichts­kul­tur (und der For­schung) stän­dig begeg­net, darf es nicht aus dem Geschichts­un­ter­richt ver­schwin­den. ABER es muss sei­nen STATUS ändern. Es muss – ganz ähn­lich wie die Chro­no­lo­gie selbst – vom unfrag­li­chen, weit­ge­hend unthe­ma­ti­sier­ten, impli­zi­ten Ord­nungs­in­stru­men­ta­ri­um zum expli­zi­ten Gegen­stand von Ler­nen und Refle­xi­on wer­den. Nicht (nur) „Kennt­nis­se in Mit­tel­al­ter­li­cher Geschich­te“ gilt es zu ver­mit­teln, son­dern eine Ver­fü­gung über den Begriff, die Leis­tun­gen und Gren­zen (bzw. „Gefah­ren“; von Moos 1999) des Begriffs, sei­ne Her­kunft, und sei­ne Pas­sung reflektiert.

Anmer­kun­gen /​ Refe­ren­ces
  1. Der Begriff der epo­ché bezeich­net eigent­lich ja nicht den ein­ge­heg­ten Zeit­ab­schnitt, son­dern den unter­tei­len­den Ein­schnitt []
  2. Moos, Peter von (1999): Gefah­ren des Mit­tel­al­ter­be­griffs. Dia­gnos­ti­sche und prä­ven­ti­ve Aspek­te. In: Joa­chim Heinz­le (Hg.): Moder­nes Mit­tel­al­ter. Neue Bil­der einer popu­lä­ren Epo­che. 1. Aufl. Frank­furt am Main, Leip­zig: Insel-Ver­lag (Insel-Taschen­buch, 2513 : Geschich­te), S. 31 – 63. []
  3. von Moos, S. 58 []
  4. Jus­sen, Bern­hard (2016): Rich­tig den­ken im fal­schen Rah­men? War­um das ‘Mit­tel­al­ter’ nicht in den Lehr­plan gehört. In: GWU 67 (9÷10), S. 558 – 576. — man beach­te den Unter­ti­tel![]
  5. Auch refe­riert bei Jus­sen 2016, 560 []
  6. Mit Rudolf Leon­hard: “Wer falsch spricht, denkt falsch.”; Jus­sen 2016, S. 576. []
  7. Jus­sen 2016, S. 576 []
  8. Bau­er 2018 []
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Analyzing Monuments using crosstabulations of Historical Thinking Competencies and Types of Narrating

16. Oktober 2018 Andreas Körber Keine Kommentare

This artic­le is a fol­low-up to the dis­cus­sion on Sté­pha­ne Léves­ques model of his­to­ri­cal com­pe­ten­ci­es as pre­sen­ted in Public Histo­ry Weekly, a few days ago, titled “Remo­ving the ‘Past’: Deba­tes Over Offi­ci­al Sites of Memo­ry“1 and my first exten­ded com­ment on this published here on this blog.

A cros­s­ta­bu­la­ti­on of com­pe­ten­ci­es and patterns/​logic of sen­se­ma­king as sug­gested by Sté­pha­ne Léves­que2 is inde­ed useful for “rea­ding” indi­vi­du­al monu­ments and making sen­se of their “mes­sa­ge”, also. Lévesque’s fil­ling of the table is a bit abs­tract, gene­ral for this, so the fol­lo­wing would in part be my own understanding.

It also is based on Rüsen’s noti­on that while the dif­fe­rent pat­terns were deve­lo­ped sequen­ti­al­ly over time, to “older” ones are not lost, but still available and inde­ed visi­ble in modern day thin­king, in fact most of the time in com­bi­na­ti­ons. What cha­rac­te­ri­zes modern-time his­to­ri­cal thin­king, then, is the pre­sence and domi­nan­ce of “gene­tic” thin­king, while pre-modern thought would not have this type at its dis­po­sal at all. But then, our examp­les here are all “modern”, so that it may be a ques­ti­on of domi­nan­ce and rela­ti­ve weight.

Take a monu­ment for a civil war general:

  • A spec­ta­tor today may read it as a remin­der to the ori­gin of the cur­rent sta­te of affairs, pos­si­bly the “losing of the cau­se” (e.g. both the hono­u­red gene­ral and the spec­ta­tor being sou­the­ners) or to the libe­ra­ti­on of the slaves (both nor­the­ners). In both cases, the monu­ment would be seen as poin­ting to an ori­gin of what is seen as valid today (the very defi­ni­ti­on of Rüsen’s “tra­di­tio­nal” type). This might explain why peo­p­le adhe­ring to the nor­t­hern nar­ra­ti­ve would oppo­se to sou­thern monu­ments, and vice ver­sa, not believ­e­ing their sto­ry in the first place — and may­be fea­ring that kee­ping the monu­ments would signi­fy that their ver­si­on was to be seen as valid.
  • In an exem­pla­ric mode, howe­ver, both may accept the “other side’s” monu­ments, becau­se what they point at would not be seen as the ori­gin of affairs, but rather a gene­ral rule, e.g. hono­u­ring peo­p­le “bra­ve­ly fight­ing for their respec­ti­ve (!) cau­se”. The logic would be that each socie­ty would honor “their heroes”, who do not so much stand for the spe­ci­fic cau­se but for a gene­ral rule. What hap­pens on the ground in Get­tysburg, e.g., is some­thing along this line: “Tra­di­tio­nal” com­me­mo­ra­ting attracts most peo­p­le going the­re, but an exem­pla­ry “cover-nar­ra­ti­ve” allows for com­mon remembrance.

Con­sider an exam­p­le from Ham­burg, whe­re I work3: On our “Rat­haus­markt”, the­re is a monu­ment, hono­u­ring Hamburg’s dead from WW1. When it was erec­ted in 1932, it loo­ked as it does today. The inscrip­ti­on on one side reads “FOURTY THOUSAND SONS OF TOWN LEFT/​LOST THEIR LIVES FOR YOU” (in Ger­man: “Vier­zig Tau­send Söh­ne der Stadt lie­ßen ihr Leben für Euch”) while the other side shows reli­ef by Ernst Bar­lach depic­ting a woman (mother) and child (daugh­ter) appar­ent­ly com­fort­ing each other in mour­ning (and the­r­e­fo­re some­what remi­nis­cent of a pie­tà).

