The Rwandan Genocide of 1994

1183 WordsJun 25, 20185 Pages
In April of 1994 a terrible event took place, one where approximately one-million people were brutally murdered on the basis of their ethnicity or if they opposed the regime. (Uvin, 2003). This terrible event occurred in Rwanda, and it is known as the Rwandan Genocide. Genocide can be described as a one sided mass killing in which the state or other authority intends to destroy a group, as that group and membership in it are identified by the perpetrator. (Hintjens, 1999) This is exactly what took place in Rwanda in 1994. In Rwanda the population was mostly Hutu (84%) and had two minorities, Tutsi (15%) and Twa (1%). (Hoex, 2010) The perpetrators of the genocide were the Hutu majority and the victims were the Tutsi. In order to…show more content…
As the scholars said “invention of tradition,” is basically saying that these roles in the society at the time of the genocide had been constructed and it was not something that was primordial. Generation after generation this concept of the ethnic difference between the Hutu and Tutsi was more accepted and held to be true. The belief of this being true does not make it true, but just gives power who benefit from this belief. During the colonial period these distinctions became more important. When colonists came to Rwanda they imposed their racial hierarchal system. They said that the Tutsi were not even native Africans and came from a different land and that is why they had the right to rule over the Hutu majority. This was also necessary to the Belgians because it gave them a sense of order, where there were once about twelve clans in the area where they colonized. This way they did not have to learn the culture and make it simpler to rule because there were only two ethnic groups to manage. The Belgians imposed this story of the right to rule and how the two groups of people were different. This also led to the differences in the occupations that the groups were allowed to hold. The Tutsi were delegated the job of ruling, cattle, and military. In order to create this difference that was not really there before, they need a method to divide the people. They did so by the amount of cattle that the man had. If the man had more than ten heads of
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