Peoples, Nations, States and Genocide

From Planet 218

Mike Joseph interviews the genocide scholar Mark Levene in the lead up to the Armenian Genocide centenary commemorations who warns of the threat to minorities today.

This year’s centenary of the Armenian Genocide, and seventieth anniversary of liberation of the Nazi death camps which exposed the face of the Holocaust, coincide with a more profound change: both Armenian and Jewish tragedies are passing from the realms of experience and human memory into, among others, the hands of historians. How are historians responding? Few have devoted as much attention as Mark Levene, whose four-volume analytic history of genocide1 (‘an epic work’ ... set to change ‘the way a subject is taught’) in nearly 2000 pages considers no less than ninety-three ‘major incidents of genocide and sub-genocidal violence’ around Europe between 1912 and 1953. When Mike Joseph spoke to Levene, questions of how Wales might wrestle with this history were never far away.

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