Ernst Barlach: Relief (1931; Re-construction) auf dem Mahnmal auf dem Hamburger Rathausmarkt. Foto von Wikimedia Commons (gemeinfrei): https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/2c/Hamburg_Mahnmal_01_KMJ-adj.jpg

Ernst Bar­lach: Reli­ef (1931; Re-Con­s­truc­tion of 1948) on Ham­burg Town Hall Squa­re Monu­ment . Pho­to from Wiki­me­dia Com­mons (public domain): https://​upload​.wiki​me​dia​.org/​w​i​k​i​p​e​d​i​a​/​c​o​m​m​o​n​s​/​2​/​2​c​/​H​a​m​b​u​r​g​_​M​a​h​n​m​a​l​_​0​1​_​K​M​J​-​a​d​j​.​jpg

In 1938, the reli­ef was exch­an­ged for a “phoe­nix” fly­ing up.4 

Hans-Mar­tin Ruwoldt (1938): Phoe­nix on Ham­burg Town Hall Squa­re Monu­ment. Pho­to by https://​www​.denk​-mal​-gegen​-krieg​.de/​k​r​i​e​g​e​r​d​e​n​k​m​a​e​l​e​r​/​h​a​m​b​u​r​g​-​l​o​-​os/

In 1938, under Nazi rule, the reli­ef was exch­an­ged for a „phoe­nix“. Did it chan­ge the nar­ra­ti­ve and com­me­mo­ra­ti­ve eva­lua­ti­on of the loss of the 40000 Ham­bur­gi­ans? To my view, it most cer­tain­ly did.

The addi­ti­on of the last part “FOR YOU” to the inscrip­ti­on alre­a­dy befo­re the initi­al instal­la­ti­on of the monu­ment was a con­ces­si­on to the right par­ties, chan­ging (in Rüsen‘s terms) a more tra­di­tio­nal mes­sa­ge into a more exem­pla­ry one:

While the com­bi­na­ti­on of the initi­al wor­ding wit­hout the addi­ti­on „FOR YOU“ and the mother-child-reli­ef fit into a deve­lo­p­ment of monu­ment cul­tu­re deve­lo­ped in WW1 which has been iden­ti­fied in retro­s­pect, name­ly monu­ments which which do no lon­ger pro­vi­de an aut­ho­ri­ta­ti­ve sug­ges­ti­on of the mea­ning of the protagonist‘s death, but rather ques­ti­on this mea­ning.5 It did so becau­se it expres­sed the con­ti­nuous loss, refer­ring to the dead sol­diers rather as vic­tims of a grea­ter con­text of war, to be mour­ned, by poin­ting to their their death and loss as the rather tra­gic ori­g­ins of the com­mon grief.

Adding „FOR YOU“ to the inscrip­ti­on did not ful­ly era­di­ca­te this nega­ti­ve-tra­di­tio­nal nar­ra­ti­ve pat­tern, but added an addi­tio­nal lay­er of dif­fe­rent nar­ra­ti­ve and eva­lua­ti­ve cha­rac­ter both to the deaths, which are ascri­bed a pur­po­se, and to the con­cep­tu­al framing of the dead, which are no lon­ger only vic­tims but also (self-)sacrifices for a com­mon good. Inte­res­t­ingly, both con­cepts, that of vic­tim and that of sacri­fice, are pre­sent in the Ger­man term „Opfer“ expli­cit­ly used, but allu­ded to, here.

The exch­an­ge of the mour­ning mother/child-reli­ef by a „phoe­nix“ in 1938, then, era­di­ca­ted the thin lay­er of ques­tio­ning the pur­po­se and mea­ning of the loss, the noti­on of „vic­tims“ and ren­de­red the 40,000 Fathers, Brot­hers and „Sons of Town“ heroes – not only self-sacri­fices for the well­be­ing of their respec­ti­ve fami­lies, but role-models to be cele­bra­ted and emu­la­ted.6 In 1948, then, the lost Bar­lach-reli­ef, was res­to­red, alas not by Bar­lach hims­elf, who had mean­while died.

I do have a hard time con­s­truc­ting a gene­tic under­stan­ding of such a monu­ment, may­be becau­se a modern, gene­tic way of thin­king needs to have been infor­med by the “cri­ti­cal” mode of at least part­ly de-legi­ti­mi­zing the ori­en­ta­ting power of tra­di­tio­nal and exem­pla­ric thinking.

May­be this is the back­ground for modern monu­ments being quite dif­fe­rent, eit­her often non-figu­ra­ti­ve — as Peter Eisenman’s Memo­ri­al to the Mur­de­red Jews in Ber­lin, or many works by Jochen Gerz7 — or taking on forms of coun­ter-memo­ri­a­liza­ti­on8, thus set­ting in moti­on a kind of chan­ge, not just re-pre­sent-ing a past, but encou­ra­ging or even enfor­cing cri­ti­cal reflec­tion on it.

It is easier for the Ham­burg monu­ment: Gene­tic thin­king would ques­ti­on whe­ther not only this heroi­fy­ing way of com­me­mo­ra­ting heroes (even if not indi­vi­du­al), but also the con­cre­te form of public ack­now­led­ging of tra­gic loss can be time­ly, after we expe­ri­en­ced ano­ther war and an inhu­man dic­ta­tor­ship and geno­ci­de which was not least based on fee­lings ins­ti­ga­ted by such com­me­mo­ra­ting.9

But the­re is some­thing more to reflec­ting about nar­ra­ti­ves — and espe­ci­al­ly on how to rela­te to them. As I wro­te abo­ve, Memo­ri­als are nar­ra­ti­ves. Rüsen calls them “nar­ra­ti­ve abbre­via­ti­ons”, poin­ting to them stan­ding for a spe­ci­fic nar­ra­ti­ve, i.e. a spe­ci­fic rela­ti­on bet­ween a past (under memo­ry), the pre­sent (of the aut­hors and erec­tors of the monu­ment as well as the inten­ded public), and with regard to a spe­ci­fic future, con­s­truc­ted only part­ly in ver­bal nar­ra­ti­ve form, but also with non-ver­bal and sequen­ti­al­ly nar­ra­ti­ve ele­ments (even though in some cases it is only the ver­bal inscrip­ti­ons which real­ly hint to any his­to­ri­cal meaning).

Memo­ri­als are more than only pro­to-nar­ra­ti­ves. Their (often) pro­mi­nent (albeit also often over­loo­ked) posi­tio­ning, their (proto-)narrative struc­tu­re and their own qua­li­ty for las­ting a long time (cf. “monu­men­tum exegi aere per­en­ni­us), they do not only con­sti­tu­te a nar­ra­ti­ve rela­ti­on from one tem­po­ral and social posi­ti­on towrds the past and the future, but also are meant to pro­long the sen­se they make and to impo­se it on later gene­ra­ti­ons. Monu­ments are about obli­ga­ting their audi­ence, the spec­ta­tors with a cer­tain nar­ra­ti­ve and inter­pre­ta­ti­on. That qua­li­fies them as parts of what we call “poli­tics of histo­ry”, not only of com­me­mo­ra­ti­on, and what makes them political.

