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Myths, practices, turning points

This book offers new insights into the history of the Red Cross Movement, the world’s oldest humanitarian body originally founded in 1863 in Geneva, Switzerland. Incorporating new research, the book reimagines and re-evaluates the Red Cross as a global institutional network. It is the first book of its kind to focus on the rise of the Red Cross, and analyses the emergence of humanitarianism through a series of turning points, practices and myths. The book explores the three unique elements that make up the Red Cross Movement: the International Committee of the Red Cross; the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent, formerly known as the League of Red Cross Societies (both based in Geneva); and the 191 national societies. It also coincides with the centenary of the founding of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent, formed in May 1919 in the aftermath of the First World War. The book will be invaluable for students, lecturers, humanitarian workers, and those with a general interest in this highly recognizable and respected humanitarian brand. With seventeen chapters by leading scholars and researchers from Europe, the UK, Australia, New Zealand and America, the book deserves a place on the bookshelves of historians and international relations scholars interested to learn more about this unique, complex and contested organisation.

Continuities, changes and challenges
Neville Wylie, Melanie Oppenheimer, and James Crossland

attempting to clarify ‘customary practice’ in the application of IHL, and updating Pictet’s 1964 commentaries on the four Geneva Conventions of 1949, in the hope, one suspects, of encouraging conformity. 8 The second element of the Red Cross Movement is the IFRC Societies. Created in the wake of the First World War by the national societies of the United States, Britain, France, Italy and Japan, the League of Red Cross Societies was officially formed in May 1919. Despite having a fundamentally different vision from that of the all Swiss ICRC – that of mobilising the

in The Red Cross Movement
Caroline Reeves

On 5 March 1895, word spread through the north Chinese port city of Niuzhuang that the Japanese army was on its way to take the city. 1 The Japanese had already conquered and devastated much of northern Manchuria in the Sino-Japanese war of 1894–5, and the Chinese civilians who had not yet fled Niuzhuang prepared what they could against the looming threat. 2 Scottish medical missionary Dr Dugald Christie, a prominent figure in China’s European-led first wave of the Red Cross Movement described the terror in the city: In the main street we noticed a very

in The Red Cross Movement
The Visual Politics and Narratives of Red Cross Museums in Europe and the United States, 1920s to 2010s
Sönke Kunkel

DC and the International Red Cross Museum in Castiglione, Italy. The second section explores the history of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum in Geneva, showing how it resolved challenges and limits of historical representation that the museum in Castiglione could not work around. The third section briefly maps out the 1980s and 1990s museum boom within the German Red Cross movement, before the final section, calling for more cooperation between public

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
An Interview with Rainer Schlösser, Spokesperson of the Association of the Red Cross Museums in Germany (Arbeitsgemeinschaft der deutschen Rotkreuz-Museen)
Sönke Kunkel

the whole first floor available for our exhibits. The centerpiece of our museum is the permanent exhibit which documents the history of the German Red Cross movement through the times, largely by situating it in the context of its international connections. We also do contemporary exhibits each year, usually framed around specific anniversaries. In 2019, for example, we had an exhibit commemorating the centenary of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. Other exhibits have focused on the history of Red Cross posters or the Geneva

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Open Access (free)
Valérie Gorin and Sönke Kunkel

Schlösser, spokesperson of the Association of the Red Cross Museums in Germany, provides insights into current practices and challenges of museum work within the Red Cross movement. Finally, Sara Falconer (Director, Digital Communications at the Canadian Red Cross), Zuzia Danielski (Communications Director at IMPACT), Rhonda Rosenberg and Chinye Talabi (Executive Director and Communications Coordinator, respectively, at the Multicultural Council of Saskatchewan) and Stephanie Leclair (Senior Manager of

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Four Conversations with Canadian Communications Officers
Dominique Marshall

transnational exchanges on the use of social media with the more experienced British and US partners in the Red Cross movement. Since then, the CRC has shared its own experience with other national Red Cross organizations. In 2017, in Bangkok, Falconer attended the triennial gathering of Communications Officers of the whole Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the Global Communications Forum. The five officers also follow the practices of ‘companies who do this very well’, as WUSC Communications Officer, Stephanie Leclair, mentioned. She also keeps abreast of

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Uses and Misuses of International Humanitarian Law and Humanitarian Principles
Rony Brauman

Cross’s need to proclaim those principles – which it conveniently calls ‘fundamental’ – is understandable. The Red Cross movement is a unique entity, neither public nor private, a legal category unto itself – neither an NGO nor an IGO. It has its own constraints and its own logic of action, which do not apply to other humanitarian organisations. That is one – but not the only – reason to question the universal validity of the principles it sets out. The other, more

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Hakim Khaldi

tactics to force rebel areas to surrender. These crimes did not prevent the United Nations and Red Cross movement from allocating the majority of their aid to the Syrian government. In conclusion, I would like to emphasise that the Syrians were and remain in the forefront of the country’s relief effort. Through charitable organisations (most of which existed before the conflict), informal aid networks, new institutions born of the rebellion and the initiatives of organisations

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Open Access (free)
Lewis Hine’s Photographs of Refugees for the American Red Cross, 1918–20
Sonya de Laat

1920, it was charged with financial ‘extravagances and other abuses’ ( Irwin, 2013 ). Although eventually exonerated, the damage had been done, resulting in a dramatic seventy-five percent reduction in membership during the November drive. Even The Red Cross Magazine folded by the year’s end. This was also a time when the ARC made moves to have the United States become the home of the League of Red Cross societies – a peacetime arm of the Red Cross movement. The ICRC leaders in Geneva were outraged that the ARC extended invitations only to Allied countries, a

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs