Nazi Forced Labour. History and Aftermath. International Winter School for Educators

Nazi Forced Labour Documentation Centre Berlin-Schöneweide
Nazi Forced Labour Documentation Centre and the International Tracing Service (ITS)
10.02.2019 - 17.02.2019
Akim Jah

The winter school will provide a forum for educators who want to exchange ideas on methods and teaching practices regarding the topic of Nazi forced labour and its memory in postwar Europe from a transnational perspective. The focus of the winter school will be on civilian and Jewish forced labourers in Nazi Germany. We will also discuss how educators can work with documents from the ITS Digital Archive, which include multi-million page records on forced labour, post-war DPs and resettlement.

At the end of the Second World War, there were approximately 8 million Displaced Persons on German territory, among them a larger number of former forced labourers who came from all across Europe, trapped within the territory of the “Third Reich”, facing an uncertain future. During the war most of them suffered severe deprivation of their rights by regulations and contractual conditions; they were accommodated in barracks, malnourished and not able to return to their home countries during the war. After the war, many of them decided or were forced to go back home to societies that identified with the victors of the war and were embarrassed by a large number of “collaborators” who had been forced to work for the enemy’s war industry. A large number of former forced labourers did not return, but eventually emigrated to other countries.

The main goals of this winter school are:
- to discuss contemporary challenges for history educators in Europe and Israel, with a particular emphasis on teaching the history and memory of forced labour during the Second World War, including repatriation and emigration of former forced labourers;
- to explore the documentation of the International Tracing Service (ITS) and to identify material that offers particular potential for new educational projects;
- to encourage the exchange of ideas for joint projects between the winter school participants;
- to exchange methods of teaching the history of the Second World War and forced labour.

Who can apply?
Educators, teachers, multipliers, museum workers, advanced students in Public History and other relevant disciplines who live in Europe or Israel and have gained first experience in history and civic education. Since the project is going to be held in English, an advanced level of English is required.

Organizers: The Nazi Forced Labour Documentation Centre (part of the Foundation Topography of Terror) is located on the grounds of an almost completely intact former forced labour camp in Berlin-Schöneweide, built in an industrial district in 1943 , for over 2,100 individuals. The exhibitions, archives and educational programs focus on a forgotten victim group: about 8.4 million civilian laborers from all over Europe were forced to work for the Nazi regime during the Second World War.
The International Tracing Service (ITS) in Bad Arolsen is a centre for documenting National Socialist persecution and the fate of liberated survivors. Former victims of Nazism and their families receive information regarding incarceration, forced labour, and if available, postwar Allied assistance. With more than 30 million documents, the archives also provide a foundation for research and education. The ITS produces its own educational material and assists educators in their research and development of projects.

Application: Please send a CV and a short letter of motivation (not more than one page each – both in one single PDF file) to by August 31st 2018.

Participation is free of charge. The organizers will cover the costs for economy class travel, accommodation and meals for participants.


Akim Jah

International Tracing Service
Große Allee 5-9; 34454 Bad Arolsen

Nazi Forced Labour. History and Aftermath. International Winter School for Educators, 10.02.2019 – 17.02.2019 Berlin-Schöneweide, in: H-Soz-Kult, 16.05.2018, <>.
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