It the­r­e­fo­re is para­mount to read monu­ments as nar­ra­ti­ves, and not only in the de-con­s­truc­ti­ve sen­se of “what did tho­se erec­tors make of that past back then”, but also in the re-con­c­truc­ti­ve sen­se of “in how far or how does this nar­ra­ti­ve fit into my/​our rela­ti­on to that past). In other words: Stan­ding befo­re a monu­ment and thin­king about monu­ments, we all need to (and in fact do) think in a com­bi­na­ti­on of under­stan­ding the others’ and deli­be­ra­ting our own nar­ra­ti­ve mea­ning-making.
The­r­e­fo­re we need to read them as nar­ra­ti­ves first, and beco­me com­pe­tent for it.

Monu­ments often take on the form of addres­sing peo­p­le. Some­ti­mes — as in the Ham­burg case abo­ve — they address the spec­ta­tor, remin­ding them of some kind of obli­ga­ti­on to com­me­mo­ra­te.10 But who is tal­king to whom? If the sena­te of Ham­burg tal­kes to that to the Ham­burg citi­zens of 1930 – 1932, can/​will we accept that (a) the Ham­burg Sena­te of today still admo­nis­hes us like that, and b) that we Ham­burg citi­zens of today are still addres­sed in the same way?

In other cases, (inscrip­ti­ons in) memo­ri­als might expli­cit­ly address the com­me­mo­ra­ted them­sel­ves, as e.g. in the con­fe­de­ra­te monu­ment in Yan­cey­ville, N.C., who­se plaque reads “To the Sons of Cas­well Coun­ty who ser­ved in the War of 1861 – 1865 in ans­wer to the Call of their Coun­ty”, and con­ti­nues in a “We-Voice”, signed by the Cas­well Chap­ter of the United Daugh­ters of the Con­fe­dera­cy”. So far so con­ven­tio­nal. This might be rather unpro­ble­ma­tic, sin­ce spea­k­er-posi­ti­on and addres­sees are cle­ar­ly mark­ed. One might lea­ve the monu­ment even if one dis­agreed, not having to ali­gn with its nar­ra­ti­ve. Only if the pre­sence of such com­me­mo­ra­ting in its­elf is inac­cep­ta­ble, action is imme­dia­te­ly cal­led for.

But the­re are other monu­ments which seem to talk from a neu­tral posi­ti­on, which in fact is that of the erec­tors, but by not being qua­li­fied, includes the spec­ta­tor into the spea­k­er posi­ti­on. The exam­p­le I have rea­dy at hand, is not from the US and not about war heroes, but again from Ham­burg, this time from Neu­en­gam­me con­cen­tra­ti­on camp memo­ri­al. In 1965, an “inter­na­tio­nal monu­ment” ste­le11 was erec­ted the­re, tog­e­ther with a who­le series of coun­try-spe­ci­fic memo­ri­al pla­tes. The inscrip­ti­on on the monu­ment reads “Your suf­fe­ring, your fight­ing and your death shall not be in vain” (my trans­la­ti­on).
This now cle­ar­ly is inte­res­t­ing in at least two respects: (1) it ascri­bes not only suf­fe­ring and death, but also fight­ing to tho­se com­me­mo­ra­ted and ther­eby pos­si­bly does not refer to tho­se inma­tes who never had a chan­ce or did not “fight”, who were pure vic­tims, and (2) it speaks from a neu­tral voice which is not mark­ed in time and social, poli­ti­cal or event-rela­ted posi­ti­on. Whoe­ver mourns at that place pos­si­bly sil­ent­ly co-signs the statement.

International Monument (1965) at Neuengamme Concentration Camp Memorial (partial photo; (c) 2006 Andreas Körber)

Inter­na­tio­nal Monu­ment (1965) at Neu­en­gam­me Con­cen­tra­ti­on Camp Memo­ri­al (par­ti­al pho­to; © 2006 Andre­as Körber)

Con­sider an equal hono­u­ring of con­fe­de­ra­te gene­rals in, say NC: “Your fight­ing shall not have been in vain.” I would spark much more con­tro­ver­sy and con­cers — and right­ly so.

Still ano­ther exam­p­le, the first Ham­burg monu­ment for the vic­tims of Natio­nal Socia­lism (from late 1945) on the Cen­tral Ceme­try in Ham­burg-Ohls­dorf, has an inscrip­ti­on “Inju­s­ti­ce brought Us Death — Living: Reco­gni­ze your Obligation”.

Erstes Hamburger Mahnmal für die Opfer des Nationalsozialismus von 11/1945 in Hamburg Ohlsdorf. Foto von NordNordWest/Wikipedia. Lizenz: CC-BY-SA 3.0; (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/de/legalcode); Original: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mahnmal_Opfer_der_NS-Verfolgung_Ohlsdorf.jpg

Ers­tes Ham­bur­ger Mahn­mal für die Opfer des Natio­nal­so­zia­lis­mus von 11/​1945 in Ham­burg Ohls­dorf. Foto von NordNordWest/​Wikipedia. Lizenz: CC-BY-SA 3.0; (https://​crea​tive​com​mons​.org/​l​i​c​e​n​s​e​s​/​b​y​-​s​a​/​3​.​0​/​d​e​/​l​e​g​a​l​c​ode); Ori­gi­nal: http://​com​mons​.wiki​me​dia​.org/​w​i​k​i​/​F​i​l​e​:​M​a​h​n​m​a​l​_​O​p​f​e​r​_​d​e​r​_​N​S​-​V​e​r​f​o​l​g​u​n​g​_​O​h​l​s​d​o​r​f​.​jpg

 

Erstes Hamburger Mahnmal für die Opfer des Nationalsozialismus von 11/1945 in Hamburg Ohlsdorf; Detail. Zustand 25.3.2010; Foto (c) Andreas Körber

Ers­tes Ham­bur­ger Mahn­mal für die Opfer des Natio­nal­so­zia­lis­mus von 11/​1945 in Ham­burg Ohls­dorf; Detail. Zustand 25.3.2010; Foto © Andre­as Körber

 

Again, for ana­ly­zing and under­stan­ding, we need to reco­gni­ze. The spea­k­er posi­ti­on here, is cle­ar­ly (meta­pho­ri­call) held by the vic­tims to be com­me­mo­ra­ted. But whom do they speak to? Lite­ral­ly, it is the “living”. In a very broad under­stan­ding, the monument/​memorial the­r­e­fo­re addres­ses all humans, quite in a way what Rüsen has addres­sed as the hig­hest level of nor­ma­ti­ve plau­si­bi­li­ty: broa­de­ning the per­spec­ti­ve to the level of huma­ni­ty.
This is not very pro­ble­ma­tic, sin­ce the inscrip­ti­on does talk of “duty”, not of “guilt”, it does not con­f­la­te the addres­sees with tho­se who inflic­ted the inju­s­ti­ce upon the vic­tims. But it could have done. In 1945, the mes­sa­ge would be cle­ar­ly not mere­ly uni­ver­sal­ly huma­ni­stic, but at least also addres­sing the Ger­mans as the socie­ty of the per­pe­tra­tors. It does not con­demn, but calls for reco­gni­zing the “duty” and respon­si­bi­li­ty for com­me­mo­ra­ting and non-repea­ting as well as over­co­ming the struc­tures of NS inju­s­ti­ce, hin­ting at respon­si­bi­li­ty for not pre­ven­ting them or even par­ti­ci­pa­ting in them in the first place.

