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To the last seed : atrocity crimes and the genocidal continuum in Guatemala, 1978-1984

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To the last seed : atrocity crimes and the genocidal continuum in Guatemala, 1978-1984

Drouin, Marc (2006) To the last seed : atrocity crimes and the genocidal continuum in Guatemala, 1978-1984. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

Approximately 132,000 people were killed in Guatemala between 1978 and 1984 in an armed conflict which displaced as much as 20 percent of the country's total population. Of the 626 massacres documented by the Guatemalan Truth Commission and imputed to government security forces, 415 were committed in an 18-month period between June 1981 and December 1982. Based on over one hundred first-person accounts of twenty-one massacres perpetrated during that time, as well as reports from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights concerning violations to the American Convention on Human Rights in Guatemala, this study analyses and contextualises what David Scheffer has termed atrocity crimes . Referring to international humanitarian law, including the Geneva Conventions and the United Nations Genocide Convention, and the growing jurisprudence emanating from the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, crimes committed in Guatemala have been placed on what scholars have called a genocide continuum . Tracing the evolution of consecutive military campaigns from 1981 to 1983, which deliberately made no distinction between armed insurgents and civilian non-combatants, this study demonstrates how war crimes and crimes against humanity in Guatemala in the late 1970s evolved into full-blown genocide by 1982, decimating an entire generation of non-Indigenous urban professionals and intellectuals, as well as entire Indigenous populations in the Guatemalan highlands. Relying on Indigenous survivor's accounts, this thesis attempts to shed light on a genocide which, in Samuel Totten's words, the twentieth century chose to ignore.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > History
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Drouin, Marc
Pagination:ix, 312 leaves ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:History
Date:2006
Thesis Supervisor(s):Chalk, Frank
ID Code:9029
Deposited By:Concordia University Libraries
Deposited On:18 Aug 2011 14:42
Last Modified:18 Aug 2011 14:57
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