Дневник проекта, составленный участниками за 30 июля 2016

Last day of our program was dedicated to the presentation of 4th projects that we had prepared in the previous day. First group made an exhibition "How do historians from different countries interpret one and the same events?". Participants of this group drew several pictures with memorials and two portraits of Hitler and Stalin. They tried to show the 1937 world exhibition and 1939 non-aggression pact. Second group showed his view of history creating a comix and third group shot the movie. A game of third group reminded us about our two-weeks program in Russia and Germany. We remembered how we say "How are you?" in German and in Russian, if we can scream like an Yaroslavl bear, what we should wear in the Orthodox Church, how we can survive in a rainy or a sunny day and even if you had had a crush with a bicycle driver. In the end we had a lot of fun, sweets and good mood.

Olga and Darya

Дневник проекта, составленный участниками за 29 июля 2016

Hello dear diary, today was one of the best days during our stay in the Workcamp Jaroslavl/ Berlin: it was time to be totaly free creative! ;)
After a whole week of diffrent guided tours through museums, monuments, cemetaries and exhibitions we had to take over the part of managing our last two days in the camp. In the presentation of a self choosen topic we should outline our varied experiences we made from history over cultural meetings. But first I have to tell you some bit about todays morning.
Yes! Today we could start our day with a later breakfast at 9 o clock instead of early 8- very good for catching up some sleep from the last days :) After we had good German breakfast the whole group met in the seminar room in the upper floor. We had a short summary of the last days activities and talked about general stuff which works well in the group or what has to be talked about again. Afterwards we started a discussion on the basis of 4 questions: what we think was the most impressing experience, the best discovery but as well points which are still unclear for some participants. Here very fast the consequence was a one-hour-discussion if all involveds of the national socialism especially the central protagonists as well as all soldiers of the former German army (Wehrmacht) "deserve" a grave. A very difficult question for Germans to answer our Russian freinds. This little bit long communication ended in the question "Who wants to have peace on earth and whats your personal contribute for that?". Actual I was a little bit disappointed there wasn't a real output or even a conclusion after two hours of discussion.
Before we had lunch we got together in our project groups for the next two days. Who already had a good idea for a kind of group presentation was offering his/ her idea to the rest of the group to find some sympathizers for the realization. Four mixed teams with totally different approaches were founded. The team members agree on the content of their presentation very soon.
Over lunch time we all came together again for eating. There was a good Chilli con carne served.
Than the project groups were using the time till the evening to work on their topics together. Our group decided to make a kind of group game which involves the rest of the participants of the work camp. We found out some typical differences and similarities between Germany and Russia which we discovered during the time of workcamp and pack them up in some questions. We could nearly finish our game in the same evening so there was a free later evening for the members of our project group. As usual we spend the evening with talking and drinking some bear and wine together in the kitchen and in the seminar room.

Anna Ilina/Vivien Stillger

Дневник проекта, составленный участниками за 28 июля 2016

In the morning, we went to the German-Russian museum in Karlshorst. Guides showed us the exhibition in both Russian and English language. The museum is a place of history, since it is the house where the capitulation of Hitler Germany was signed in 1945.

The museum is run by both the Russian and German state. Hence, it was interesting to see how the second world war was presented as agreed by both parties. In contrast to the museums in Russia, critical topics for Russian history, such as Gulag and Soviet prisoners of war were also in focus.

After some discussions about the following program, we went to Potsdam to see the castle Sanssouci, built in the years 1745-1747. It was the residence of Friedrich II. , also known as Friedrich the Great or the "Kartoffelkönig". The nice weather and the beautiful view of the castle lead many to photoshootings and small rests. Apart from the amazing nature, there was a lot to see in the parc around Sanssouci, for example the Chinese House or the New Palais. In our freetime we split up into several groups and explored the city. Some went shopping , some went into the City centre of Berlin and others sat down for a little drink or two before returning to Erkner.
Marie Zachger

Дневник проекта, составленный участниками за 27 июля 2016

Today we left Erkner in order to go to Halbe, a little town, somewhere in Brandenburg, where the Volksbund has an educational center. Our guide Thomas walked us on a bumpy path, along the railway tracks, into a forest. What seemed to be just ordinary wilderness was actually a graveyard of Russian war prisoners of the first world war. Halbe used to be a center where many prisoners of war where located. The ones, who died under the bad conditions, were buried on a proper graveyard for them. Only in the time of socialist eastern Germany the cemetery was abandoned and forgotten, since these soldiers had officially been soldiers of czarist Russia. We did a little ceremony of remembrance there, before we headed back into town. After lunch we visited the “Waldfriedhof”, a cemetery of soldiers, fallen in World war II. Halbe was besieged in April 1945 by allied troops. Even though the war was almost over, the Wehrmacht refused to give up, therefore many people, civilians and soldiers died during the battle of Halbe. It was also very moving to learn about the life of some buried there. The gloomy atmosphere was underlined by the upcoming thunderstorm, which luckily ended before we headed back to the hostel, where we spend a relaxed evening while playing some games.

