The pitfalls of national reconstruction: History, pedagogy, and politics in Rwanda's post-genocide educational institution
Haumschild, Daniel T.
MetadataShow full item record
The present dissertation addresses the way that educational institutions in Rwanda are utilized for generating political and social reconstruction in the post-genocide era. In the opening chapter, I present a thesis that draws a connection between educational and political practice against which the remainder of the dissertation is juxtaposed. In the second chapter, this work critiques the major historical narratives that have been advanced and policed by the contemporary Government of National Unity (GNU). Advanced here is a line of thought that remains critical of the GNU's mobilization of history. However, while addressing the use and abuse of history, this chapter also highlights the particularities of the government's position and advances a perspective that accounts for the unique way that historical narratives are generated in exile. In the second half of the manuscript, the dissertation turns toward an analysis of pedagogical methods that are utilized in three different educational institutions that respond to the history of genocide. In chapter three, I critique the educational tactics that are used at Rwandan genocide memorials. The primary argument underscores a problematic foundation of memorials that seek to amplify the visitor's sense of taboo. Chapter four takes the complicated ingando camps as its primary critical focus. After placing these 'solidarity and re-education' initiatives in their historical context, I offer a critique that challenges both the use of authoritarian methodologies and ingando's emphasis on unity that undermines genuine reconciliation. Finally, in chapter five, my critical gaze turns toward formal education in the southern town of Butare. I generated data for this chapter through interviews with teachers and administrators at three schools, and I intentionally place these findings in contrast to the previous chapters. The contrast between the nationalized institutions and these local spaces are indicative of both the popular complicity in the GNU's perspective and the subtle ways that local actors are resisting it.