And today? In how far is the mes­sa­ge the same for today’s socie­ty in Ger­ma­ny? The peo­p­le living in Ger­ma­ny today do — apart from very few excep­ti­ons — not share any per­so­nal guilt or respon­si­bi­li­ty for what hap­pen­ed. In how far can or should they see them­sel­ves addressed?

Again, the­re is no ques­ti­on as to the very gene­ral, huma­ni­ty-rela­ted address. This is direc­ted at any audi­ence. But would that mean that the­re is no dif­fe­rence bet­ween any other visi­tor to the memo­ri­al and Ger­mans? Has the Nazi inju­s­ti­ce (and simi­lar­ly the Holo­caust) beco­me a mat­ter of gene­ral, uni­ver­sal histo­ry only? Is the­re no spe­cial belon­ging to and mes­sa­ge for Ger­man histo­ry? All the­se ques­ti­ons can and need to be addres­sed — and espe­ci­al­ly so, sin­ce a con­sidera­ble part of Ger­man socie­ty con­sists not only of peo­p­le born and rai­sed (long) after the “Third Reich”, but also of many who immi­gra­ted from other count­ries, socie­ties and cul­tures mean­while. Are they sim­ply coun­ted into the per­pe­tra­tors’ socie­ty? — no, I think; but as peo­p­le living in Ger­ma­ny, they also are adres­sed in a more spe­ci­fic way than any other visi­tor — and they are expec­ted to feel addres­sed, also. While the­re may be (and often inde­ed is) not spe­ci­fic respon­si­bi­li­ty for what the­se memo­ri­als and monu­ments refer to, the­re sure­ly is a spe­ci­fic respon­si­bi­li­ty from or out of this histo­ry — and the­se monu­ments the­r­e­fo­re ser­ve not only as gene­ral mar­kers to a set past, but also as marks which have spe­ci­fic mes­sa­ges and dif­fe­rent (but com­pa­ti­ble) ones for dif­fe­rent reci­pi­ents. This is what also is a part of what is nee­ded to be reflec­ted and dis­cus­sed with regard to monu­ments in public histo­ry cul­tu­re and what histo­ry edu­ca­ti­on needs to enable lear­ners to par­ta­ke in.

In order to make up our minds on monu­ments we have “inhe­ri­ted” not only in poli­ti­cal terms, we need to reflect their spe­ci­fic nar­ra­ti­ve mes­sa­ge in a spec­trum of time-rela­ti­ons. And we need to dif­fe­ren­tia­te our ter­mi­no­lo­gy and enable our stu­dents to mas­ter a set of con­cepts rela­ted. We need, e.g., to distin­gu­ish hono­ring forms of com­me­mo­ra­ti­on from remin­ding and admo­nis­hing ones.

In Ger­ma­ny we have (not eas­liy) deve­lo­ped the noti­on of “Mahn­mal”, admo­nis­hing, to be distin­gu­is­hed from a mere “Denk­mal” (lite­ral­ly a “thin­king mark”). But even this distinc­tion is insuf­fi­ci­ent. A Mahn­mal (in fact the lite­ral trans­la­ti­on to “monu­ment”, from Latin “admon­e­re”) may admo­nish to remem­ber our own suf­fe­ring inflic­ted on us by our­sel­ves, some tra­gic or by others, but also may admo­nish to not for­get what we inflic­ted on others. This is the spe­ci­fic form “nega­ti­ve memo­ry” of Ger­man memo­ri­al culture.

 

The­r­e­fo­re, there’s a lot more to be reflec­ted in commemorating:

  • Who “talks”? who aut­hors the nar­ra­ti­ve — and is what capa­ci­ty (e.g. in lieuf of “the peo­p­le”, of a cer­tain group, …)?
  • whom does the monu­ment expli­ci­ty address?
  • what is the rela­ti­on of expli­cit addres­sees and fac­tu­al spectators?
  • in how far is the mes­sa­ge the same for us today as it was envi­sio­ned back then — and pos­si­bly rea­li­zed? is it the same for all of us?
  • what kind of mes­sa­ge is perceived?

(cf. Kör­ber 2014)

 

Refe­ren­ces:

