28 February 2011

Educators' Workshop on teaching the TRC held at Constitution Hill

On Saturday 26 February 2011, the South African History Archive (SAHA) held a pilot workshop for Grade 11 and 12 history educators on teaching the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) in the classroom. The workshop was held at the Conference Room near the Ramparts (Old Fort) at Constitution Hill. The workshop was well attended, reflecting a resounding concern from history educators on how to address this controversial side of South Africa's past.

The workshop enabled educators to consider the central questions emerging from the TRC: does truth enable reconciliation? How do we resolve the unfinished business of this dark past? The TRC was compared and contrasted with similar commissions and proceedings worldwide, specifically the post-World War II Nuremburg Trials, reflecting the phenomenon of using amnesty for perpetrators to help South Africans come closer to the sordid truth of apartheid's political machinery. The workshop was exhilarating for participants, who received resources to disseminate in their classrooms, spread throughout around Gauteng. SAHA is grateful to Constitution Hill for hosting both the workshop and the current exhibition, The Battle Against Forgetting, incorporating a range of SAHA archives, mounted and illuminated within the appropriate milieu of the Ramparts. The exhibition will be displayed until 31 March 2011. This workshop was made possible through the generosity of the Foundation for Human Rights (FHR).

SAHA workshops

Further TRC-related workshops will be held for learners in the lead-up to Human Rights Day. In 2011, SAHA will continue to run educators' workshops aimed to enrich and empower history teachers in their classrooms. Themes include primary sources in the classroom, oral history methodologies for learners, and heritage.

SAHA / SABC Truth Commission Special Report Multimedia Product

This product has been developed to enrich the study of South African history and the field of transitional justice, with the aim of contributing to making the findings of the TRC more accessible to the public. Due to limited funding, the product is currently only being distributed to South African universities at higher education institutions and South African non-profit organisations working to support history, heritage and reconciliation education, outreach initiatives, as well as the transitional justice sector, in the wake of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). In order to enable greater access to the product, a list of all organisations receiving free copies of the product will be published on the SAHA website, and individuals requesting access to the product will be directed to organisations in their area in order to make use of the product.

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