Defining Genocide: Educator Workshop Part I
January 30, 2021 - 9:00am to 10:30am
For most people, the word genocide conveys the worst crime humanity can perpetrate. But, what exactly is genocide? Raphael Lemkin, the Polish Jewish lawyer and activist who coined the term in 1944, defined genocide as “a coordinated plan of different actions aiming at the destruction of essential foundations of the life of ethnic and national groups, with the aim of destroying the groups themselves.” Lemkin helped usher in the UN Genocide Convention of 1948, an instrument of international law that codified for the first time this heinous crime, requiring states to take measures to prevent its recurrence and to punish the perpetrators. This workshop will discuss the history and ramifications of the term genocide, and its applications across multiple cases, from the Holocaust to the Canadian Indian residential schools. We will also explore rationales for teaching about genocide, and share resources to help you achieve your goals.