  • Has­berg, Wolf­gang (2012): Ana­ly­ti­sche Wege zu bes­se­rem Geschichts­un­ter­richt. His­to­ri­sches Den­ken im Hand­lungs­zu­sam­men­hang Geschichts­un­ter­richt. In: Mey­er-Ham­me, Johan­nes /​ Thü­ne­mann, Hol­ger /​ Züls­dorf-Kers­t­ing, Meik (Hrsg.): Was heißt guter Geschichts­un­ter­richt? Per­spek­ti­ven im Ver­gleich. Schwalbach/​Ts. /​ Wochen­schau, S. 137 – 160, p. 140.
  • Klin­gel, Kers­tin (2006): Eichen­kranz und Dor­nen­kro­ne. Krie­ger­denk­mä­ler in Ham­burg. Ham­burg: Lan­des­zen­tra­le für Poli­ti­sche Bildung.
  • Kör­ber, Andre­as (2014): De-Con­s­truc­ting Memo­ry Cul­tu­re. In: Tea­ching his­to­ri­cal memo­ries in an inter­cul­tu­ral per­spec­ti­ve. Con­cepts and methods : expe­ri­en­ces and results from the Teac­Mem pro­ject. Hrsg. von Hel­le Bjerg, Andre­as Kör­ber, Clau­dia Lenz u. Oli­ver von Wro­chem. Ber­lin 2014, 145 – 151.
  • Kör­ber, Andre­as (2016): Sinn­bil­dungs­ty­pen als Gra­du­ie­run­gen? Ver­such einer Klä­rung am Bei­spiel der His­to­ri­schen Fra­ge­kom­pe­tenz. In: Kat­ja Leh­mann, Micha­el Wer­ner und Ste­fa­nie Zabold (Hg.): His­to­ri­sches Den­ken jetzt und in Zukunft. Wege zu einem theo­re­tisch fun­dier­ten und evi­denz­ba­sier­ten Umgang mit Geschich­te. Fest­schrift für Wal­traud Schrei­ber zum 60. Geburts­tag. Ber­lin, Müns­ter: Lit Ver­lag (Geschichts­di­dak­tik in Ver­gan­gen­heit und Gegen­wart, 10), S. 27 – 41.
  • Rüsen, Jörn (2017): Evi­dence and Mea­ning. A Theo­ry of His­to­ri­cal Stu­dies. Unter Mit­ar­beit von Dia­ne Kerns und Katie Digan. New York, NY: Berg­hahn Books Incor­po­ra­ted (Making Sen­se of Histo­ry Ser, v.28).
Anmer­kun­gen /​ Refe­ren­ces
  1.   Léves­que, Sté­pha­ne: Remo­ving the “Past”: Deba­tes Over Offi­ci­al Sites of Memo­ry. In: Public Histo­ry Weekly 6 (2018) 29, DOI: dx​.doi​.org/​1​0​.​1​5​1​5​/​p​h​w​-​2​018 – 12570. The­re also is a Ger­man and a French ver­si­on. []
  2. Ano­ther such cros­s­ta­bu­la­ti­on has been sug­gested (in Ger­man) by Wolf­gang Has­berg (Ana­ly­ti­sche Wege zu bes­se­rem Geschichts­un­ter­richt. His­to­ri­sches Den­ken im Hand­lungs­zu­sam­men­hang Geschichts­un­ter­richt. In: Mey­er-Ham­me, Johan­nes /​ Thü­ne­mann, Hol­ger /​ Züls­dorf-Kers­t­ing, Meik (Hrsg.): Was heißt guter Geschichts­un­ter­richt? Per­spek­ti­ven im Ver­gleich. Schwalbach/​Ts. /​ Wochen­schau, S. 137 – 160, p. 140). For my cri­tique see Kör­ber 2016 (in Ger­man). I also pro­vi­ded a table, inclu­ding the dif­fe­rent niveaus, but rest­ric­ted to “Fra­ge­kom­pe­tenz” (simi­lar to Lévesque’s “inquiry com­pe­tence”). []
  3. I used this also in a twit­ter-dis­cus­sion with Kim Wag­ner (@KimAtiWagner) recent­ly. []
  4. For more pic­tures and infor­ma­ti­on see also https://​www​.denk​-mal​-gegen​-krieg​.de/​k​r​i​e​g​e​r​d​e​n​k​m​a​e​l​e​r​/​h​a​m​b​u​r​g​-​l​o​-​os/. []
  5. On this type of monu­ments cf. Koselleck, Rein­hart (1994): Ein­lei­tung. In: Rein­hart Koselleck und Micha­el Jeis­mann (Hg.): Der poli­ti­sche Toten­kult. Krie­ger­denk­mä­ler in der Moder­ne. Mün­chen: Fink (Bild und Text), S. 9 – 20, here p. 18f. []
  6. Accor­ding to Klin­gel, Kers­tin (2006): Eichen­kranz und Dor­nen­kro­ne. Krie­ger­denk­mä­ler in Ham­burg. Ham­burg: Lan­des­zen­tra­le für Poli­ti­sche Bil­dung, p.71, the mour­ning-reli­ef initi­al­ly was to be repla­ced by “war sym­bols” but all skte­ches han­ded in by artists (inclu­ding a wrath with swords by Ruwoldt) were rejec­ted, so that he was com­mis­sio­ned to crea­te an eagle, which he did, but in a way which far more resem­bled a dove than an eagle. In how far this can be inter­pre­ted as a sub­ver­si­ve rejec­tion of the new mar­ti­al cha­rac­ter and even be eva­lua­ted as an act of defi­ance, is high­ly ques­tionable, sin­ce the sym­bo­lism of the dove as the uni­ver­si­al sym­bol for peace was crea­ted by Picas­so only after World­War II. []
  7. Cf. e.g. his “Invi­si­ble Monu­ment” in Sar­brü­cken: https://​en​.wiki​pe​dia​.org/​w​i​k​i​/​P​l​a​t​z​_​d​e​s​_​U​n​s​i​c​h​t​b​a​r​e​n​_​M​a​h​n​m​als. []
  8. Cf. a.o. Wij­sen­beek, Dinah: Denk­mal und Gegen­denk­mal. Über den kri­ti­schen Umgang mit der Ver­gan­gen­heit auf dem Gebiet der bil­den­den Kunst. Mün­chen 2010. []
  9. There’s a lot more to be reflec­ted in com­me­mo­ra­ting: Who talks to whom, here? What do they say and expect? Who is the “you”? Is it ” us” — still today? And if so: in how far is the mes­sa­ge the same for all of us, tho­se with Ham­burg ances­tors of the time, and tho­se wit­hout, may­be immi­grants? In how far can this aspect defi­ne our atti­tu­de? Can we force all recent immi­grants into our own “natio­nal” nar­ra­ti­ve (and even more so when it is not WW1, but Holo­caust rela­ted)? But then, how can we not? (cf. also Kör­ber 2014, and see below. []
  10. My mother used to explain the Ger­man word “Denk­mal”, lite­ral­ly referrring to a “mark(er)” for initia­ting thin­king, as an impe­ra­ti­ve: “Denk mal!”, refer­ring to the other mea­ning of the word “mal” as “for once”, resul­ting in “do think for once!” []
  11. Cf. https://​upload​.wiki​me​dia​.org/​w​i​k​i​p​e​d​i​a​/​c​o​m​m​o​n​s​/​t​h​u​m​b​/​1​/​1​5​/​N​e​u​e​n​g​a​m​m​e​_​m​e​m​o​r​i​a​l​.​j​p​g​/​8​0​0​p​x​-​N​e​u​e​n​g​a​m​m​e​_​m​e​m​o​r​i​a​l​.​jpg, (pho­to by Hao Liu in the public domain) []
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A new competency-model on monuments using Rüsen’s four types of narrating by Stéphane Lévesque — and a comment

15. Oktober 2018 Andreas Körber Keine Kommentare

In a recent con­tri­bu­ti­on to Public Histo­ry Weekly, titled “Remo­ving the ‘Past’: Deba­tes Over Offi­ci­al Sites of Memo­ry” 1Sté­pha­ne Léves­que from Otta­wa, Cana­da, pre­sen­ted a new model for monu­ment-rela­ted com­pe­ten­ci­es of his­to­ri­cal thin­king, using Jörn Rüsen’s types of his­to­ri­cal narrating.

