Raoul Hilberg’s work on the Holocaust introduced into historical analysis of atrocity a set of subject positions borrowed from the language of criminal law—perpetrator and victim—augmented with a term to capture those whose actions and inaction elude juridical distinctions, bystander. These “subjects” along with rescuer and survivor form the characterology of genocide as inherited from [...]Continue Reading →
It would be unreasonable to argue that there are inherent contradictions between the idea of protecting “civilians” and protecting “populations”—and yet today there is an effort to separate these terms for political reasons. In this essay, we look at some of the subtle differences between these two subjects of mass atrocities, and address why, at [...]Continue Reading →
This essay is part two of a series on “The subjects of mass atrocities.” Part one can be found here.
Studying violence under the rubric of genocide offers one contribution above all others: attention to the ways that violence is targeted at and experienced as a group. The term was coined in [...]Continue Reading →
Does it matter if the subject of mass atrocities is named as: an ethnic, national, racial or religious group; civilian; population; perpetrator, victim, bystander or rescuer; or something else? These are some of the “names” that are currently in use in the broad field that works on large-scale, systematic atrocities under a range of rubrics: [...]Continue Reading →
The World Peace Foundation is honored to be a part of The Fletcher School, an intellectual community that is deeply engaged in world events. As the crisis in Syria has gained new urgency in light of the use of chemical weapons against civilians and subsequent U.S. proposal to bomb the Syrian regime, our [...]Continue Reading →
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