IAGS2017 Session 7

Day 2, 11 July 1630-1800 Session 7

Critical Genocide Studies and Prevention: Complexity and Everyday Prevention

Location W332, Level 3, Forgan Smith
Chair Ernesto Verdeja; University of Notre Dame
What is ‘Genocide Prevention’? The Case of Sudan and the Implications of Complexity
Authors Louise Wise, Queen Mary University of London
Abstract The prevention of genocide, according to Levene, requires 'not only a much broader engagement with the systemic sources of conflict in the contemporary world but a paradigmatic shift in our approach to the fundaments of human life on this planet.’ This paper explores the meaning and implications of this bold statement for the case of Sudan. Based on an interpretation of genocide in the country through the lens of complexity, that conceptualizes it as systemic and emergent rather than the product of a top-down ‘master-plan,’ I argue we are compelled to take seriously the radical implications of Levene’s claim. Our understanding of what it means to end or prevent genocide in Sudan has too often been siloed, decoupled from the broader economic and political processes that are deeply interwoven with its possibility, and constitutive of its logic and dynamics across the country. To think coherently about the practicalities and possibilities of ending and preventing genocide in Sudan, therefore, we must cultivate deeper engagement with its systemic character. This requires we radically rethink the parameters of dominant discourse around ‘genocide prevention,’ beyond the focus on individual leaders, and the tendency to conceptualise genocide as an ‘event’ clearly delineated in space and time. A key challenge in this context is how to connect anti-genocide action to struggles for global and environmental justice, anti-imperial and indigenous rights movements.
Biography Dr Louise Wise is based at the International State Crime Initiative (ISCI), Queen Mary University of London, where she is Associate Editor of the journal, State Crime. She received her PhD in 2015 from the War Studies Department at King’s College London. She was recently awarded the ‘Best Paper’ prize in the Theory Section of the International Studies Association (ISA) for a paper based on her PhD thesis, which put forward an original interpretation of genocide in Sudan as colonial and global-systemic in constitution.
Risky Times and Spaces: Settler Colonialism and the Everyday Ethics of Genocide Prevention through a Virtual Indian Residential School
Authors Adam Muller, University of Manitoba
Andrew Woolford, University of Manitoba
Struan Sinclair, University of Manitoba
Abstract Genocide prevention tends to be bound up in colonial temporal and spatial orders. Whether prevention systems are governed by discourses of risk assessment, early warning, or stages of intensification, they tend to be superimposed on a framework that takes for granted the sovereignty of colonial nation states and runs according to a linear and successive notion of duration. These grounding assumptions of genocide prevention further lend themselves to specific forms of “intervention” that seek to harness political will and interrupt genocidal intensifications. In contrast, we seek to “rethink” prevention in a manner that opens up to Indigenous understandings of time and space and takes seriously the ongoing, fluid, and pulsating destructive processes of settler colonialism. In the North American context, these processes stretch across diverse Indigenous landscapes, simultaneously intensifying in some regions, while slackening in others. For example, in Canada one can witness simultaneous efforts to address the residential schooling past and counter settler colonial genocide alongside the overrepresentation of Indigenous peoples in prisons, continuing child removals through interventions by government agents, and assaults on Indigenous geographies through oil and gas resource exploitation. In this light, we frame a community-based project working with Indian Residential School Survivors to design and build a virtual residential school as a site of knowledge transmission and empathy formation as an act of genocide prevention. We argue that the fluid temporality and spatiality of the virtual world creates opportunity for development of an everyday ethic of embodied, reactive empathy that contributes to unsettling genocide prevention.
Biography Adam is the editor of Concepts of Culture: Art, Politics, and Society (2005), as well as co-editor of Fighting Words and Images: Representing War Across the Disciplines (2012) and The Idea of a Human Rights Museum (2015). He is an interdisciplinary genocide scholar with a special interest in photographic representations of mass violence. In 2014 he curated Photrocity, an exhibition of never-before seen Soviet World War Two atrocity photographs, for which he also wrote the catalogue. He currently co-directs the SSHRC-funded Embodying Empathy project, which links survivors, scholars, and private-sector tech professionals in the creation of a virtual and immersive Canadian Indian Residential School.