The gra­phic ver­si­on of the model con­sists of four “com­pe­ten­ces”, visua­li­zed as smal­ler cog­wheels arran­ged around and inter­ac­ting with a cen­tral cog­wheel titled with “his­to­ri­cal con­scious­ness”. For each of the four com­pe­ten­ci­es, a short, monu­ment-rela­ted defi­ni­ti­on is given.

Prompt­ed by a com­men­ta­ry by Gabri­el Reich of Vir­gi­nia Com­mon­wealth Uni­ver­si­ty, who also works exten­si­ve­ly on monu­ments in memo­ry cul­tu­re, Sté­pha­ne Léves­que added a (more gene­ral) table ver­si­on (a Spa­nish trans­la­ti­on by Eliza­beth Mon­tana­res Var­gas has been pre­sen­ted on face­book, mean­while) in an ans­we­ring com­ment, fur­ther detail­ing the com­pe­ten­ci­es in his model. 2.

As much as I app­re­cia­te this new model of com­pe­ten­ci­es in gene­ral, I have also added a few comm­ents to it (and to one point of Gabri­el Reich’s com­ment, which is not in focus, here). The space pro­vi­ded by Public histo­ry weekly for com­men­ting is limi­t­ed and graphs are (at least not easi­ly) allo­wed. I the­r­e­fo­re use this my own blog for repea­ting my com­ment to Lévesque’s model, and to detail it a bit further.

First of all, I stron­gly sup­port the initia­ti­ve to ana­ly­se monu­ments as an expres­si­on of and fac­tor for his­to­ri­cal con­scious­ness. Inde­ed, we need both a) to ana­ly­se them as experts by using our reper­toire of his­to­rio­gra­phic methods and con­cepts in order to sti­mu­la­te and sup­port infor­med public dis­cus­sion about whe­ther a par­ti­cu­lar monu­ment is still desi­ra­ble (or at least accep­ta­ble) or whe­ther it needs to be chan­ged (and how) or even remo­ved, and b) to deve­lop people’s com­pe­ten­ces to address the­se issues them­sel­ves, i.e. to reflect on the natu­re, mea­ning and mes­sa­ge of a monu­ment both at the time of its con­s­truc­tion and today (e.g. through pre­ser­va­ti­on, main­ten­an­ce, altera­ti­on, com­men­ting or removal).

For this reason, I great­ly app­re­cia­te Stéphane’s pro­po­sal for a com­pe­ten­cy model, espe­ci­al­ly the table ver­si­on from the com­men­ta­ry abo­ve. This does not mean that I ful­ly sup­port the con­cre­te model, but it has enri­ched the deba­te. Three comm­ents on this:

(1) I doubt that com­pe­tence as such can be “tra­di­tio­nal”, “exem­pla­ry”, “gene­tic”, “cri­ti­cal” or “gene­tic”. The­se pat­terns, both as I under­stand Rüsen and for mys­elf, cha­rac­te­ri­ze the logic of nar­ra­ti­ves. I would the­r­e­fo­re rather read the table as “the com­pe­tence to query in the tra­di­tio­nal mode” … “the com­pe­tence to nar­ra­te in cri­ti­cal mode” etc.

(2) This again rai­ses the ques­ti­on of whe­ther the four pat­terns actual­ly con­sti­tu­te a distinc­tion of com­pe­tence niveaus. While I agree that the gene­tic mode of nar­ra­ting histo­ry is the his­to­ri­cal­ly most recent, com­plex and sui­ta­ble for explai­ning chan­ges, I doubt – this time against Rüsen (cf. Kör­ber 2016) – that the typo­lo­gy can descri­be com­pe­tence levels.
The com­pe­tence pro­gres­si­on would need to be defi­ned trans­ver­sal­ly: From (a) a basic level of non-distinc­ti­ve (and thus uncon­scious­ly con­fu­sing) forms and pat­terns, via (b) the abili­ty to per­form all the­se forms of ope­ra­ti­ons in the various pat­terns of Stéphane’s table (which would this descri­be a ful­ly deve­lo­ped inter­me­dia­te level), to © an ela­bo­ra­ted level of (addi­tio­nal) abili­ty to think about the natu­re of the­se distinc­tions, etc.

For this, the model is very useful, full of ide­as. It can help to think about what it takes to descri­be monu­ments neither as “the past” nor as “sim­ply old”, but to iden­ti­fy and “read” them as nar­ra­ti­ves (or nar­ra­ti­ve abbre­via­ti­ons) from a cer­tain time, who­se cur­rent tre­at­ment adds new nar­ra­ti­ve lay­ers to them, so that their exis­tence (or absence), form, and tre­at­ment of them can always be seen and eva­lua­ted as con­tem­po­ra­ry state­ments about the respec­ti­ve past. To reco­gni­ze this and to deal with it in a soci­al­ly respon­si­ble way requi­res the­se competences.

As far as Gabri­el Reich’s com­men­ta­ry is con­cer­ned, I only ask whe­ther his cha­rac­te­riza­ti­on of an atti­tu­de to the con­fe­de­ra­ti­on monu­ments can real­ly be addres­sed with Rüsen as “exem­pla­ry”, sin­ce this mode is not con­cer­ned with the main­ten­an­ce and sup­port of a con­ven­tio­nal iden­ti­ty, but with the deri­va­ti­on of a super­tem­po­ral rule. I would refer to the exam­p­le as “tra­di­tio­nal”. An “exem­pla­ry” atti­tu­de towards reten­ti­on would be more likely to be: “At all times, monu­ments of one’s own heroes have hel­ped the losers of war to hold on to their cau­se. Then that must be pos­si­ble for us too.” Or some­thing along that line.

So far the com­ment alre­a­dy published in Public Histo­ry Weekly.

That said, I might add, that I don’t mean that the “gene­tic” way of sen­se­ma­king is not in some way supe­ri­or to the others, and more apt for his­to­ri­cal mea­ning-making, espe­ci­al­ly in its inte­gra­ti­on of a noti­on of direc­ted chan­ge over time. My scep­ti­cism focu­ses on the idea that today’s people’s (“onto­ge­ne­tic”) com­pe­ten­ci­es of his­to­ri­cal thin­king pro­gres­ses along the same line as the cul­tu­ral (“phy­lo­ge­ne­tic”) deve­lo­p­ment of Rüsen’s pat­terns of sen­se­ma­king throug­hout the histo­ry of his­to­rio­gra­phy. Today’s youth simul­ta­neous­ly encoun­ter mani­fes­ta­ti­ons of his­to­ri­cal thin­king using all three (rather than four) 3 pat­terns of sen­se­ma­king. While the­re is a kind of “deve­lo­p­ment” of power of his­to­ri­cal mea­ning-making and expl­ana­ti­on from tra­di­tio­nal via exem­pla­ric to gene­tic, I doubt that peo­p­le and stu­dents have to move from the for­mer to the lat­ter — or do so.