Дневник проекта, составленный участниками за 26 июля 2016

After breakfast the participants of our project went to the military cemetery of soviet soldiers. That place has monuments which are devoted to the deals of soviet people during the Second World War. The main monument is a soldier who holds a baby in one hand and has a sword in another. This sword breaks the fylfot that symbolizes the victory on the Nazi.

Later we went to the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe. In that place also was a museum. This museum gave us a really strong expression. Everyone felt a real fear of genocide. This exposition changed us and our views to this page of history. We realized that every person has to know that.

Filipp/Anna Kalugina

Дневник проекта, составленный участниками за 25 июля 2016

As always our day began after a looong sleep. Of course we are all intelligent human beings who care about their long and healthy sleep. This resulted in some members of the group interpreting the night's sleep as a nap of about two hours- making their eyes look like precious stones.
The reflection round in the mourning was thereby sure to be the height of our intellectual achievement.
We considered our past meetings to have been successful and were all delighted to hear that everyone was ready to further enlarge their perspective.
After traveling into town, it was time for everybody to explore the city on their own within small groups. The artful presentations later made it possible for us to reiterate the way the others had gone, all the pictures were manifestations of our experience and competence.

Marcel vom Bruch

Дневник проекта, составленный участниками за 23 июля 2016

No french solo expedition like on the previous morning. We set out to the Victory Park, which is one of the deepest metro stations of Moscow.
Once outside we are greeted by an impressive plaza, with a Victory Ark at our backs and a long open space in front separated in several levels each representing a year of the Great Motherland War. At the end, just before the museum itself, stands an impressive monument to St. George.
Once inside, our planned visit is cut short by a ceremony of induction into a russian military academy. After having improvised a short diorama tour, we are left with half an hour to look at this museum dedicated to soviet bravery and sacrifice, not nearly enough time to see everything.
Next we have to rush to the next stop : another museum, dedicated this time to the history of GULAGs. There we have lunch and a short debriefing about our previous visit. The visit of the GULAG museum itself is very interesting, although (as for every single museum we seem to visit) we don't have enough time to take it all in. The exhibition is a nice mix of cold official documentation and very personnal fates.
This visit is followed by a long and passionate discussion about Stalines GULAGs and regime in general.
Later in the evening we have dinner together with our museum guide and a half hour argument about who goes where when during free time, which ends with groups staying, groups going, groups separating, three hour walks through Moscow and general chaos.

Axel Varenne

Дневник проекта, составленный участниками за 22 июля 2016

Moscow's metro is know for its impressive architecture - the stations are sometimes even considered as "underground palasts" - and we started off the day at Kurskaya Metro Station which was built in 1938 and is one of the oldest metro stations in Moscow. Inside the station you recognize elements of the Stalin time, e. g. quotes from Soviet hymns. In addition, the interior design is rather rich and conveys the idea of victory of the Soviets. We then walked through the center of Moscow. We had our next stop at a piece of the Berlin Wall which is installed in front of the Andrei Sakharov Memorial Center. Later on, we passed the Lubyanka Building, former headquarter of the KGB, the main security agency for the Soviet Union from 1954 until its break-up in 1991. Today, the building houses the Border Guard Service of Russia, the Lubyana prison and one directorate of the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation. Furthermore, you can find a museum of the KGB inside the building.

Just before lunch we went inside the main cathedral in Moscow, Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, which is the tallest Orthodox Christian church in the world. The original church was destroyed on the order of Stalin in the 1930's - after the fall of the USSR, however, the new cathedral was rebuilt in the same design. What impressed me about this church was the pompous interior design with lots of gold and large paintings.

We had lunch at a café inside the GUM Department Store which is located by the Red Square, one of the largest shopping centers in Moscow which is also known for its classic Russian architecture. Due to very strong rainfalls, we wandered around the mall for a bit, before finally getting to see the Red Square which is where we took lots of photos together.

In the evening, we had fun discovering the area around Red Square where was held the annual "flower festival" and "jam festival".

We finished the day in a very nice restaurant with traditional Russian food and a couple of drinks.

Дневник проекта, составленный участниками за 21 июля 2016

In the morning we left to a school that was a hospital for German war prisoners. Today there is also a museum about the school and the prisoners. We went to a cemetery. There were German and French soldiers buried by soviet people. Our guide who works in the museum told us that there was a good relation between the population and the prisoners. They were there as workers, for example for streets or even as teachers.
Afterwards we went to Yaroslavl to the Pedagogical University named after K.D. Ushinsky to discuss our experiences with historians. There was a big discussion about several versions of history and we came to the conclusion that there is no truth and everything depends on the perspective and your point of view. The discussion made us think more critically about history and about what media tells us.
Then we had free time in Yaroslavl where we bought some souvenirs before we had dinner. After dinner we left to Moscow to continue our project.