The President of Bauhaus University Weimar in Germany, Prof. Dr. Winfried Speitkamp, visited Namibia from 30 October to 3 November 2018. As part of a Programme of the German Federal Government, he held lectures in Windhoek and Swakopmund on the preservation of cultural heritage and memory cultures.
On 31 October, approximately fifty 11th grade learners at the Deutsche Höhere Privatschule Windhoek discussed with Prof. Speitkamp the history of colonialism and the development of memory cultures in Germany as well as in former German colonies.
In the evening, Prof. Speitkamp gave a talk at the Namibia Scientific Society in Windhoek on “Colonialism in collective memory. A comparison of European and African Memory Cultures”. Over hundred guests listened and engaged in a lively, intensive and at the same time respectful discussion and expressed their different perspectives and opinions.
On 1 November, Namibian experts from various institutions, such as the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture, universities and museums, met Prof. Speitkamp at the Goethe-Institut Namibia and exchanged information and views on cultural preservation.
In Swakopmund, Prof. Speitkamp took part in the celebrations on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Swakopmund Scientific Society and held a speech on “Cultural Memory and Memory Cultures” on 2 November.
In conclusion of his visit to Namibia, Prof. Speitkamp said: “I learned a lot about Namibia and the Namibian-German relations and hope to have contributed to the public discourse on how to engage with the shared history”