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HIS 213: Genocide


This research guide is designed for the HIS 213 Genocide course. It has suggestions of where to find materials to assist you with your research. A sampling of books, ebooks, streaming videos, dvds, and websites are suggested, but this is not a complete listing of available materials on each topic. If you need help finding research, please ask a librarian!

General Databases

These databases are great for finding advanced information, research, and data from scholarly, peer-reviewed articles. 

RCBC Streaming Video Databases

Streaming videos can be found in the following RCBC Databases. To access streaming videos, you will need your activated library barcode and pin.

New Books!

Out of the Siege of Sarajevo

The horrors of the civil war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, in the very heart of Europe in 1992, may be all but forgotten - but not by everyone. In this book, Jasna Levinger-Goy offers a vivid, personal story of a family of Jewish origin who identified as Yugoslavs. It traces their journey over a period of ten years, starting with their life in Sarajevo under siege and ending in the United Kingdom.Without belonging to any of the warring factions, this is Levinger-Goy's true story, a story that takes place on the front lines in the heart of Sarajevo. The book offers a percipient view of the civil war through the eyes of those who witnessed it. We are presented here with the motives, reactions and behavior of people caught in the crossfire of political and military events outside their control. It illustrates coping with dangers and the resourcefulness needed during the siege and during the perilous journey out, which were needed almost as much in adapting to new circumstances and in building a new life.Levinger-Goy's venture into the unknown is tangled with the sense of loss - of home, of a country and the loss of identity. Her experience provides an insightful commentary on how these intersect, overlap and ultimately affect an individual. It sheds light on human suffering and resilience, frailty and ingenuity, cruelty and empathy. It describes unique personal circumstances, but illustrates universal behaviors. Although the book inevitably deals with fear, pain, desperation, loss, and even hatred, it also reveals much about love, hope and happiness and above all about the prevalence of good even in the most difficult of circumstances.Set against the backdrop of a brutal conflict, this book reminds us of the very human cost of war.

Surviving the Forgotten Genocide

A rare and poignant testimony of a survivor of the Armenian genocide. The twentieth century was an era of genocide, which started with the Turkish destruction of more than one million Armenian men, women, and children--a modern process of total, violent erasure that began in 1895 and exploded under the cover of the First World War. John Minassian lived through this as a teenager, witnessing the murder of his own kin, concealing his identity as an orphan and laborer in Syria, and eventually immigrating to the United States to start his life anew. A rare testimony of a survivor of the Armenian genocide, one of just a handful of accounts in English, Minassian's memoir is breathtaking in its vivid portraits of Armenian life and culture and poignant in its sensitive recollections of the many people who harmed and helped him. As well as a searing testimony, his memoir documents the wartime policies and behavior of Ottoman officials and their collaborators; the roles played by the British, French, and Indian armies, as well as American missionaries; and the ultimate collapse of the empire. The author's journey, and his powerful story of perseverance, despair, and survival will resonate with readers today.

Defying Hitler

'Long Live Freedom!' -- Hans Scholl's last words before his executionThe White Rose (die Weiße Rose) resistance circle was a group of students and a professor at the University of Munich who in the early 1940s secretly wrote and distributed anti-Nazi pamphlets. At its heart were Hans Scholl, Sophie Scholl, Christoph Probst, Alexander Schmorell, Willi Graf and Professor Kurt Huber, all of whom were executed in 1943 by the Nazi regime. The youngest among them was just twenty-one years old. This book outlines the story of the group and sets their resistance texts in political and historical context, including archival photographs. A series of brief biographical sketches, along with excerpts from letters and diaries, trace each member's journey towards action against the National Socialist state. The White Rose resistance pamphlets are included in full, translated by students at the University of Oxford. These translations are the result of work by undergraduates around the same age as the original student authors, working together on texts, ideas and issues.This project reflects a crucial aspect of the White Rose: its collaborative nature. The resistance pamphlets were written collaboratively, and they could not have had the reach they did without being distributed by multiple individuals, defying Hitler through words and ideas. Today, the bravery of the White Rose lives on in film and literature and is commemorated not just in Munich but throughout Germany and beyond.

Intent to Deceive

The 1994 genocide of the Tutsi, an attempt to exterminate a minority people, was unprecedented in speed and scale, comparable to the genocide of the Armenians by Turkey and the Nazi Holocaust. But the violence continues today as supporters of the racist ideology of Hutu power continue to undermine the established version of events, through systematic denial, propaganda and fake news. This campaign seeks to minimize what occurred and blame the victims for their fate. The genocide denial continues to spread and is promoted by media, academics, lawyers and politicians. In this searing account of the aftermath of the genocide, investigative journalist Linda Melvern exposes systematic attempts to falsify the historical record. This includes a campaign by French military officers, implicated in events, to lay the blame on volunteer peacekeepers in the UN military operation. It includes true story behind the owner of Hotel Rwanda, Paul Rusesabagina, and his links with the killers. It reveals the number of g nocidaires at large, and the priest killers protected by the Vatican. The excessive secrecy and unwarranted concealment of pertinent facts by Western governments serves Hutu Power in its campaign of new spin. Intent to Deceive is a chilling, thoroughly investigated expose of how politicians continue to use the crime for their own ends, long after the killing has ceased

