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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:'Ancient tribal warfare': foundational fantasies of ethnicity and history
Author:Harrow, Kenneth W.ISNI
Periodical:Research in African Literatures
Geographic terms:Congo (Democratic Republic of)
Abstract:Narratives of the genocide in Rwanda, counternarratives denying one version or another, return to the foundation fantasy, to the objectification of the other, and to historicist constructions that obscure as they reveal their perspective on the events. Each narrative arose from positions of defensiveness along with the kinds of misrecognition that mark how the subject comes to form an identity, an ego identity. This article presents a way to think about this process, and to understand the narratives that were formed, the texts that were written, and the politics of memorialization that are inscribed in all of these acts of narrating the remembrance of the genocide, including the writing of novels about the events. It argues that the more the commemoration of the genocide focuses our attention on the events of 1994, and restricts the boundaries of time to that period, the more our attention is diverted from the events in the Democratic Republic of Congo and the involvement of the Rwandan government; and the more the spatial divisions and objectification of others will be served, providing the conditions of possibility for genocides and atrocities that would seem to have no end. Bibliogr., notes, sum. [Journal abstract]