Andrew Woolford is professor of sociology at the University of Manitoba and president of the International Association of Genocide Scholars. He is author of ‘This Benevolent Experiment’: Indigenous Boarding Schools, Genocide and Redress in the United States and Canada (2015, co-published by University of Nebraska Press and University of Manitoba Press). He is co-editor of Colonial Genocide in Indigenous North America (2014, Duke) and The Idea of a Human Rights Museum (2015, University of Manitoba Press). He also co-edited (with Jeff Benvenuto) a 2015 special issue of the Journal of Genocide Research on “Colonial Genocide in Canada”. He is currently working on two community-based research projects with residential school Survivors to help commemorate their experiences and enhance societal empathy.

Struan Sinclair is an Associate Professor and Director of the Media Lab at the University of Manitoba, with research interests in digital culture, narrative computing, cognitive approaches to literature and crime fiction. His novels, short fiction, plays and new media projects have been widely anthologized and reprinted and have received critical acclaim and awards internationally. His works include Strange Comforts, Everything Breathed (Granta) and Automatic World (Doubleday/Anchor Books), as well as a forthcoming novel, short fiction collection and the interactive memoir Tomorrowless.

Genocide in the African Great Lakes Region

Location W349, Level 3, Forgan Smith
Chair Stephanie Wolfe; Weber State University
1972 Hutu Genocide: Breaking the Silence in View to Preventing Further Genocide in Burundi
Authors Peter Taratara, Burundian Survivors of the 1972 Hutu Genocide
Frederic Nzeyimana, Burundian Survivors of the 1972 Hutu Genocide
Abstract Despite the atrocities committed for decades by the Tutsi ruling class against the Hutu people who are also the majority and disadvantaged population in Burundi particularly in 1972, such killings have not been recognized as genocide. On the other hand, the national and international justice systems have not taken any step against the perpetrators of these inhumane acts. The indifference of the justice systems add pain to the families who know that their loved ones are buried in mass graves while the perpetrators of such atrocities walk and travel free even in democratic countries, and some are active in local politics. This paper, first discusses how the 1972 Genocide carried out by the then military leadership of Michael Micomebero against the Hutus fits into the definition and genocide criteria on the basis of what is referred to as “selective genocide” (killing by using of lists of Hutu elites, priests, students, businessmen) and intellectual genocide (The killing of Hutus through educational and opportunity starvation). Secondly, the paper discusses the need to restore peace by devising and implementing institutional and power sharing models in order to put a stop to any further ethnic atrocities. The overall aim is not genocide denial as it is a catalyst of further genocide. Also to show that what Burundian people need is a support from the international community in their journey to restoring peace and trust among the two main ethnic groups, including a support to Burundi Truth and Reconciliation Commission (BTRC) and Intra-Burundi National Dialogue.
Biography Peter is an Australian of Burundi heritage. He is a Genocide activist, a member and Regional Coordinator (Australian Region) for the survivors of the genocide against Hutu of 1972. Peter lost his eldest brother during the Tutsi lead Genocide campaign in May 1972. Peter spent a total of 26 years as a refugee in Tanzania and in Botswana prior to coming to Australia in 2000. He is a PhD candidate at the University of Notre Dame in WA; holds a Master’s Degree in Health Services Management; a Bachelor of Nursing (Curtin University WA), and Bachelor of Education (University of Dar-es-Salaam - Tanzania). Peter is founder of the Burundian Community in WA, and is currently the President of the International Burundian Diaspora. He is a Clinical Nurse at Kununurra District Hospital in WA. Peter believes in political power sharing and reconciliation among Hutu and Tutsi for a stable future for Burundi.

