Journey from knowledge to empathy 

Towards a better awareness of oppression and its threats 

Mission statement

During the visit of the Belgian delegation in Potsdam last October, a set of questions was elaborated.

The questions allow pupils to interview people who experienced oppression and this as well during fascist regime/ communism in Germany or any other non-democratic regime in the world.

The fixed frame of questions should allow us to compare the testimonies and teach us more on the origins and consequences of oppression in the world and this as well in the past as today.

The final result should be double:

- An exhibition with the most touching testimonies, big info panels with the resumé of what these people lived.

- A booklet with all the testimonies emphasizing on the ways youngster can avoid to take part of in oppressing others.

The exhibition and booklet will be presented to the public outside the school and this as well in Potsdam and in Leuven. (e.g. Landstag of Brandenbug or the town hall of Leuven.)

The final conclusion should be double:

- To acknowledge the fact that Europe (and its institutions) provide us the necessary guarantees to its inhabitants that oppression will never occur within its borders;

- A  full list of action and idea’s one can implement in its own life to prevent acts of oppression towards others. 

 “We live the European normality but we don’t have to take this normality for granted.” 

Minister-President of Brandenburg Dietmar Woidke

Symbol of our project: white carnation.


On the first of May 1946 people of Potsdam wore a white carnation instead of the compulsory red one. They wanted to express their discontent about the fact that the SPD and KPD merged to SED. From the first of May onwards, many young people were arrested, among them many pupils of the Einsteinschule.


Garbrecht Müller was seventeen when he got arrested in 1946 and was convicted without trial to the prison camp of Sachenhausen. He was released on the 19th July 1948. Peter Runge was only sixteen when he was convicted and finally released on the 17th January 1950.

Now seventy years later the students of the Einstein Gymnasium Potsdam and Miniemeninstituut Leuven have chosen the white carnation as symbol for their European project: Journey from knowledge to empathy, towards a better awareness of oppression and its threats.