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Teaching About Genocide

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum provides five guidelines for teaching about genocides on http://www.ushmm.org/education/foreducators/guideline/#5_guidelines

A website helping teachers and students examine genocides of the last 100 years can be found at http://www.pbs.org/teachers/thismonth/genocide/index.html. Provided by the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), it offers ideas for activities and online as well as printed resources for grades 3-12.

The Toronto District School Board has developed a course for grade 11 students called “Genocide: Historical and Contemporary Implications” in 2007. The course deals with three case studies - the Holocaust, Armenia and Rwanda. In this course, students can investigate the terms genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes and explore them through the lens of historical analysis. Students can examine identity formation and find out how “in-groups” and “out-groups” are created, including an analysis of how bias, stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination impact on various groups. For more information see http://www.tdsb.on.ca/wwwdocuments/programs/equity_in_education/docs/tdsb%20genocide%20course%20proposal.pdf.

A useful article on curriculum debates can be found in the paper “This Magazine”: http://www.thismagazine.ca/issues/2008/09/teachinggenocide.php

Since 1997, the Survivors Fund (SURF) has helped survivors of the Rwandan genocide deal with and recover from the tragedies of 1994 by supporting a wide range of services for victims in Rwanda and assisting survivors in the UK. The Fund offers a variety of information and materials well suited for educational purposes on http://www.survivors-fund.org.uk/resources/resources.php.

The “Genocide Education Project” is a nonprofit organization that assists educators in teaching about human rights and genocide, particularly the Armenian genocide, by developing and distributing instructional materials, providing access to teaching resources and organizing educational workshops. The “Genocide Education Project” seeks to broaden the general understanding of the history of the Armenian genocide. It puts the events into the context of World War I history, preceding the patterns of genocides to follow. Read more on http://www.teachgenocide.com/

Teaching resources on the Darfur case are still rare. The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (http://www.ushmm.org/conscience/resources/#02-crisis_in_darfur) as well as Human Rights Watch (http://www.hrw.org) offer articles, photos and film clips.

Following the conference “Teaching and Researching the Politics of Mass Murder”, held at Kingston University, England, in June 2007, a CD-ROM and a multimedia website have been published by the Wiener Library (London). At http://www.wienerlibrary.co.uk/Assets/Media/CD/index.html, you can find conference papers and short interviews by 15 scholars offering a diverse introduction on what and how to teach about genocide.

 

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