Sierra Leone: Revolutionary United Front

Sierra Leone's eleven-year guerrilla war - that left 200,000 people dead - was brief, bloody and mindlessly brutal. It was also the second African war in which mercenaries were hired to counter some of the worst atrocities that Africa had on offer. By the time it ended in 2002, several groups of mercenaries - including an air wing equipped with a pair of ageing Mi-24 helicopter gunships and backed by the British Army and the Royal Navy - played significant roles in quelling the bush rebellion. It was an idiosyncratic war, which started with the Foday Sankoh's Revolutionary United Front (RUF) chanting the slogan 'No more slaves, no more masters, power and wealth to the people' and ended with a series of battles for control for Sierra Leone's diamond mines in the interior. By then the Liberian tyrant Charles Taylor and Libya's Muammar Gadaffi were the prime movers for the rebel cause, one of the reasons why anyone deemed to be the enemy - doctors, journalists, civil servants, missionaries, nuns and teachers - was slaughtered. The war gradually deteriorated into some of the most barbaric violence seen in any African struggle and which sometimes included cannibalism, with an army of 11,000 child soldiers - some as young as nine or ten - high on drugs rounding up entire neighbourhoods to machine-gun them en masse or burn them alive in their homes. Amputations of limbs of women, the very young and the very old were commonplace.

The Tragedy of Liberation

A groundbreaking chronicle of the violent early years of the People's Republic of China by the author of the BBC Samuel Johnson Prize-winning Mao's Great Famine. "The Chinese Communist party refers to its victory in 1949 as a 'liberation.' In China the story of liberation and the revolution that followed is not one of peace, liberty, and justice. It is first and foremost a story of calculated terror and systematic violence." So begins Frank Dikötter's stunning and revelatory chronicle of Mao Zedong's ascension and campaign to transform the Chinese into what the party called New People. Following the defeat of Chiang Kai-shek in 1949, after a bloody civil war, Mao hoisted the red flag over Beijing's Forbidden City, and the world watched as the Communist revolution began to wash away the old order. Due to the secrecy surrounding the country's records, little has been known before now about the eight years that followed, preceding the massive famine and Great Leap Forward. Drawing on hundreds of previously classified documents, secret police reports, unexpurgated versions of leadership speeches, eyewitness accounts of those who survived, and more, The Tragedy of Liberation bears witness to a shocking, largely untold history. Interweaving stories of ordinary citizens with tales of the brutal politics of Mao's court, Frank Dikötter illuminates those who shaped the "liberation" and the horrific policies they implemented in the name of progress. People of all walks of life were caught up in the tragedy that unfolded, and whether or not they supported the revolution, all of them were asked to write confessions, denounce their friends, and answer queries about their political reliability. One victim of thought reform called it a "carefully cultivated Auschwitz of the mind." Told with great narrative sweep, The Tragedy of Liberation is a powerful and important document giving voice at last to the millions who were lost, and casting new light on the foundations of one of the most powerful regimes of the twenty-first century.

Balkan Struggles

The Balkans witnessed several bloody conflicts during the twentieth century. New nations emerged in 1913, after 500 years of Ottoman rule, only for them to go to war just weeks later. The assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo in June 1914 sparked the series of events that led to the Great War. Most of the belligerents would be drawn into the region, while the post-war border changes created tensions.Italian designs on the Balkans resulted in the occupation of Albania in March 1939, but it failed to take control of Greece over the winter of 1940-41. A German blitzkrieg quickly defeated both Yugoslavia and Greece in the spring of 1941, and the population of both countries then suffered terribly as the occupying forces encouraged collaboration and punished resistance.The area was rife with guerrilla activity, as monarchists, nationalists and communists fought each other as often as the occupying troops. This, in turn, led to communism sweeping across most of the region in the post-war years, while Greece was taken over by a fascist regime.Communism eventually ended, but ethnic troubles resulted in a ten-year conflict across Yugoslavia. It would be divided into Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo, at the end of the bloodiest conflict in Europe since World War II.

Biafra Genocide

One of the great tragedies of Africa is not only the fact that a million people - mostly civilians and a large proportion of them children - died in one of Africa's first post-independence wars, but that until it happened the world thought Nigeria was immune from the wasting disease of tribalism. It certainly was not because the Biafran War is still the most expansive tribal conflagration that the continent has experienced - barring perhaps the ongoing Great Lakes conflict - involving the forces of East and West, only this time, with the British siding with the Soviets. Worse, some of the religious differences that emerged before and after that dreadful carnage are still with us today. During the course of hostilities that lasted almost four years, a lot of other shortcomings surfaced in Africa's most populous nation, including the kind of corruption that, until then, had always been linked to countries rich in oil. Disunity, incompetence and instability - from which Nigeria never really recovered - also emerged. Two bloody army coups followed after the rebels capitulated, together with an appalling series of massacres, mostly of southern Christians by Muslim northerners. Half a century later the slaughter continues.

