“Tolerance is an understanding that people have the right to be different”
We are continuing to introduce you to DOCU/CLUB events which take place online under lockdown. DUMAy!, the travelling Docudays UA film club, visited the Kharkiv Specialized School № 75 for a screening and discussion.
19 January 2021

Tolerance (from Lat. tolerantia – resilience, endurance, patience) is a term which means toleration of different worldviews, ways of life, behaviors and customs. The opposite to tolerance is intolerance.


To communicate the meaning of this important term to students, Vladyslava Ilhova, the class teacher of grade 7C, invited the Yuriy Chumak, the moderator of the DUMAy! Docudays UA Media Education Film Club and the communicator of the Chuhuyiv Local Free-of-charge Secondary Legal Aid Center, to have a conversation.


The lawyer asked the children how they understood the word “tolerance.” The students mentioned “considerate treatment” and “respect” as synonyms. And one 7-grader answered, “Tolerance is an understanding that people have the right to be different.”


This definition, in Yuriy’s opinion, is the most appropriate to the meaning of the term tolerance. Because it is quite easy to respect people with similar views, but much more difficult to be tolerant of someone who is different.



Back in the 18th century, the French Enlightenment philosopher Voltaire said, “I do not share your beliefs, but I am prepared to give my life for your right to express them.” And today, in the endless ocean of various cultures, religions, opinions, ideas which belong to people from different countries, the lifebuoy of tolerance should come to the rescue.


The participants of the online event watched 2 animated movies, Overboard and Artificial Selection. These films were created by children and teenagers at masterclasses of the HUMRA project, which took place in Georgia, Russia, Ukraine, Belarus and Germany.


The animated movie Overboard covers the topic of fakes and the xenophobia they produce. Artificial Selection demonstrates the importance of people in different social, age and professional categories living on our planet. As the society developed, people came to realize that Earth is not too big, it is our shared home, and all people are neighbors in it. And for humanity to develop successfully, everyone should find common ground.


In conclusion, the class teacher noted: “A contemporary civilized person should not just have knowledge. To achieve success in their life without wasting effort on conflicts and fights, it is reasonable for everyone to develop tolerance. It is a sign of a highly developed individual, group, society in general.”


The DOCU/CLUB—For Reforms! project is funded by the European Union and the National Endowment for Democracy.

 Heorhiy Kobzar 

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