My own idea of deve­lo­p­ment of com­pe­ten­ci­es of his­to­ri­cal thin­king can rather be visua­li­zed as fol­lows (adop­ting Lévesque’s table):

Three niveaus/​levels of com­pe­ten­ci­es (sche­ma­tic), fol­lo­wing the FUER-model (cf. Kör­ber et al. 2007; Kör­ber 2015) 4. The graph uses the table-ver­si­on of Sté­pha­ne Lévesque’s com­pe­tence-model for his­to­ri­cal thin­king on monu­ments (https://​public​-histo​ry​-weekly​.degruy​ter​.com/6 – 2018-29/­re­mo­ving-past-offi­ci­al-memo­ry/; cour­te­sy of Sté­pha­ne Léves­que by e‑mail Oct 15th, 2018). A.K. 2018

 

  1. A “basic” niveau (and pos­si­bly ear­ly stage) would be defi­ned by the ina­bi­li­ty of distin­gu­is­hing dif­fe­rent modes of his­to­ri­cal nar­ra­ting in gene­ral and refer­ring to monu­ments in this spe­ci­fic case. (Young) peo­p­le on this niveau (at this stage) will rela­te to them. They will ask ques­ti­ons (and thus exer­cise their “inquiry com­pe­tence”), think (“his­to­ri­cal thin­king com­pe­tence”), ori­en­ta­te them­sel­ves (“ori­en­ta­ti­on com­pe­tence”), and nar­ra­te (“nar­ra­ti­ve com­pe­tence”). But this basic niveau will not be defi­ned by being “tra­di­tio­nal”, but by an unin­for­med mixing (pos­si­bly only half-unders­tood) forms of all three pat­terns. This per­for­mance will be both insta­ble and incon­sis­tent. Half-baked tra­di­tio­nal ques­ti­ons will stand next to unre­flec­ted exem­pla­ry state­ments, and so on. In the graph abo­ve, this is sym­bo­li­zed by the blur­red table below.
  2. The abili­ty to app­ly the dif­fe­rent pat­terns in a some­what cla­ri­fied way, to distin­gu­ish them and sel­ect one, to iden­ti­fy incon­sis­ten­ci­es in their mixing, etc., then marks the inter­me­dia­ry niveau, and pos­si­ble a major stage in the deve­lo­p­ment of the­se com­pe­ten­ci­es. On this niveau, at this stage, peo­p­le will be able to dis­cuss about the mes­sa­ge a monu­ment expres­ses and the mea­ning it has for us today, but they might dis­agree and even quar­rel becau­se they app­ly dif­fe­rent pat­terns of mea­ning-making.
    In a way, Lévesque’s table descri­bes this inter­me­dia­te niveau, the dif­fe­rent forms of his­to­ri­cal inqui­ring, thin­king, ori­en­ta­ting, and nar­ra­ting can take, depen­ding from the gene­ral pat­tern of sen­se­ma­king. The table (the midd­le one in the graph abo­ve) cle­ar­ly points at some­thing, I have also tried to express in my Ger­man artic­le chal­len­ging Rüsen’s own idea of the dif­fe­rent pat­terns forming dif­fe­rent nivue­aus of com­pe­ten­ci­es 5: Each of the dif­fe­rent ope­ra­ti­ons (inqui­ring, nar­ra­ting, ori­en­ta­ting) will take on a spe­ci­fic stance of nar­ra­ting. It is a dif­fe­rence whe­ther I ask for a tra­di­ti­on or for a rule to be deri­ved from past examp­les, or about a pat­terns of chan­ge across time. The­se ques­ti­ons are infor­med by more gene­ral stances and under­stan­dings of histo­ry (may­be coded in Lévesque’s cen­tral cog­wheel of “his­to­ri­cal con­scious­ness”) and will gene­ra­te dif­fe­rent forms of ori­en­ta­ti­on and nar­ra­ting. This does not mean that the initi­al stance deter­mi­nes the out­co­me of the sto­ry, ren­de­ring his­to­ri­cal thin­king a mat­ter of self-affir­ma­ti­on — not at all. A per­son inqui­ring in tra­di­tio­nal will look for an ori­gin for some­thing valid and might — via his­to­ri­cal thin­king and rese­arch — learn of a quite dif­fe­rent ori­gin. The mode of mea­ning-making will still be tra­di­tio­nal, but the con­cre­te histo­ry will have chan­ged. But peo­p­le might also be forced to chan­ge their pat­tern in the pro­cess, e.g. lear­ning of the limits of exem­pla­ry thin­king when gai­ning insight into fun­da­men­tal chan­ge, and thus “pro­gress” in a way from exem­pla­ry to gene­tic sensemaking.
  3. The hig­hest niveau, howe­ver, will be rea­ched not by final­ly arri­ving at the gene­tic forms of thin­king and the respec­ti­ve com­pe­ten­ci­es, but by com­ple­men­ting the abili­ty to reco­gni­ze, distin­gu­ish and app­ly the dif­fe­rent for­ma with a trans­gres­sing abili­ty to reflect on the natu­re, value and limits of this (and other) typo­lo­gies them­sel­ves. Only on this niveau (at this stage) are peo­p­le ful­ly at com­mand of their his­to­ri­cal reflec­tion. They can address the limits socie­tal­ly accept­ed con­cepts and ter­mi­no­lo­gy pose and sug­gest new or amen­ded ones, etc. In the graph abo­ve, this is sym­bo­li­zed by the addi­tio­nal focus to the rubrics of Lévesque’s table, mark­ed by the blue rings.
Anmer­kun­gen /​ Refe­ren­ces
  1.   Léves­que, Sté­pha­ne: Remo­ving the “Past”: Deba­tes Over Offi­ci­al Sites of Memo­ry. In: Public Histo­ry Weekly 6 (2018) 29, DOI: dx​.doi​.org/​1​0​.​1​5​1​5​/​p​h​w​-​2​018 – 12570. The­re also is a Ger­man and a French ver­si­on. []
  2. The table can be found under the same address as the ori­gi­nal con­tri­bu­ti­on, down the page []
  3. Rüsen’s “cri­ti­cal” type of nar­ra­ting does not real­ly fit into the typo­lo­gy, pre­sen­ting not a new logic of inter­con­nec­ting tem­po­ral infor­ma­ti­on, but mere­ly de-elgi­ti­mi­zing others. In 1988 alre­a­dy, Bodo von Bor­ries com­men­ted on this and pre­sen­ted a gra­phi­cal con­cept of the inter­re­la­ti­on of the dif­fe­rent types, in which a “cri­ti­cal” type was pla­ced bet­ween both the tra­di­tio­nal and the exem­pla­ry and the lat­ter and the gene­tic, thus assig­ning it the func­tion of a cata­lyst of deve­lo­p­ment (Bor­ries, Bodo von (1988): Geschichts­ler­nen und Geschichts­be­wusst­sein. Empi­ri­sche Erkun­dun­gen zu Erwerb und Gebrauch von His­to­rie. 1. Aufl. Stutt­gart: Klett, p. 61; cf.  Kör­ber, Andre­as (2015): His­to­ri­cal con­scious­ness, his­to­ri­cal com­pe­ten­ci­es – and bey­ond? Some con­cep­tu­al deve­lo­p­ment within Ger­man histo­ry didac­tics. Online ver­füg­bar unter http://​www​.pedocs​.de/​v​o​l​l​t​e​x​t​e​/​2​0​1​5​/​1​0​8​1​1​/​p​d​f​/​K​o​e​r​b​e​r​_​2​0​1​5​_​D​e​v​e​l​o​p​m​e​n​t​_​G​e​r​m​a​n​_​H​i​s​t​o​r​y​_​D​i​d​a​c​t​i​c​s​.​pdf, p. 14f.). In the new ver­si­on of his “His­to­rik”, Rüsen pres­ents a simi­lar ver­si­on. Cf. Rüsen, Jörn (2013): His­to­rik. Theo­rie der Geschichts­wis­sen­schaft. Köln: Böhlau, p. 260. Eng­lish: Rüsen, Jörn (2017): Evi­dence and Mea­ning. A Theo­ry of His­to­ri­cal Stu­dies. Unter Mit­ar­beit von Dia­ne Kerns und Katie Digan. New York, NY: Berg­hahn Books Incor­po­ra­ted (Making Sen­se of Histo­ry Ser, v.28), p. 198. []
  4.  Schrei­ber, Wal­traud; Kör­ber, Andre­as; Bor­ries, Bodo von; Kram­mer, Rein­hard; Leut­ner-Ram­me, Sibyl­la; Mebus, Syl­via et al. (2007): His­to­ri­sches Den­ken. Ein Kom­pe­tenz-Struk­tur­mo­dell (Basis­bei­trag). In: Andre­as Kör­ber, Wal­traud Schrei­ber und Alex­an­der Schö­ner (Hg.): Kom­pe­ten­zen his­to­ri­schen Den­kens. Ein Struk­tur­mo­dell als Bei­trag zur Kom­pe­tenz­ori­en­tie­rung in der Geschichts­di­dak­tik. Neu­ried: Ars Una Ver­lags-Gesell­schaft (Kom­pe­ten­zen, 2), S. 17 – 53; Kör­ber, Andre­as (2012): Gra­du­ie­rung his­to­ri­scher Kom­pe­ten­zen. In: Miche­le Bar­ri­cel­li und Mar­tin Lücke (Hg.): Hand­buch Pra­xis des Geschichts­un­ter­richts. His­to­ri­sches Ler­nen in der Schu­le, Bd. 1. Schwalbach/​Ts.: Wochen­schau Ver­lag (Wochen­schau Geschich­te), S. 236 – 254.; Kör­ber, Andre­as (2015): His­to­ri­cal con­scious­ness, his­to­ri­cal com­pe­ten­ci­es – and bey­ond? Some con­cep­tu­al deve­lo­p­ment within Ger­man histo­ry didac­tics. Online ver­füg­bar unter http://​www​.pedocs​.de/​v​o​l​l​t​e​x​t​e​/​2​0​1​5​/​1​0​8​1​1​/​p​d​f​/​K​o​e​r​b​e​r​_​2​0​1​5​_​D​e​v​e​l​o​p​m​e​n​t​_​G​e​r​m​a​n​_​H​i​s​t​o​r​y​_​D​i​d​a​c​t​i​c​s​.​pdf, pp. 39ff []
  5.  Kör­ber, Andre­as (2016): Sinn­bil­dungs­ty­pen als Gra­du­ie­run­gen? Ver­such einer Klä­rung am Bei­spiel der His­to­ri­schen Fra­ge­kom­pe­tenz. In: Kat­ja Leh­mann, Micha­el Wer­ner und Ste­fa­nie Zabold (Hg.): His­to­ri­sches Den­ken jetzt und in Zukunft. Wege zu einem theo­re­tisch fun­dier­ten und evi­denz­ba­sier­ten Umgang mit Geschich­te. Fest­schrift für Wal­traud Schrei­ber zum 60. Geburts­tag. Ber­lin, Müns­ter: Lit Ver­lag (Geschichts­di­dak­tik in Ver­gan­gen­heit und Gegen­wart, 10), S. 27 – 41. []
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Weise, Mara (29.6.2018): “Zur Förderung von Zeitbewusstsein”. Vortrag auf dem FUER-Nachwuchs-Kolloquium 28. – 30. Juni 2018 an der Katholischen Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt

