December 12, 2016
December 12, 2016, Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan – The Global Centre for Pluralism, in partnership with the Central Asian Studies Institute (CASI) at the American University of Central Asia, the French Institute for Central Asian Studies (IFEAC), Bishkek Humanities University and Osh State University hosted a Forum on History and Memory in Kyrgyzstan: Toward an Inclusive Society in Bishkek.
The Forum featured two international panel discussions moderated by Kyrgyzstani and international experts and featuring local researchers from across Kyrgyzstan. The speakers discussed the theme of building inclusive historical narratives that reflect Kyrgyzstan’s diversity, inspired by research undertaken as part of the Centre’s History and Memory in Kyrgyzstan Project.
“All modern societies are diverse in some way. A deeper understanding of the past is an important route to greater inclusion and national dialogue. The Centre is pleased to engage in this rich discussion with participants on the importance of history and memory in advancing pluralism in Kyrgyzstan,” said Jayne Barlow, Director of Programs with the Global Centre for Pluralism.
Canadian Ambassador Shawn Steil further stated that, “as a country, one of Canada’s greatest strengths is our respect for pluralism and diversity. At a time of growing divisions, fear of difference and threats of extremism, dialogue and respect are needed now more than ever to build open and resilient societies. The Canadian Embassy, through the Canada Fund for Local Initiatives, is a proud supporter of the History and Memory Project, and the promotion of peaceful pluralism, inclusion, and respect for diversity in Kyrgyzstan.”
About the History and Memory Project:
Kyrgyzstan is a vibrant, multi-ethnic and multi-faith society. The History and Memory in Kyrgyzstan Project issued a national call for papers to explore these aspects of Kyrgyzstan’s history and to identify potential lessons from past experiences for fostering greater inclusion today. Based on their proposals, eight Kyrgyzstani researchers were selected to research and write short papers on an aspect of Kyrgyzstan’s rich history of diversity, aided by local and international mentors who encouraged them to engage critically with the past.
The History and Memory Project was implemented with support from the Government of Canada.
About the Global Centre for Pluralism:
Founded by His Highness the Aga Khan in partnership with the Government of Canada, the Global Centre for Pluralism is an international research and education centre located in Ottawa, Canada. Inspired by Canada’s experience as a diverse and inclusive country, the Centre was created to advance positive responses to the challenge of living peacefully and productively together in diverse societies.