Posts by: Bridget Conley

Memory is not the opposite of forgetting, these two ideas are, as many others have also noted, twins. Rather memory unravels and intervenes, it destabilizes; so its opposite is institutionalized narrative. Memory is most powerful when it makes little sense in relation to the ways we try to tame it, be that for reactionary or liberal narratives. This also means one must part ways with memory at some point, switch to another language once lesson learning and meaning extraction become the goals. This work is overtly and rightly political, and must stake its claims on those grounds.

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My edited volume, How Mass Atrocities End: Studies from Guatemala, Burundi, Indonesia, the Sudans, Bosnia-Herzegovina, and Iraq (Cambridge 2016) was published recently, with case study chapters by Roddy Brett, Noel Twagiramungu, Claire Q. Smith, Alex de Waal, Fanar Haddad, and myself. To help bridge the academic research with policy audiences, we also produced a short briefing paper based […]

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We welcome all comments, whether critical or in support of our authors’ arguments. We only ask that commentators use their real name and engage in real discussion, which is to say, we will not post any ad hominem arguments. We also ask that commentators submit a real email address–which will not be publicly visible–in case […]

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Today, the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) sentenced Radovan Karadzić, the political leader of the Bosnian Serbs through the war (1992 – 1995), when he led them into disgrace by trading legitimate concerns about the character of political life in Bosnia’s post-Yugoslav existence for the pursuit of systematic, group targeted violence against their neighbors.

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WPF has just published an Occasional Paper, “Assessing the Anti-Atrocity Toolbox” by Bridget Conley-Zilkic, Saskia Brechenmacher and Aditya Sarkar, that asks what do we know about the effectiveness of various policy mechanisms that often  the examining scholarly literature that tests the impact of various policy measures often cited as potential measures that state or international organizations could […]

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While I am not an expert on Burundi, I, like many others right now, am watching with dismay as violence in the country continues. My recent research has been on atrocity endings and Burundi today echoes with one finding from my work: the difference between halting (or in this case forestalling) mass atrocities and advancing […]

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