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Towards a Pattern in Mass Violence Participation? An Analysis of Rwandan Perpetrators' Accounts from the 1994 Genocide

NCJ Number
Global Crime Volume: 12 Issue: 4 Dated: November 2011 Pages: 266-289
Samuel Tanner
Date Published
24 pages
In this article, the author focused on the logic whereby a group of eight Hutu became involved in mass violence during the 1994 Rwandan genocide.
This process is considered as a sequence of meaningful events that progressively shaped the actors' frame of analysis. As such, each sequence brings a new qualitative reality which, in turn, constitutes the platform upon which the involvement in, and the perpetration of, mass violence become acceptable and legitimate in the eyes of the perpetrators. Based on both Howard S. Becker's notion of career and Roger Petersen's analysis of resistance and rebellion, the author disaggregated the entire process of participation in mass violence into a sequence of six mechanisms, generating two main phases. The first one, mobilization, refers to the movement from a neutral state to a mobilized state. The second phase, collective action, covers the drift from mobilization to action, namely, killings. (Published Abstract)