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Intercultural
Lexicon

Culture-Civilisation

The concept of culture has changed in the course of time.

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Modernity

The concept of modernity can be analysed from various points of view. A sociological perspective sees modernity as the historical era arising from feudal society’s profound transformation processes and that, starting with the Protestant Reformation, sees the emergence of the new bourgeoisie..

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Cultural Pluralism, The Challenge of our Time

“Cultural pluralism” is a recent concept in Europe to the extent that many do not know what it means.

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Democracy

In the Greek polis the meaning of the term “democracy” implied the government of a vast majority of the people, the “plebs”, as opposed to the aristocracy.

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Islamism

Islamism is a highly militant mobilizing ideology selectively developed out of Islam’s scriptures, texts, legends, historical precedents, organizational experiences and present-day grievances, all as a defensive reaction against the long-term erosion of Islam’s primacy over the public...

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Reset
A month of ideas.
Giancarlo Bosetti Editor-in-chief
Association for dialogue and intercultural understanding

History

Storia e Presente

Con Roman Herzog la grande perdita di un uomo di dialogo

MP

Roman Herzog, ex Presidente della Repubblica Federale Tedesca, è morto il 10 gennaio 2017. Membro del partito dell’Unione Cristiano-Democratica di Germania (CDU), Herzog è stato il primo presidente eletto dopo la riunificazione della Germania.


History and Remembrance

On the Centenary of Armenian Genocide
Again a war of Words and Anniversaries

Matteo Tacconi

The centenary of the Armenian genocide will go down in history, if for no other reason that Pope Francis’ words will still echo powerfully over the days and years to come. Many things have been said and written about Jorge Bergoglio’s speech and there is no need to add anything. Here the issue of the genocide’s centenary starts from a different perspective, to be more specific from a location; Gallipoli.


History and Politics

Roman Herzog's death: the big loss of a man of dialogue

MP

Roman Herzog, former President of the Federal Republic of Germany, died on January 10th, 2017. A member of the Christian-Democratic Union party (CDU), Herzog was the first president elected after German reunification in 1990. He was also a member and president of the Federal Constitutional Court as well as minister for Culture and Education. During his mandate at the Constitutional Court, he intensely devoted his work to immigration and integration policies for minorities.


Opinion

Trivializing the Holocaust

Eric Salerno

As the people of Israel were honoring the victims of the Holocaust (April 16) and in the rest of the world people were remembering the day in which the gates of Auschwitz were opened, Israel’s Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman chose to offend memory and narrative for mere political reasons. He, as other Israeli leaders including Yair Lapid of the centrist party Yesh Atid (“There is a future”) criticized the request by 16 European Union foreign ministers to label Israeli products made beyond the 1949 armistice line as “Made in the West Bank.” A legitimate attack (from the point of those that sustain the ongoing process of colonization of the Palestinian territories) if not for the idea offered by the man responsible for the foreign policy of that country.


History and Politics

Turkey, Beyond the Armenian Genocide Debate

Verda Özer

“Prime Minister Erdoğan’s statement of condolence to the Armenians was a milestone in Turkey’s history.” This was the first sentence of my column in daily Hürriyet on April 26 last year. The then Prime Minister Erdoğan had made an unprecedented move in Turkish history by issuing an official statement offering condolences to Armenians on April 24, the 99th anniversary of the Armenian massacres. This year, however, April 24 arrives in Turkey in a totally different atmosphere. The declaration of Pope Francis last Sunday that “the Armenian Genocide is the first genocide of the 20th century” and the resolution adopted by the European Parliament last week urging Turkey to recognize the genocide have rekindled the longstanding genocide debate in the country.


First World War

Sarajevo 1914-2014, When Memory Divides

Rodolfo Toè

SARAJEVO – Nowadays the body of the young man, who, a century ago, ended the lives of Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife Sofia sparking an escalation that was to result in World War I, lies in Ciglane, a suburb in central Sarajevo. The body lies in a small chapel with no markings, and is not even shown in tourist guides. The words on the grave written in Cyrillic read: “blessed is he who lives forever as he was not born in vain.”


European Islam and Arab Revolutions

Revisiting Historical Relations between Europe and the Islamic World: Three Fertilizing Periods

Mohammed Hashas, LUISS University of Rome

History says a lot about the relationships between Europe and the “broad Middle East,” to preliminarily use the term to mean the Islamic majority countries of North Africa and the Middle East (MENA), and a good part of Asia – from Morocco to Indonesia. The dichotomy of comparing a geographical entity, Europe, with a religious entity, Islam, bears a lot of historical-political tension, and simultaneously conveys the mindset that accepts comparing two entities on two different grounds. Such a “wrong” and “politicized” way of comparisons needs to change, seeing the changes taking place in the Mediterranean basin and world politics.


Middle East

Sabra and Shatila Massacre, the Israeli State Archives Publish the Kahan Report

Ilaria Romano

Several days following the September 28, 1982 massacre of Sabra and Shatila, the Israel Council of Ministers decided to establish an investigative inquiry commission to probe and to establish Israel’s responsibilities for the events in the Palestinian refugee camps of Beirut. The report of the Commission chaired by Yitzhak Kahan, former head of the Supreme Court, together with Aharon Barak, Supreme Court Justice, and General Yona Efrat, was complete on February 8, 1983. Thirty years later, the Israeli State archives have published the report in full.


IT AR Europe's neighbors

The Islam of the Balkans, an unknown galaxy

Mattia Del Conero

In spite of its varied nature, there is one common characteristic shared by most Muslims in the Balkans. Nowadays, Islam is deeply entrenched in identity. In many cases there is a tangible link between adherence to Islam, belonging to an ethnic community and “faith” in a national cause. The explanation for this phenomenon lies in the conflicts of the nineties and, in a broader sense, in the process involving the disintegration of Yugoslavia.


IT AR Europe's neighbors

Europe or Turkey; where are the Balkans going?

Interview with Stefano Bianchini, president of the Institute for Central-Eastern Europe and the Balkans in Forlì

Twenty years after the death of Yugoslavia, what is the situation in the various states that inherited its legacy? What are the prospects of European integration and how much of a burden are the memories of the wars? We posed these questions to Stefano Bianchini, professor of Eastern European History at Bologna University and president of the Institute for Central-Eastern Europe and the Balkans in Forlì.


IT Arab Democracy

No, Bush was not right

D. C. P.

The New York Times, The Economist, Time, Le Monde. The best and most authoritative newspapers in the world have entered the arena to reopen the great debate. Are Islam and democracy compatible? These are the analyses of the West’s most important opinion makers (from Friedman to Zakaria, from Benhabib to Dowd), also attempting to answer another question, Do the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions prove that George W. Bush was right?An article by Daniele Castellani Perelli


IT The Arab «1989»

Today’s models? The Iranian Green Wave and the Turkish AKP

Amara Lakhous

In Arab societies today, the reference model is not Khomeini’s Iran but instead the Iran of the young members of the Green Wave seen two years ago. I also believe that elites, especially Islamist ones, observe Erdogan’s Turkey with interest and admiration. The great challenges posed by the present consist in conciliating democracy and Islam, traditions and modernity, the past and the future.


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