TORONTO, Canada—Eight renowned genocide scholars will lead students this summer in tackling the challenging and critical phenomenon of genocide through an intensive two-week program. The scholars, the faculty of the Genocide and Human Rights University Program (GHRUP), represent a variety of specializations, including history, sociology, philosophy, political science, and international law, and will provide the students with a strongly interdisciplinary and comparative approach.
“I am deeply gratified to work with such a distinguished, dedicated, and caring group of scholars,” said Prof. Roger W. Smith, director of the GHRUP. “The expertise they bring to research in their respective subject specialties is well recognized. Perhaps less well known is the personal engagement and concern for the students they bring to their teaching. Having both faculty and students come together from around the world in such an intensive seminar creates a learning experience and bonding far different from that of a conventional course. The faculty members stand ready to respond to student inquiries not only during the program, but also afterward. Personally, I think of the students as junior colleagues and enjoy staying in touch with them as they progress in their careers.”
Returning as faculty this year will be Joyce A. Apsel, master teacher, New York University; Doris Bergen, Chancellor Rose and Ray Wolfe Chair in Holocaust Studies, department of history, University of Toronto; Maureen S. Hiebert, assistant professor, Law and Society Program, University of Calgary; Herbert Hirsch, co-editor of “Genocide Studies and Prevention: An International Journal” and Professor of Government and Public Affairs, Virginia Commonwealth University; William A. Schabas, director, Irish Human Rights Centre, National University of Ireland; and Roger W. Smith, Professor Emeritus of Government, College of William and Mary.
The Institute is pleased to welcome back previous faculty members Richard Hovannisian, Professor of Armenian and Near Eastern History at the University of California, Los Angeles, and Major Brent Beardsley, chief instructor of the Canadian Forces Peacekeeping Training Center. In 1993 and 1994, Major Beardsley served as the personal staff officer to then Major-General Romeo Dallaire, the force commander of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda, and was an eye-witness to the genocide there.
In explaining his commitment to teaching the history of the Armenian case, Hovannisian wrote, “There is much to be learned from approaching the Armenian Genocide as the prototype of modern mass-killings. Placing that Armenian legacy in comparative perspective with other such cases assists students, teachers, and human rights supporters in their quest for a more tolerant and peaceful world.”
Joining the faculty for the first time will be Professor Samuel Totten, who has taught at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, since 1987. He is a member of the Council of the Institute on the Holocaust and Genocide (Jerusalem), and the Centre for Genocide Studies (Sydney, Australia). He is the author of numerous articles and editor of numerous collected volumes on genocide. From 2000-05, he served as book review editor of the “Journal of Genocide Research.” Since 2005, he has been a co-editor of “Genocide Studies and Prevention: An International Journal.” In 2003-04, he was a member of the U.S. State Department’s Atrocities Documentation Project investigating the genocide in Darfur.
Upon being invited to the program this year, Totten wrote, “Let me first say that I am honored to be asked to take part in the Genocide and Human Rights University Program. For years now, I have followed the development of the program. I’ve been extremely impressed with both the focus and rigor of the program, the quality of the presenters, and the quality and diversity of the student participants.”
Schabas also shared his thoughts recently on why he’ll be traveling from Ireland to participate in the program: “The GHRUP is a unique educational activity, with its intensive focus on the crime of genocide. It attracts some of the brightest students from around the world, who come to the program with informed and intelligent questions about the nature of the crime, its antecedents, and ideas about how to prevent it in the future. It has become, for myself, an essential element of the academic calendar each year.”
The program, which takes place in Toronto from Aug. 3-14, will appeal to a wide variety of students interested in various cases of genocide, their comparative study, as well as broader issues of human rights. Applicants must be current university students with three years or more of undergraduate experience. Limited scholarships are available for qualified students. The deadline for application is May 31.
For more information, contact the International Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies (a division of the Zoryan Institute) by calling (416) 250-9807 or emailing [email protected].
To view the syllabus, registration information, faculty biographies, and more, visit the program’s website at www.genocidestudies.org.