Frederic Nzeyimana is an International coordinator of the Burundian survivors of Hutu Genocide of 1972. He holds a Master Degree in Anthropology from the University of Montreal. Frederic’s father and father-in law were killed during the 1972 Hutu Genocide. Frederic works as a mobile Certified Career Broker with TSE; the Staffing Exchange in Gatineau/Quebec Province; has also worked as a Workforce Specialist and Job developer by JEWISH VOCATIONAL SERVICES (JVS) Toronto. Frederic was appointed on the Ontario Provincial Parent Board in 2007 by Premier Minister of Ontario to participate in the development of a policy and advise the Ministry on how to increase parent involvement in children’s education in Ontario; he is a consultant on effective integration in Canada. Frederic takes pride in advocating for those who have no voice. He believes that sustainable peace in Burundi can be achieved through truth, reconciliation and justice.
Intimacy in Silence: The Process of “Family” Reconfiguration in Southwestern Rwanda
Authors Yukiko Kondo, Kyoto University
Abstract Several researchers have uncritically discussed reconciliation in post-conflict Rwanda that involves sharing every violent experience, raising awareness to guilt regarding others’ difficulties, and creating public spaces for debate. These practices, however, assume that one behaves like modern Europeans, without necessarily taken into consideration locals’ orientation towards peace. This study examines how people in southwestern rural Rwanda reconstructed their social relationships to survive after the conflict in the 1990s, especially focusing on widows, divorced women, and orphans. This paper reveals how people fostered intimate relationships, in which give attention to mutual existence and suffering, without talking about devastating experiences they found difficult to relate. The Hutu people, who comprise the majority of K village, tend to reorganize their social relationships through patrilineal ties. Conversely, some Tutsi people, who lost most of their family members, can obtain resources through political interventions such as laws and policies implemented during the post-conflict period. This has allowed Tutsi women to live independently. Other Tutsis have created intimate relationships with their Hutu neighbors through daily practices such as borrowing and lending their homes, and sharing space and food. These activities occur due to the neighbors’ responses to the hardship the Tutsis have endured. Although the government has banned ethnicity, political interventions seem to reinforce the division between ethnic groups. The fact that some people are not accepted in the official “history” causes them to remain silent; yet the silence itself can act as a response to others’ suffering.
Biography Ms. Yukiko Kondo was received the bachelor’s degree in agriculture in 2010 and achieved the master’s degree in area studies in 2012, from Kyoto University, Japan. She is now a doctoral student of Graduate School of Asia and African Area Studies, Kyoto University. She will be a Research Fellow of Japan Society for the Promotion of Science and Doshisha University, Japan, from April 2017. Her major is anthropology and her research interest includes how to reconstruct social relationships in a post-conflict society, especially in the Great Lakes region of Africa. She has conducted her field research in rural Rwanda totally around a year and a half from 2010.

Film and Genocide I

Location W431, Level 4, Forgan Smith
Chair Mark Drumbl; Transnational Law Institute, Washington and Lee University
Film and the Khmer Rouge Tribunal: Proof and Prevention
Authors Emma Palmer, University of New South Wales
Sarah Williams, University of New South Wales
Abstract The Democratic Kampuchea regime in Cambodia from 1975 to 1979 (DK), during which the Khmer Rouge either directly or indirectly caused the death of approximately 1.75 million people has long been a source of macabre inspiration for film-makers. Yet, film has also played an important role within and around the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC), the institution designed to bring to justice the leaders of the DK regime and those most responsible for its crimes. This paper will examine two aspects of the use of film within and around the ECCC. First, the paper will analyse the use of film within the formal evidentiary processes of the criminal trials, as well as evidence provided by film-makers. Film evidence can support the achievement of justice for atrocity crimes and assist in constructing case narratives, but can also raise fair trial issues. Second, the paper explores the potential for film projects to be awarded as a judicial or non-judicial reparations measure. Film projects would fall within the category of reparations known as satisfaction or symbolic reparations and may contribute to guarantees of non-repetition of violence. Such projects fall within the scope of the ECCC’s reparations mandate, which is limited to the award of ‘collective and moral’ reparations. The paper suggests that film reparations projects can contribute to addressing the harm caused to victims during the DK regime, including intergenerational harm, and potentially provide a preventative benefit through contributing to public awareness of the DK regime and its crimes.
Biography Emma is PhD candidate at UNSW studying international criminal law in Southeast Asia and is currently a Research Assistant for two Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Projects within the Faculty of Law at UNSW. Emma completed a Masters in Law, specialising in international law, in 2011, having previously received Bachelor degrees in Law and Commerce. After completing her post-graduate studies, Emma undertook an internship with the Australian Permanent Mission to the United Nations in Geneva and worked as a solicitor, as well as researching women’s legal and justice issues at Women’s Legal Services NSW. Before commencing post-graduate studies, Emma worked for four years as a senior investment analyst at Macquarie Bank (2006-2011). Emma is admitted as a Solicitor and Barrister in New South Wales and is a Director on the Board of Women’s Legal Services NSW.

