Beyond perpetrators: complex political actors surrounding the 1994 genocide in Rwanda

Jessee, E. (2019) Beyond perpetrators: complex political actors surrounding the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. In: Smeulers, A., Weerdesteijn, M. and Hola, B. (eds.) Perpetrators of International Crimes: Theories, Methods, and Evidence. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780198829997 (doi:10.1093/oso/9780198829997.003.0009)

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This chapter considers the life histories of three convicted génocidaires—the term for those individuals who had some degree of criminal complicity in the 1994 Rwandan genocide. Since the genocide, the victorious Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) has, using a range of transitional justice mechanisms, disseminated an oversimplified official history of the genocide that divides the population into innocent Tutsi survivors or guilty Hutu perpetrators. However, convicted génocidaires’ actions surrounding the genocide were often more complex than the RPF’s official history acknowledges. For this reason, this chapter—building upon the work of Erica Bouris and Erin Baines—approaches génocidaires as ‘complex political actors.’ This framing allows for enhanced consideration of the individual circumstances that informed génocidaires’ actions. It similarly allows researchers to better comprehend génocidaires’ efforts to claim space as victims, bystanders, and survivors, for example, given the broader political, historical, and personal circumstances that informed their actions during the genocide.

Item Type:Book Sections
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Jessee, Dr Erin
Authors: Jessee, E.
College/School:College of Arts > School of Humanities > History
Publisher:Oxford University Press
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 Oxford University Press
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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