Aleksandra Stamenković

Current living place:
Belgrade, Serbia

Aleksandra Stamenković

Historian, Program coordinator at NGO C31 - Center for Developing Children’s Rights Culture (2008)

  • Former activities:

    History teacher on replacement at VI Belgrade Gymnasium (2009)
    Coordinator of several educational programs about history, Children’s Cultural Center, Belgrade (2005-2007)

  • My organization:
    C31 is founded by the multidisciplinary team of young professionals with aims to:
    • Enhance implementation of child rights with special focus on child participation, right to quality education and culture
    • Encourage children to think critically about society, reflect on issues of intolerance and responsibility with use of history as starting point and foster values of human rights and tolerance
    • Encourage children to express themselves through different media

  • Examples of concrete activities I have organized/am organizing in the field of “dealing with the past”:
    • Long term initiative “Museum of the Past for the Future” in cooperation with the Memorial Centre “Kragujevacki oktobar” and Regional Office of the Ministry of Education – aimed to develop a platform for education in human right and tolerance by use of history of WWII and recent past (2012)
    • Time Travel to Belgrade in WWII – Educational program based on use of history of Jewish people in Serbia during WWII and “time travel method” as a starting point for discussion about contemporary issues of discrimination, tolerance and solidarity (2012 -, in cooperation with Fund B92)

  • Concrete challenges I am facing in my “dealing with the past”-related work:

    Educational system in Serbia does not create enough space for dialogue on human rights values and current social issues, neither for critical reflection on history, individual and collective identity and reconciliation. On the other side, schools are not immune on intolerance, violence and influences of right wind ideologies. On a wider scale this situation in education is reflection and consequence of the luck of political will and social consensus on facing difficult past that is inevitable for core transformation of the society and building democracy.

  • My personal link to/interest for the topic of “dealing with difficult pasts”:
    I believe that the purpose of learning history is to get insights and reflect upon mistakes from the past to understand their roots and prevent that they happen again. Historical experience of crimes, destruction, humiliation, violation of human rights and dignity can be a strong tool for building tolerant humanity. My task as a historian is to encourage young people to understand and reflect on history, think critically and to stand up against every form of violence and discrimination.