Ethnic Cleansing

1822 Words 8 Pages
Doubt, Keith. "Evil and the ritual of shame: A crime against humanity in Bosnia-Herzegovina." Janus Head 7.2 (2007): 319-331.

Doubt uses a sociological lens to examine the ethnic cleansing in Serbia, stating that the root of ethnic cleansing lies in an “attempt to transform the public identities of individuals and a community.” (Doubt) This means to debase an individual or group into a lesser being(s) in the eyes of the witnesses, or the world community. This is the essence of how sociologists define “evil,” focusing on “evil’s parasitic relation to what does make sense, what is intelligible, and what is.” (Doubt) Basically, that the degradation of one group becomes normalized when the degrader forms their objective in a way that a witness
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Thus, it is clear that his paper takes a heavy sociological view of this situation. This work was published in a review called Janus Head, which is an international peer-reviewed journal. Content wise, this article is more inclined to people with a working knowledge of sociological terms. Aside from this, Doubt places emphasis on how an individual can come to represent an entire group. He does this utilizing anecdotes of horrors during the war, and elaborates on such horrors to exacerbate the dynamic triad of the witness, the denouncer, and the denounced. The triad is where potential biases come in as Keith uses his sociological lens of analysis without much regard for the cultural implications that were going around in the Yugoslav states at that time. He touches on one political factor of the ethnic cleansings, but this is a one sentence appeal, which is not enough for the complexity of the Yugoslav climate at the time. Besides the potentially detrimental focus on sociological trends, this article was useful as it showed the societal influences that can perpetuate ethnic …show more content…
This centres on the relation between individual and collective security, and how women fit into that dichotomy. Hansen categorizes war rapes into three categories: Balkan Warfare, Serbian Warfare, and Balkan Patriarchy. Balkan Warfare articulates rape as a normal extension of war that is an individual problem. The Serbian Warfare side sees it as situation that “presents a national security problem in need of intervention” (Hansen) The final category of Balkan Patriarchy sees wartime rape as “a threat to women on all sides of the war,” (Hansen) although, under this interpretation, decisions of national vs individual security are more ambiguous. Hansen says it is a combination of the individual vs collective, and the feminine vs masculine dichotomy that categorizes wartime rapes. This is because “raping ‘the nation’s women’ is not only an act of violence… it also works to install a disempowered masculinity as constitutive of the identities of the nation’s men.” (Hansen) Thus, the masculine becomes a domineering force while the feminine becomes the victim, coloring nations through a particular gender. Ambiguity bleeds through as feminist politics would take away the nation state and place situations in terms of who is the masculine entity in a conflict, and who is the

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