From Exodus to Resistance: Russian Heroes of WWII

The Russian House in Brussels hosted the first of two international roundtables on June 3 on the occasion of the eighty years since the outbreak of World War II – “From Exodus to Resistance: Russian Heroes of WWII”. The round table discussion was devoted to the problem of forming a historical memory of the Second World War and to the resistance movement in Belgium and Europe. During the opening speech, Viktor Moskvin, director of the Alexander Solzhenitsyn House of Russia Abroad, emphasized the contribution of Russian fighters against fascism to the liberation of European countries and noted that even the term "Resistance" appeared for the first time in a newspaper published by Boris Vildé, a participant in the "Exodus".

The roundtable was attended by: Marina Sorokina, Head of the History Department of Russian Foreign Affairs at the Alexander Solzhenitsyn House of Russia Abroad, along with her colleague Ksenia Sak, a leading researcher of the organization; Irina Antanashevich, professor at the Department of Slavonics, Faculty of Philology at the University of Belgrade; Vladimir Ronin, lecturer at the Antwerp campus of the Catholic University of Leuven; and Sergei Dybov, president of the French association “Mémoire Russe”.

Speakers from Russia, Serbia and Belgium discussed how the events of the war years and the resistance to Nazism were and are reflected in the national historical memory of people – in politics, in the actions of different states and societies, in literary works, in visual texts - from cinema to comics, in places of remembrance and in monuments. The roundtable was attended by spectators from different countries - from the US to Turkey.

The second roundtable discussion "International Conference: The Collective Historical Memory: The Resistance Movement" will take place on June 21 at 2 p.m. at the site of the Russian House in Brussels. The meeting is organized in collaboration with the municipalities of the province of Liège in Belgium and the government of the Russian region of Samara. The event highlights the importance of the Belgian resistance movement to the history of the Second World War, the organization and leadership of the anti-Nazi underground in Belgium, the role of Soviet soldiers and officers fleeing Nazi captivity in the hostilities of the partisan army in the regions of Liège, Luxembourg, Limburg and other regions of the country.