"What is the history of Europe? As Tony Judt put it: "The continent of Europe was once an intricate, interwoven tapestry of overlapping languages, religions, communities and nations. Many of its cities (…) at the intersection of old and new imperial boundaries (…) were truly multicultural societies avant le mot, where Catholics, Orthodox, Muslims, Jews and others lived in familiar juxtaposition".
Let us refrain from idealizing this old Europe. This melting pot was periodically torn apart by riots, massacres and pogroms, however it was real and left a vivid memory.
Today, after the experience of two totalitarianisms, Nazi and Communist, which devastated Europe, the question arises how to construct the European historical narrative. Should it be a "great unifying narrative", as some claim, or rather a plural history, made of the contributions of each European Nation to the identity and axiological foundations of the construction of the European Union.
Natolin is a compendium of significant moments in European history, glorious ones in the Age of Enlightenment, as well as tragic ones at the time of the two European totalitarianisms. It is in this symbolic place that the European Parliament decided to naturally establish a Chair on European History and Civilization, as an intellectual foundation for European Studies."