European Network of Genocide Scholars [ENOGS]: Foundational Meeting (Berlin, January 13-15, 2005)
Without doubt, genocide is one of the most horrific crimes in the history of humankind. In the twentieth century, the Holocaust proved the destructive potential of a utopian biopolitics that aimed at an ethnically or racially homogeneous "societas perfecta". Unfortunately, it was not the first genocide of the last century, as in 1904 the Herero and Nama people had been slaughtered by the imperial German army, and ten years later during World War I, more than 800’000 Armenians were deported and killed by the Young Turks. Nor was the Holocaust the last. Despite the United Nations Genocide Convention of 1948, genocides took place in Cambodia and Rwanda to name just a few.
These enormities, and current crises such as the situation in Darfur (Sudan), make international and interdisciplinary research on genocidal processes all the more important. While genocide research has become an established academic discipline in the USA since the 1970s, its institutional recognition is still in its infancy in many European countries.
Whereas in the United States conferences, journals, and publication series attest to a vibrant community of genocide scholars, such a scholarly infrastructure is less well developed in Europe. With the foundation of an "European Network of Genocide Scholars" [ENOGS], we attempt to foster scholarly exchange between individuals and institutions worldwide. It will be open to researchers from all academic disciplines working on genocide and mass violence from within and outside Europe. Its focus is historical and comparative. A webpage and a discussion-list as a forum for academic announcements and discussions are planned, as well as the publication of a journal or a yearbook. We attempt to cooperate with existing organisations wherever possible.
When the Polish-Jewish lawyer and historian Raphael Lemkin coined the term "genocide" in 1944, he was referring to Nazi policies in Europe, but was first prompted by the Armenian case to conceptualize and criminalize genocide. Lemkin himself wrote extensively on colonial genocides. The 100th anniversary of the genocide in former German Southwest Africa (now Namibia) is therefore an appropriate occasion for the foundation of an “European Network of Genocide Scholars” during the international conference, "Genocides: Forms, Causes, Consequences. The Namibian War (1904-1908) in Historical Perspective,” in Berlin between 13-15 January 2005 at the Haus der Kulturen der Welt, (the programme is available online: http://www.hist.net/ag-genozid/namibianwar). We invite all interested parties to our foundational meeting in Berlin.
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From August on, updated information on ENOGS and its foundation will also be available on our website: http://www.hist.net/ag-genozid/ENOGS
For further information, please contact the addresses below.
Dominik J. Schaller
David Hess-Weg 10
Dr. Juergen Zimmerer
(CEIS 20, Univ. Coimbra)
Rua Alves Torgo 25, 1° esq.
P-5000-679 Vila Real
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