Dr Sarah Williams is a Professor at the University of New South Wales. Her research areas include international criminal law, international humanitarian law and international disaster law. Sarah's book, Hybrid and Internationalized Criminal Tribunals: Selected Jurisdictional Issues, was published by Hart Publishing in April 2012. She is an Associate of the Australian Human Rights Centre, and co-director of its Humanitarian Law programme. Sarah is currently participating in two ARC Discover Projects, one addressing civil society participation in international criminal tribunals, and the other examining the potential for transformative reparations in relation to sexual and gender-based violence.
The Look of Silence, the 1965-66 Indonesian Genocide, and the Ethics of Atonement
Authors Marguerite La Caze, University of Queensland
Abstract Joshua Oppenheimer’s extraordinary The Act of Killing (2012) documented perpetrators of the genocide of hundreds of thousands of communists or suspected communists in Indonesia in 1965-66, encouraging them to re-enact their crimes in the film genre of their choice. These men are largely unrepentant, although one of them shows signs of remorse at one point. The film itself can be understood as an attempt at atonement in spite of the attitudes of the perpetrators, and may even lead to real steps to atone, since millions of Indonesians have seen the film and responded with concern to the killings. The film raised awareness of the killing, the impunity, and the lack of redress after fifty years. The follow-up documentary, The Look of Silence (2014), takes this process further by considering how the survivors might confront the killers and build relationships with the next generation, the children of the killers. It focuses on the attempt of one survivor, Adi Rukun, to discover the truth of what happened to his brother and to confront those responsible. My paper discusses the presentation of his search for atonement in relation to the concept of communal atonement. A puzzle about atonement is how it is possible if the individuals who committed the wrong do not atone. I consider how the process of making the documentary, participating in it, and the screenings in Indonesia and elsewhere contribute to atonement for the genocide despite the unapologetic response from the killers.
Biography Marguerite La Caze is Associate Professor in philosophy at the University of Queensland. She has research interests and publications in European and feminist philosophy in the fields of ethics, political philosophy, and aesthetics, including philosophy and film. Her publications include The Analytic Imaginary (Cornell, 2002) Integrity and the Fragile Self, with Damian Cox and Michael Levine (Ashgate, 2003), and Wonder and Generosity: Their Role in Ethics and Politics, (SUNY, 2012). Marguerite La Caze currently holds an ARC Discovery Grant (2015-17) for her project ‘Ethical restoration after oppressive violence: a philosophical account.’

