Hey, listener! Welcome back to Rewildology.
If you’ve listened to this show before then you’re well aware that we’re not scared to talk about taboo or uncomfortable topics. If this is your first time tuning in, welcome, love that you’re here, and you’ll soon hear why this show is different than most nature podcasts.
Today, I’m chatting with Anneliese Schenk who studies a rather dark, but important topic – genocide. We, humans, are a violent species, although one could argue not near as violent as we used to be. If you question that at all, just go listen to an episode of Hardcore History by Dan Carlin. Humans have done some pretty f’ed up things in the past and as a woman, I am so glad we’ve evolved from Genghis Khan times.
Anyways, in today’s show, Anne and I chat in-depth about the 1994 Rwanda genocide. She discovered her passion for the topic when she joined a study abroad trip in undergrad to learn more about the event. She was hooked. It combined her curiosity in human psychology, her love of history, and how to help communities avoid similar atrocities in the future. Don’t worry, there’s a strong conservation undertone throughout the episode. We talk about how human violence affects local wildlife, especially during genocides, and how Rwanda has become a leader in conservation, famous for its local superstar, mountain gorillas.
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And now, onto my chat with Anne.
Watch this episode on YouTube.
Resources (from Anneliese)
- Current President of Rwanda/ led the Rwandan Patriotic Front (ended the genocide)- Paul Kagame
- President in 1994 (who died in the plane crash) – Habyarimana (pronounced hab-ya-ri-mana)
- 10 warning signs for genoide. Anne wants to stress that these do not all have to occur for something to be genocide, that they do not necessarily occur in order, and that many often happen simultaneously https://holodomortour.ca/take-action/10-genocide-warning-signs/
- Hotel Rwanda is a really well-done film that portrays the genoicde very accurately (also there are some very interesting international relations stories from 2020 related to Paul Rusesabagina/ Paul Kagame critics/tension https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/18/world/africa/rwanda-paul-rusesabagina.html)
- Another past genoicde that many people study is the Armenian genoicde (also a great example of the last warning sign of genocide- denial). Anneliese found a very in-depth podcast all about it – https://thegreatcrimepodcast.com/
- John Oliver has done two really detailed 20 or so minute pieces in the last few years that touch on genocide/mass violence (a little easier to digest since it has comedy mixed in b/c I know this is an emotionally challenging topic)
- Events in Myanmar/ against the Rohingya- this shows how social media can play a major role in perpetuating violence: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OjPYmEZxACM&t=827s
- Events in China/ against the Uighurs https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=17oCQakzIl8