The Killing of Death

Denying the Genocide Against the Tutsi

By Roland Moerland

This study deals with the phenomenon of genocide denialism, and in particular how it operates in the context of the genocide against the Tutsi. The term genocide denialism denotes that we are not dealing with a single act or type of (genocide) denial but with a more elaborate process of denial that involves a variety of denialist and denial-like acts that are part of the process of genocide. From this study it becomes clear that the process of genocide thrives on a more elaborate denial dynamic than recognized in expert literature until now. Part of the study focuses on denial in practice and it analyses how denial operates in the particular case of the genocide against the Tutsi. The analysis reveals a complex denial dynamic: not only those who perpetrated the genocide are involved in its denial, but also certain Western scholars, journalists, lawyers, etc. The latter were originally not involved in the genocide but recycle (elements of) the denial discourse of the perpetrators. The study addresses the implications of such recycling and discusses whether these actors actually have become involved in the genocidal process. This sheds light on the complex relationship between genocide and denial. On a more fundamental level this study critically highlights how the revisionist scientific climate, in which knowledge and truth claims are constantly questioned, is favourable to genocide denialism and how the post-modern turn in academia has exacerbated this climate. Ultimately, this study reveals that the phenomenon of genocide denial involves more than perpetrators denying their genocidal crimes and the scope of actors and actions relevant in terms of genocide denialism is much broader than generally assumed. (School of Human Rights Research) [Subject: Genocide, Human Rights Law]

Publication Date: 2/5/2016
Format: Paper
ISBN: 9781780683515