Curating Memories of Genocide

Location W426, Level 4, Forgan Smith
Chair Matthew Turner; Deakin University
Voices from the Ashes: Survivor Testimony and the Possibility of Education Playing a Role in Genocide Prevention
Authors Ari Lander, Sydney Jewish Museum
Abstract Genocide prevention defies an easy solution, and clearly the international community has failed to prevent acts of genocide in the years since the 1948 Convention. Obviously, education alone cannot prevent further genocides from taking place. Furthermore, academics have long been aware of the crucial role played by intellectuals in genocides perpetrated in Cambodia, Rwanda and Europe. The question is, whether or not a specific type of education could play a role in cultivating empathy for victims of grave violations of human rights. Each year approximately 25,000 school students are educated in Holocaust programs at the Sydney Jewish Museum. Ninety percent of the students attending programs at the Museum hear the testimony of a Holocaust survivor who speaks for 30-50 minutes. The students are then invited in to ask the survivor questions. Over the years the Sydney Jewish Museum has collected the responses of thousands of teachers and students who have attended programs at the Museum. Their responses indicate that hearing the testimony of a Holocaust survivor had a profound emotional impact and helped cultivate empathy for the victims of genocide. The work carried out by the Museum takes place in a very specific cultural milieu, specifically, a democratic and liberal society that is not experiencing dramatic social or economic upheaval. Nonetheless, this paper will argue that the programs run by the Sydney Jewish Museum could provide a blueprint for creating educational programs that cultivate emotional and intellectual empathy for victims of genocide and other extreme violations of human rights.
Biography Dr Ari Lander is an Education officer at the Sydney Jewish Museum where has worked in Holocaust and genocide education for almost five years. He completed his doctorate at the University of New South Wales in 2013. His doctorate examined the history of the Zionist youth movements in Australia and the complex and evolving nature of Jewish identity in Australia. While completing his doctorate he lectured on the subject of the Holocaust and comparative genocide at UNSW for seven years. He has published articles on his research in the Australian Journal of Jewish Studies as well as in an edited collection of essays Australia & Israel: A Diasporic, Cultural and Political Relationship edited by Shahar Burla and Dashiel Lawrence.
What’s in a Place? Revisiting Memorial Museums Located on Former Sites of Atrocities
Authors Jessica Heidrich, University of Queensland
Abstract The mounting instability of the global socio-political climate and a ‘memory boom’ in the heritage sector has recently given rise to a new cultural institution: the memorial museum. Memorial museums help establish the gravity of genocide in social perspective; however, there is a paucity of scholarly engagement with those museums defined by their location on (and preservation of) former sites of atrocities. In response to Violi’s (2012) hypothesis that memorial museums may exist as material testimonies, a descriptive reading of the National September 11 Memorial Museum, New York, is presented. This case study is part of a broader research initiative focused on the visitor experience of museums that preserve the physical, historic setting of past traumatic events (e.g. Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial Museum and Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum). Drawing upon practice-based concepts of memory and phenomenological approaches to place, this paper thus asks: How may the physicality of memorial museums located on former sites of atrocities inform understandings of visitor engagement with traumatic pasts? It is suggested that the visitor experience of memorial museums should not be readily attributable to the morbid fascination conventionally described by scholars of dark tourism. The act of being ‘in-place’ instead reflects interplay between the physical qualities of the museum site, the act of visiting, and a visitor’s subjectivities. Recognising this dialogue between the museum site as a material witness and the visitor as a secondary witness is the first step towards developing a more critical, qualitative understanding of visitor engagement at ‘dark heritage’ sites.
Biography Jessica Heidrich is a qualified archaeologist with a passion for exploring the intersection of heritage management, archaeology, and museum visitor engagement. Under the supervision of Dr Glenys McGowan and Dr Prudence Ahrens, Jessica has recently completed a Masters of Museum Studies that aims to establish a critical dialogue about the value of a place-based approach to museum visitor engagement with traumatic heritage. In addition to her postgraduate research, Jessica has worked on the Boncuklu Archaeological Project in Turkey; undertaken a conservation project for the UQ Anthropology Museum’s photographic negatives collection; and held an internship at Museum Victoria assisting with the Donald Thomson Collection. Jessica also enjoys facilitating the University’s Archaeology Outreach Program for primary and secondary school students and has been recognised for her notable achievements in archaeology with a UQ University Medal. After graduation, Jessica plans to pursue a career in archaeological fieldwork and heritage management.

Film Session D

Location Moot Court W237, Level 2, Forgan Smith
Island of Lies (1991)
Director Gillian Coote
Runtime 56 minutes
Abstract When Eliza Fraser was ship wrecked off the coast of Queensland in 1836, eventually landing on the coast of what was to become known as Fraser Island, there were up to 3000 Aboriginal people living there. By 1905 only 20 or 30 remained. Gillian Coote’s essay film employs a diary-come-road movie form, following the route of the early colonial expansion north from Sydney to Fraser Island. In the process, the filmmaker seeks to discover the truth about massacres, genocide and cover-ups that characterise Australian race relations. The film is bracketed by sequences from Allan Marett’s Noh theatre treatment of the Eliza Fraser myth; in which the ghost of Eliza Fraser is trapped in the ‘realm of ghosts’ because of her refusal to acknowledge her lies.
Road to Justice (2016)
Director Ferry Putra
Runtime 23 minutes
Abstract Road to Justice is a short film made by Jakarta-based activists about the International People’s Tribunal for Crimes against Humanity in Indonesia, 1965-1966. The Tribunal was held in The Hague in 2015 to mark the 50th anniversary of the killings of 1965, which claimed the lives of an estimated one million people.