Prosecuting Lemkin’s concept of genocide: successes and controversies

Hobson, Jonathan ORCID: 0000-0001-8081-6699 (2018) Prosecuting Lemkin’s concept of genocide: successes and controversies. Genocide Studies and Prevention: an International Journal. ISSN 1911-0359 (In Press)

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This particle paper examines Lemkin’s concept of genocide in three parts. That first part considers debates around the specific intent of genocide and the restrictive nature of dolus specialis (particular intent) in international genocide legislation. Although the emphasis placed on motive in international legislation has served to elevate genocide as the “crime of crimes”, distinguished from other internationally legislated acts of extreme violence, it has also made it difficult to successfully prosecute genocide and moves away from the “broad conceptions of national and national belonging” that Lemkin sought as a basis to a genocide law. The article examines uses Totten and Bartrop’s genocide typologies to help with this discussion, illustrating how different combinations of institutional, utilitarian, monopolistic, and ideological drivers have been used to justify genocide and galvanize populations into action. The second part uses Galtung’s phenomenology of violence to illustrate the complex socio-political nature of genocide. Galtung’s concepts of direct, structural, and cultural violence offers an important tool for illustrating how genocide is a deliberate, long term and multifaceted process of social manipulation and victimisation across all realms of social life. The final part illustrates this complexity though and application of Stanton’s well-established phased stages of genocide. Applying Stanton’s practical and empirical account of genocide processes with Galtung’s work helps to illustrate how ‘techniques of genocide’ mobilize a group or nation to commit, or at least to allow, such an act to take place. Through these three different interpretations, this paper hopefully offers further understanding to what it is that makes genocide a unique crime in human nature. Please note: This is an pre-proofed version of the article accepted to the journal. This version will be replaced with a link to the accepted article once it is live. Referencing this version of the article should follow the format: Hobson, Jonathan (2018) “Three theoretical approaches to Lemkin’s definition of Genocide”, Genocide Studies and Prevention: an International Journal, Pre-acceptance version

Item Type: Article
Article Type: Article
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GF Human geography. Human ecology. Anthropogeography
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
J Political Science > JF Political institutions (General)
J Political Science > JX International law
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > School of Natural & Social Sciences > Social Sciences
Research Priority Areas: Environmental Dynamics & Governance
Depositing User: Jonathan Hobson
Date Deposited: 19 Oct 2018 10:16
Last Modified: 22 Mar 2019 13:30

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