Defining the Horrific

Defining the Horrific : Readings on Genocide and Holocaust in the 20th Century

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With a wide-ranging scope, this anthology is a brief, chronological introduction to the geographic, ideological, cultural breadth, and frequency of genocide in the twentieth century. It contains provocative questions and several case studies.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 393 pages
  • 180.34 x 231.14 x 30.48mm | 635.03g
  • Pearson
  • Upper Saddle River, NJ, United States
  • English
  • 013110084X
  • 9780131100848

Back cover copy

This powerful new collection examines how genocide and holocaust have defined the tragic contours of the twentieth century. Editor Wiliam L. Hewitt places the discussion in a global perspective, examining incidents of the horrific in Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Americas. With readings by such distinguished scholars as Anne Applebaum, Ward Churchill, Steven Katz, Robert Melson, Michale Parenti, Erna Paris, Samantha Power, R.J. Rummel, Edward Said, and Howard Zinn, Defining the Horrific will promote critical inquiry and deep discussion among students and teachers.
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Table of contents

Introduction: Defining the Horrific.

"Genocide," Diane F. Orentlicher from Roy Gutman and David Rieff, eds., Crimes of War: What the Public Should Know (New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1999), 153-157. Scott Straus, "Contested Meanings and Conflicting Imperatives: A Conceptual Analysis of Genocide," Journal of Genocide Research: 3(3), (2001): 349-375. R. J. Rummel, "When and Why to use the Term Democide for Genocide," "Idea: A Journal of Social Issues," 6(1). Deborah Harris, "Defining Genocide: Defining History?" "Eras" (2001): 1-16.

1. Close to Home: Native American Genocide.

Steven T. Katz, "The Pequot War Reconsidered," New England Quarterly: 64(2), (1991): 206-224. Ward Churchill, A Little Matter of Genocide: Holocaust and Denial in the Americas, 1492 to the Present (San Francisco: City Lights Books, 1997), 129-30; 169-74; 218-45.

2. What Is Yours Is Mine: Colonialism.

James O. Gump, The Dust Rose Like Smoke: The Subjugation of the Zulu and the Sioux (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1994), 73-93. "King Leopold's 'Heart of Darkness,'" The Bill of Rights in Action 16(2) (2000) 1-4. "The Tribe Germany Wants to Forget New African" (2000) 1-7. Anne Applebaum, "A History of Horror," The New York Review of Books (October 18, 2001) 40-43.

3. The Almost Forgotten Genocide: Armenia.

Rouben Adalian, "The Armenian Genocide: Context and Legacy," "Social Education: The Official Journal of the National Council for Social Studies" (February 1991). Richard G. Hovannisian, "The Armenian Genocide and Patterns of Denial," The Armenian Genocide in Perspective ((Piscataway, New Jersey: Transaction, 1987) 111-131. Robert F. Melson, ". . . The United States Training on and Commemoration of the Armenian Genocide . . ." Subcommittee on International Operations and Human Rights (September 14, 2000).

4. Death by Hunger: Ukraine.

James E. Mace, "The Great Famine-Genocide in Soviet Ukraine (Holodomor)," in Olexa Woropay's, The Ninth Circle. (Ukranian Studies Fund, Inc., 1983). Ian Hunter, "A Tale of Truth and Two Journalists: Malcolm Muggeridge and Walter Duranty," Report Magazine (March 27, 2000). Roman Serbyn, The Last Stand of the Ukrainian Famine-Genocide, Deniers," The Ukrainian Canadian (February 1989) 7,10,14.

5. The Holocaust.

Franklin Bialystok, "The Holocaust: An Historical Overview." Saul Friedman, "Holocaust Historiography." Ian Hancock, "O Baro Porrajmos The Romani Holocaust," excerpted from We Are The Romani People: Ame Sam e Rromane Dzene (Cityenough: The University of Hertfordshire, 2002). Erna Paris,Long Shadows: Truth, Lies and History" (New York: Bloomsbury, 2002) 333-345.

6. Myths and History: Manchuria.

"The Rape of Nanking," The Bill of Rights in Action 18(3) (Summer 2002) 5-8. Andrew J. Swanger, "Japanese Scientists Conducted Biological Research Experiments on Human Subjects in the Isolated Region of Manchuria,"World War II 13(2) (July 1998) 62-66.

7. There Are Bombs, and There Are Bombs: Hiroshima.

Howard Zinn, "Hiroshima and Royan," from The Politics of History (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1990) 250-74. Tony Capaccio and Uday Mohan, "Missing the Target," American Journalism Review (July-August 1995).