Torture, Humiliate, Kill

Half a century after the Holocaust, on European soil, Bosnian Serbs orchestrated a system of concentration camps where they subjected their Bosniak Muslim and Bosnian Croat neighbors to torture, abuse, and killing. Foreign journalists exposed the horrors of the camps in the summer of 1992, sparking worldwide outrage. This exposure, however, did not stop the mass atrocities. Hikmet Karčić shows that the use of camps and detention facilities has been a ubiquitous practice in countless wars and genocides in order to achieve the wartime objectives of perpetrators. Although camps have been used for different strategic purposes, their essential functions are always the same: to inflict torture and lasting trauma on the victims. Torture, Humiliate, Kill develops the author's collective traumatization theory, which contends that the concentration camps set up by the Bosnian Serb authorities had the primary purpose of inflicting collective trauma on the non-Serb population of Bosnia and Herzegovina. This collective traumatization consisted of excessive use of torture, sexual abuse, humiliation, and killing. The physical and psychological suffering imposed by these methods were seen as a quick and efficient means to establish the Serb "living space." Karčić argues that this trauma was deliberately intended to deter non-Serbs from ever returning to their pre-war homes. The book centers on multiple examples of experiences at concentration camps in four towns operated by Bosnian Serbs during the war: Prijedor, Bijeljina, Visegrad, and Bileća. Chosen according to their political and geographical position, Karčić demonstrates that these camps were used as tools for the ethno-religious genocidal campaign against non-Serbs. Torture, Humiliate, Kill is a thorough and definitive resource for understanding the function and operation of camps during the Bosnian genocide.

Facing the Khmer Rouge

As a child growing up in Cambodia, Ronnie Yimsut played among the ruins of the Angkor Wat temples, surrounded by a close-knit community. As the Khmer Rouge gained power and began its genocidal reign of terror, his life became a nightmare. In this stunning memoir, Yimsut describes how, in the wake of death and destruction, he decides to live. Escaping the turmoil of Cambodia, he makes a perilous journey through the jungle into Thailand, only to be sent to a notorious Thai prison. Fortunately, he is able to reach a refugee camp and ultimately migrate to the United States, where he attended the University of Oregon and became an influential leader in the community of Cambodian immigrants. Facing the Khmer Rouge shows Ronnie Yimsut's personal quest to rehabilitate himself, make a new life in America, and then return to Cambodia to help rebuild the land of his birth.

Gareth Jones - Eyewitness to the Holodomor

"This excellent book serves as a warning to journalists not to be taken in by official sources and political ideology but to report what they actually learn through their own efforts. Gamache deserves commendation for his research and careful reconstruction of Jones' reportorial journeys." --Prof. Maurine H. Beasley, College of Journalism, U. of Maryland *** "...meticulously researched book [that] returns Gareth Jones to his rightful status, as one of the most outstanding journalists of his generation, in a tumultuous era that depended upon honest journalism as its main source of news."--Nigel Linsan Colley *** "Extraordinary...Jones' articles...caused a small sensation...Because [his] notebooks record immediate impressions and describe events as they were happening, they have an unusual the past two decades, the fate of the two journalists has been slowly reversed. Duranty's work has become controversial; in 2003, the Pulitzer committee debated whether to retrospectively withdraw his prize...[whilst] Jones' reputation has revived thanks to the Ukrainian government's broader efforts to tell the history of the famine...the establishment of a Ukrainian state simply makes Jones seem less marginal, more central, more important."--Anne Applebaum, The New York Review *** Gareth Jones (1905-1934), the young Welsh investigative journalist, is revered in Ukraine as a national hero and is now rightly recognised as the first reporter to reveal the horror of the Holodomor, the Soviet Government-induced famine of the early 1930s, which killed millions of Ukrainians. This is the story of his life, his bravery, and his suspicious death. [Subject: Biography, History, Media Studies, Soviet Studies, Genocide Studies]

RCBC Books

Print books are arranged on the shelf in Library of Congress Call Number order. Each call number begins with an alphanumeric base (e.g., "BF109.J8") that is followed by a cutter and a date of publication (e.g., "A25 1993"). See a librarian if you need assistance.


RCBC Ebooks

If you're interested in finding ebooks only, head to Ebook Central or eBook Collection. To log in, use the barcode located on the back of your student ID and your pin number. You have the option to download ebooks to a device, but we strongly recommend reading them online to take advantage of the full suite of available tools. Create a personal account using your Library barcode and PIN to manage and organize your ebook reading and research.

Websites of Interest

These are some websites that may be of interest to your research: