Who is the Subject of Atrocities Prevention?

The work of prevention cannot be adequately conceived as simply pushing a conceptual framework upstream, as it were. Even the basic vocabularies to describe on-going violence may be ill-suited for contexts where violence has not occurred. Worse yet, these vocabularies may obscure the very relationships and social structures that are best suited to protection. Some of the most compelling work on atrocities prevention today begins precisely at this impasse by challenging the assumptions of what factors are relevant to the work of prevention, adding new concepts to the analytical framework, and diversifying the cases that inform the work of atrocity prevention.

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Setting the Agenda for Evidence-Based Research on Ending Mass Atrocities

The field of genocide and mass atrocities studies has produced significant contributions to knowledge of where, when and why campaigns of large-scale, one-sided violence occur, but offers relatively few explicit examinations of the political, social and military dynamics of the de-escalation of violence. This simple question remains unexplored: how do mass atrocities end?

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How Mass Atrocities End: Iraq

Rather than debate the U.S. record, seminar discussions were focused on Iraqis’ experiences of mass violence, from diverse perspectives—historical, sociological, political, demographic and statistical, environmental. Iraqi scholars and specialists framed an agenda for studying patterns of violence around Iraq’s history and politics, including domestic governance and societal relations, and relations with neighboring states and international powers.

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