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“The Roma Between Past and Future” Conference to be held in Amsterdam on 6 May


"The Roma Between Past and Future:  Reflections Upon Genocide, Recognition, and the Resurgence of Extremism and Anti-Gypsyism" conference will be held on 6 May 2012 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Since a few years Romani minorities throughout Europe have been faced with the resurgence of extremism and nationalism. In countries as diverse as Hungary, Italy, Bulgaria, Lithuania and the Czech Republic, Romani citizens have been attacked by their fellow citizens, which led to casualties and increased interethnic tensions. The governments of France, Italy and Germany have sent Romani migrants with and without EU citizenship back to their countries of origin. Anti-Gypsyism and Roma-phobic measures are on the rise and are often met with ambivalence by the politicians and authorities involved. When in 2010 EU commissioner Viviane Reding made an indirect reference to the Second World War, numerous critics stood up to blame her for making what they considered an impossible comparison between the current situation and Nazi deportations.

The conference The Roma between Past and Future reflects upon the comparison between the present-day situation of Romani minorities and what happened to them in the 1930s and 1940s. Is such a comparison possible at all? Why and how could or should such a comparison be made to reflect upon the contemporary situation of the Roma in Europe? Since 1945, various Romani and Sinti groups have been involved in a struggle to get the Nazi genocide of Sinti and Roma officially recognized. How does this struggle and the neglect of this genocide by society at large relate to contemporary public debates on the Roma's situation in Europe?

This conference aims at bringing Roma, Sinti, scholars, activists, advocates, politicians and policy makers together to discuss these timely topics. Roma from Hungary, the Netherlands and the Czech Republic will present their analyses of the contemporary situation in their countries. A Dutch Sinto who has survived the war will share his experiences with the audience. Scholars will reflect upon the importance of taking into account the circumstances of the 1930s and 1940s, as well as the post-war recognition struggle, for understanding the situation of Romani and Sinti minorities in contemporary Europe.

For more information and the conference program, please click here.

The Roma Between Past and Future

Reflections upon Genocide, Recognition and the Resurgence of Extremism and Anti-Gypsyism


Sunday, 6 May 2012

09.30 - 18.00

De Nieuwe Kerk - Eggertzaal

Amsterdam, The Netherlands