Creating a Living Archive of Shared Humanity: FB Library/Database of Remembrance and Human Rights

April 2018

The FB Library/Database of Remembrance and Human Rights has a central mission: to research, document, and share humanity’s extraordinary stories of resistance in order to preserve human dignity and to create a more just and humane world. (The project is named in honor of German jurist and campaigner for human rights Dr. Fritz Bauer.) People everywhere, often under extreme conditions, struggle for their personal dignity. It is our task to remember this fight and, at the same time, to strengthen the respect of civil liberties and human rights. We accomplish this goal by recounting the extraordinary global history of resistance and the pursuit of human rights, inscribing memories deeply. Doing so, we reject impunity for human rights violators and champion the ethic of accountability. In 2017 we hope to launch the FB Database. This unique portal, like the most effective museum, is not constructed to keep knowledge stored, but rather dedicated to pushing stories of resistance out into the world, to change it for the better by altering the way citizens conceive of the choices they have when responding to oppression. Entries will be consistently structured, and combined with visual, audio, and documentary evidence. Augmenting the FB Database (in 2018) will be the print and digital FB Library. These 160-page volumes—also aimed at a general audience, particularly young people—will explore select stories of courage in meditative depth. We convene a seminar to discuss project structure and related concerns, including the question of how a curriculum might generate moral and intellectual courage.