8. Death by Hunger Reprise: China.

Jean-Louis Margolin, "China: A Long March Into Night," from Stephane Courtois, et. al., eds.,([Trans. by Jonathan Murphy and Mark Kramer] The Black Book of Communism (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1999) 487-96.

9. Rwanda, Sudan, Angola: Case Studies: Post-Colonial Africa.

Mark Haband, "Rwanda The Genocide," from Roy Gutman and David Rieff, eds. Crimes of War: What the Public Should Know (New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1999) 312-15. Francis M. Deng, "Sudan-Civil War and Genocide," The Middle East Quarterly 8(1) (Winter 2001) 13-21.

"Angola Preliminary Report-Determination: Not Genocidal in Nature," The Center for the Prevention of Genocide (2002).

10. With Friends Like These Case Studies: Argentina and Guatemala.

"Argentina: The Military Juntas and Military Rights-Report of the Trial of the Former Members," Amnesty International (1987) 2-9. Robert Parry, "Reagan and Guatemala's Death Files," Alternative Press Review 5(1) (Spring 2000). Mireya Navarro, "Guatemalan Army Waged 'Genocide,' New Report Finds," The New York Times (February 26, 1999).

11. Cambodian "Autogenocide."

Sydney Schanberg, "Cambodia," from Roy Gutman and David Rieff, eds., Crimes of War: What the Public Should Know (New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1999) 58-65. David Chandler, "Pol Pot," Time Asia, 154(7/8) (August 1999), 23-30.

12. Case Studies: Indonesia and East Timor, and Bangladesh.

Robert Crobb, "Genocide in Indonesia," (Journal of Genocide Research, 219-237). Adam Jones, "Case Study: Gendercide in Bangladesh, 1971," Genocide Watch. Edward S. Herman, "Good and Bad Genocide: Double Standards in Coverage of Suharto and Pol Pot," Extra (September/October 1998) 15-17.

13. Ethnic Cleansing: Bosnia.

Florence Hartmann, "Bosnia," from Roy Gutman and David Rieff, eds., Crimes of War: What The Public Should Know (New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 1999), 50-56. Ed Vulliamy, "Middle Managers of Genocide," The Nation, (June 10, 1996), 11-15. Kathleen Knox, "Bosnia: First Genocide Verdict May Bolster Other Cases," Radio Free Europe, (1995-2001). Michael Parenti, The Rational Destruction of Yugoslavia (2002).

14. A Tough Neighborhood: The Middle East.


Adam Jones, "Case Study: The Anfal Campaign (Iraqi Kurdistan) 1988," Gendercide Watch (2002). Khaled Salih, "Anfal: The Kurdish Genocide in Iraq," Digest of Middle East Studies 4(2) (Spring 1995) 24-9. George Bisharat, "Sanctions Against Iraq Are Genocide," Seattle Post-Intelligencer (May 3, 2002).

Israelis and Palestinians. Edward Said, "Palestinians Under Seige," London Review of Books (December 14, 2000). Caroline B. Glick, "No Tolerance for Genocide," The Jerusalem Post (August 2, 2002).

15. Bastard Child of the Cold War: North Korea.

Andrew Natsios, "The Politics of Famine in North Korea," United States Institute of Peace Special Report" (August 2, 1999). Pierre Rigoulot, "Control of the Population," from Stephane Courtois, et. al., eds.,[Translated by Jonathan Murphy and Mark Kramer] The Black Book of Communism (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1999) 559, 563. Aidan Foster-Carter, "Is North Korea Stalinist?" Asia Times (September 5, 2001).

Epilogue: Commission by Omissior.

Samantha Power, "Never Again: The Worlds Most Unfulfilled Promise," WGBH/Frontline (1998). Bruce Fine, "Murder Most Foul: For Genocide To Retain Its Unique Legal Standing, We Must Use the Label with Care," Legal Times (September 16, 2002). Hank Therault, "Universal Social Theory and the Denial of Genocide," Journal of Genocide Research 3(20) 242-56.
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About William Hewitt

William Hewitt, professor of history at West Chester University in West Chester, Pennsylvania, received his Ph.D. from the University of Wyoming in 1984. Professor Hewitt helped conceive and institutionalize West Chester University's new graduate Holocaust/Genocide Studies program. He has taught courses on genocide for several years. His research specialties include genocide, Native American history, the American West, race, and sexuality. He has published numerous journal articles, written four documentary videos under the direction of Gary Nash, and most recently a historical novel for young adults.
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