KEYNOTE PRESENTATION, FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2013, FROM 6 PM TO 8 PM, ATHERTON HĀLAU, BISHOP MUSEUM
PRESENTATION: Sites of Conscience: Opening Dialogue on Contested Histories and Contemporary Issues
6 pm – 8 pm, Atherton Hālau, Bishop Museum
Museums, historic sites, and cultural centers are frequently charged with presenting highly sensitive information to the general public through their exhibits and educational programs. Liz Ševčenko has had a wealth of experience in this area. Currently, she is the director of the Guantánamo Public Memory Project at the Institute for the Study of Human Rights, Columbia University; the founding director of the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience (1999–2010), and vice president of programming at the Lower East Side Tenement Museum (1999–2005), all located in New York City. In her keynote talk, Ms. Ševčenko will describe how she and her organizations were able to represent the perspectives and experiences of more than one community group. Furthermore, each organization had specific historic events, government policies, and local social problems it needed to address. What strategies did she learn from her experiences? How can institutions successfully and responsibly present conflicting views significant to the people involved and relevant to others? What must we change to meet the divergent needs of diverse communities and to work collaboratively in effective ways? These are a few questions she will address in her presentation.
Ševčenko has granted HCH permission to give our supporters a sneak peek at her latest article, which is set to be published in the forthcoming The Oxford Handbook of Public History. Read her article here.
Speaker: Liz Ševčenko
Director, Guantánamo Public Memory Project
The Institute for the Study of Human Rights, Columbia University, New York
As the director of the Guantánamo Public Memory Project, Liz Ševčenko works to build public awareness of the long history of the US naval station at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, before and after 9-11, and fosters dialogue on the future of this place, its people, and its policies. She was the founding director of the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience, where she helped to build a network of historic sites that foster public dialogue on pressing contemporary issues. Also, as vice president for programs at the Lower East Side Tenement Museum, she developed exhibits and educational activities that connect the dramatic stories of the neighborhood’s immigrants past and present.