30. Juni 2018 Andreas Körber Keine Kommentare

Wei­se, Mara (29.6.2018): “Zur För­de­rung von Zeit­be­wusst­sein”. Vor­trag auf dem FUER-Nach­wuchs-Kol­lo­qui­um 28. – 30. Juni 2018 an der Katho­li­schen Uni­ver­si­tät Eichstätt-Ingolstadt

Stork, Annika (29.6.2018): “Perspektivensensibilität innerhalb des Geschichtsunterrichts”. Vortrag auf dem FUER-Nachwuchs-Kolloquium 28. – 30. Juni 2018 an der Katholischen Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt

29. Juni 2018 Andreas Körber Keine Kommentare

Stork, Anni­ka (29.6.2018): “Per­spek­ti­ven­sen­si­bi­li­tät inner­halb des Geschichts­un­ter­richts”. Vor­trag auf dem FUER-Nachwuchs-Kolloquium
28. – 30. Juni 2018 an der Katho­li­schen Uni­ver­si­tät Eichstätt-Ingolstadt

Vortrag im Kolloquium “Geschichte und Öffentlichkeit” an der Universität Bielefeld am 27.6.2018

28. Juni 2018 Andreas Körber Keine Kommentare

Kör­ber, Andre­as (27.6.2018): “Die Kom­pe­tenz­ori­en­tie­rung — eine Sack­gas­se? Nein!” Vor­trag und Streit­ge­spräch mit Jür­gen Gunia im Rah­men des Kol­lo­qui­ums “Geschich­te und Öffent­lich­keit” der Fakul­tät für Geschichts­wis­sen­schaf­ten, Phi­lo­so­phie und Theo­lo­gie der Uni­ver­si­tät Bielefeld.

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