21 February, 2022

CHAPTER Project

Challenging propaganda through Remembrance

CHAPTER Project

Challenging propaganda through Remembrance

 

What is Chapter?

« Chapter – Challenging propaganda through remembrance », is a project aiming at casting a light on propaganda before and during WWII, focusing on its role to enforce the concept of “enemy” – from national and ethnic groups to political opponents and social groups. The research on nazi-fascist propaganda is meant to be actualized also in the present, when a mix of migration and economic crisis brought to an increase in xenophobic and populist trends all over Europe.   

Since 2014 Europe is in fact facing the worst humanitarian crisis of refugees since World War II (WWII), the majority of them fleeing from Syria and Libya, while the economic crisis has been causing cuts to social inclusion, education and healthcare programmes. 

Populist groups’ media depicts third-country nationals as exploiters of the welfare system while criminalizing civil society organizations in solidarity, thus fuelling social tensions into organized violence against people and institutions. An in-depth analysis shows that current propaganda roots in methodologies and tools developed under totalitarian regimes. Nazism and Fascism emphasized those features characterizing the public discourse during World War I and its aftermath such as nationalism, hatred of the enemy and dehumanization: all of that contributed to lay the groundwork for WWII. 

The project wants to draw attention also on the role of grassroots media and peace organizations in challenging propaganda through innovative communication methodologies and tools, both in the past and present.

Project outputs – such as researches, infographics, an online campaign – were realized by participants who acted as Remembrance messengers, in order to relate past events to current trends through different activities taking place in Italy, Bulgaria, Greece, Austria, Poland and Catalunya.

It is a project of Servizio Civile Internazionale Italia in partnership with CVS Bulgaria, SCI Hellas, SCI Austria, SCI Catalunya, OWA Poland, SCI France, Utilapu (Hungary), SCI Germany, UNITED (Hungary), Centro Studi Sereno Regis (Italy) and DINAMO (Italy) and co-financed by the Europe for Citizens Programme of the European Union. 

8 events have been carried out within this project:

  • The first steps: Preparatory Meeting and Training for Multipliers
  • Five remembrance Week in Italy, Poland, Greece, Austria and Catalonia.
  • Final event in Rome

Five Remembrance weeks and a final event

From June till October 2021, five Countries five Remembrance Weeks.  For ten days, 25 participants to the activity held in Italy, Poland, Austria, Greece and Catalunya reflected on the historical aspects connecting the hosting country to the nazi-fascist regimes – sharing the material previously collected through archives, websites, songs – and analyzed the use and the impact of propaganda on the events. At the same time, they researched the role of grassroots media and peace organizations in responding to the regimes’ propaganda. As a result of each Remembrance Week, participants realized 10 sets of infographics on 10 relevant topics, previously identified. 

The final event of Chapter project was held in Rome on the weekend of 6th and 7th November: historical, intellectual and militant subjects, from different experiences and different areas of the world met in three events open to the public, in different spaces of the city. 

Chapter on social media

To make the project last and to allow those who could not participate in the events to know a little more, we publish content regularly on our social networks. Would you like to know more about Chapter?

 

Thank you to Carole Corbeau from SCI Italy for submitting this article.

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