CfP: International Network of Genocide Scholars Fourth Global Conference on Genocide

Cape Town, 4-7 December 2014

Genocide and Mass Trauma: Rising to the Challenges of Comprehension, Intervention, Prevention and Restitution

The International Network of Genocide Scholars (INoGS) was founded in
January 2005 in Berlin to provide genocide studies with a non-partisan
forum through which to present research and analysis on any aspect of
genocide as well as other forms of collective violence. Because genocide is
a highly contested legal, historical, sociological and political concept,
INoGS has since its founding maintained support of research-led analysis
rather than politically defined agendas.

Recent symposia on genocide and mass violence, as manifested in the series
of Global Conferences organised by INoGS since 2009, have witnessed
intensified scholarly engagement with, and debate around, a range of issues
of fundamental importance to the field of enquiry, including theoretical
approaches to the subject, the legal and ethical bases upon which to
approach episodes of exterminatory violence, as well as the need to develop
more effective means of preventing mass violence globally. Importantly,
scholarship has moved beyond the holocaust-centric view of genocide as
concentrated and immediate mass killing, and returned to an approach more
sympathetic to the capacious view expounded by Rafael Lemkin, the
originator of the term, which takes into account a much wider spectrum of
social destruction. There has also been a renewed sense of urgency to
develop intellectual tools relevant to the everyday tasks of deterrence,
intervention, prosecution, and prevention. From Armenia to Zimbabwe, from
the impact of advertising and social media through to xenophobia and
weapons of mass destruction, the range of topics relevant to mass violence
being researched by scholars, and addressed by activists and practitioners
operating in civil society, is wider than ever before.

INOGS’ 4th Global Conference, to be held at the University of Cape Town
between Thursday 4th and Sunday 7th of December 2014, seeks to build on
this momentum. The organisers invite papers, panels and roundtables on any
aspect of genocide and mass trauma. We are especially keen to have
presentations from African scholars. Southern Africanists working on topics
such as the Marikana massacre, xenophobic violence, mass trauma in
Zimbabwe, as well as on collective violence during the colonisation and
liberatory struggles in the region are particularly encouraged to submit
abstracts. Presentations on broader African experiences of mass violence
such as those in Darfur and the Democratic Republic of the Congo among
others, are expressly welcome. Given that the conference will be held in
the immediate wake of the 20th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide, and in
the months leading up to the centenary of the Armenian genocide, we
encourage papers and panels on these cases. Another theme of particular
interest is that of climate change and challenges it poses genocide studies
and prevention. Other topics of interest include, but are not restricted to;

– Individual cases or comparative analyses of genocide or mass trauma
– Colonialism and mass violence
– War crimes and crimes against humanity
– Representations of genocide in literature, film, art, music and other
– Prevention of collective violence
– The politics of apology, reconciliation and restitution
– International law, criminal tribunals and the International Criminal Court
– Deterrence, intervention and prosecution of mass violence
– Gender and mass trauma
– Aftermath and legacies of genocide
– Genocide denial, justifications and silences
– Roles of perpetrators, bystanders and victims
– Memorialisation and commemoration of atrocities
– Environmental change and the challenges it poses globally
– Academic and educational practice within the field of genocide studies
– Social inequality, human rights and collective violence
– Transitional justice and mass trauma
– The arms industry and its role in facilitating conflict

Participation is not restricted to INoGS members. We welcome
interdisciplinary and theoretically informed approaches as well as
transdisciplinary dialogue. Submissions from scholars, postgraduate
students, as well as practitioners and researchers working in government,
the ngo sector and other institutions are invited.

Prospective participants need to upload proposals in the form of abstracts
of no more than 250 words via the conference website at A biographical sketch of no more than 100
words will also be required. Panel and roundtable submissions need, in
addition, to explain the rationale behind the suggestion. Queries relating
to this process can be sent to Applicants
can expect to learn the outcome of their proposals within four weeks of
submission. After their proposals have been accepted participants will need
to register online at which contains
further information about the conference, fees, accommodation options,
travel advice, and other relevant material.

The closing date for submissions is 31 August 2014. Participants
registering before 31 July will receive a 10% discount for early
registration. See conference website for details.

Queries relating to the conference may be sent either to Mohamed Adhikari
at or to Volker Langbehn at:

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