Bergen-Belsen International Summer School 2023: Perspectives on Perpetratorship

As a part of the „Houses of Darkness. Images of a contested European Memory“ (HICE) project, Bergen-Belsen Memorial will host a summer school programme from August 18th till August 24th, 2023. We aim to gather international graduate & PhD students and young professionals who have due to their work a relation to Bergen-Belsen and it`s history. Building on our long-standing experience with student groups in different settings, we are convinced that we benefit from working with people from different professional and cultural backgrounds. Participants are expected to develop their own ideas and express themselves in different ways. Activities may include writing short texts, photo- and videography and social media.

During this year’s Bergen-Belsen International Summer School we will focus on the topic of perpetratorship in the context of Nazi-persecution and in particular the Bergen-Belsen camps. We aim to reflect and detangle some of the complex issues that arise when focusing on perpetratorship. Topics include but are not limited to:


  • Individual responsibility and leeway
  • Motivation and dynamics of perpetration
  • Reception and perception of perpetrator accounts
  • Continuities of perpetrator careers and transitional justice
  • Atrocity images and the perpetrator gaze
  • Artistic exploration concerning perpetratorship

Mutual respect is an important value within all of our programmes. We strive to create a safe space for participants to share their views, questions and insights without the fear of being judged or discriminated against.


Registration for Bergen-Belsen Summer School


The working language of the Bergen-Belsen International Summer School is English. The participants’ language skills must be sufficient to enable them to understand the preparatory texts, follow the sessions and actively participate in the discussions. Participants must be 18 or older.


To apply for this year’s Summer School, we ask you to submit a video statement (max. 90 seconds) in which you tell us about yourselves, your expectations of the programme’s topic and what you could contribute. No creative limits are set on how you present your statement, but it should be in English. Please also submit your application by filling out this form. Registration will close on June 25, 2023.