On Monday February 5, at Liceo Scientifico Da Vinci in Trento the second meeting before the students’ departure to Bosnia and Herzegovina took place. The floor was led by Marco Abram, editor and researcher at Osservatorio Balcani Caucaso e Transeuropa. Students were introduced to Bosnia and Herzegovina and Sarajevo contexts, to outline the history of a country starting from its capital city.
More precisely, they went through the main historical steps from the Ottoman to the Austro-Hungarian Empires, from the Assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in 1914 to the Olympics Games seven decades later. They also discussed about the 10-Year War in the Balkans and its consequences on current Bosnia. Besides the complex ethnic and demographic framework that portrays the country then and today, students tackled the issue of urbicide, not only remembering the siege and the organised resistance of its citizens, but also analysing the bombings of cultural sights, such as the Old Library in Sarajevo or the Old Bridge in Mostar. Despite the peace agreements, signed more than 20 years ago, ethnic divisions persist both in capital and rural areas. An example is the phenomenon of “two schools under one roof”, where buildings and children are separated on the basis of their faiths and ethnic group. Finally, some suggestions were given to students regarding music and documentaries about the current situation and the history of Sarajevo.