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The oneiric in representations of trauma

Exploring the status of the oneiric beyond psychoanalysis, Dreams and atrocity synthesises interdisciplinary perspectives from literary criticism, medical humanities, memory and cultural studies, history and art practice. The volume sheds new light on the relevance of dreams as modes of psychic resistance and historical witness as well as symptoms of trauma in modern and contemporary representations of atrocity. Central to the book is the articulation of the oneiric’s potential to awaken us to the pervasive violence of our contemporary world – providing us with the means not only of diagnosing but also of responding to historical episodes of atrocity, from twentieth-century genocide to contemporary racism and transphobia. The contributors develop new ways of reading the dreamlike in cultural works, foregrounding its power as an aesthetic mode and political tool. Organised into three parts – ‘Dream images’, ‘Dreams as sites of resistance’, and ‘Violent states’ – the book conducts a timely enquiry into the role played by the unconscious in processing and illustrating atrocity in an increasingly violent world. In so doing, it attends to the significance of dreams in dark times, illuminating the triangulated relationship between dream life, memory and trauma.

Open Access (free)
A bird’s eye view of intervention with emphasis on Britain, 1875–78
Alexis Heraclides
Ada Dialla

On intervention The great power involvement triggered by the Bulgarian atrocities was part of a wider international reaction to uprisings in the Balkans known as the Great Eastern Crisis of 1875–78, which was to change the map of the Balkans. Events began with the Serbs of Herzegovina (July 1875), followed a little later by Bosnia, the Bulgarians (April–May 1876) and the war of the autonomous principalities of Serbia and Montenegro

in Humanitarian intervention in the long nineteenth century
Pierre Fédida and Georges Didi-Huberman
Nigel Saint

Introduction This chapter seeks to bring some of the work of the psychoanalyst and prolific essayist Pierre Fédida (1934–2002) into focus around the topic of dreams, analysis and atrocity, and in so doing, to draw connections with the work of the art historian and philosopher Georges Didi-Huberman (b. 1953). Fédida does not usually feature in the rollcall of French psychoanalysts known

in Dreams and atrocity
Peter H. Wilson

9 • Atrocities in the Thirty Years War peter h. wilson At 7a.m. on Tuesday 20 May 1631, following a pre-arranged signal, 18,000 imperial and Catholic League troops converged on the Protestant city of Magdeburg in five assault columns. After an hour’s stubborn resistance, one detachment broke through a lightly held sector, and organised defence soon collapsed. A fire began around the point of entry and soon spread, engulfing the city and consuming 1,700 of its 1,900 buildings. Discipline broke down as the attackers dispersed to plunder before their prize

in Ireland, 1641
A Military Tactic or Collateral Damage?
Abdulkarim Ekzayez
Ammar Sabouni

Introduction Generating knowledge and learning on atrocities and extreme violence is indispensable but precarious and troublesome to conduct. Conducting research in such settings is very challenging ( Mfutso-Bengo et al. , 2008 ). Humanitarian actors, including local first responders, usually struggle to find a balance between collecting data and documenting lessons learnt on the one hand, and coping with rapidly changing environments and responding to acute needs on the other hand. Understandably, lifesaving pressing needs in the various forms of rapid

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Jessica Auchter

The after-effects of mass atrocity – bodies and bones – struggle to be defined within memorial projects. This article seeks to examine the politics at play in displaying dead bodies to interrogate the role of materiality in efforts to memorialise and raise awareness about on-going violences. It focusses on the nexus between evidence, dignity, humanity and memory to explore bone display in Rwanda. It then takes up two artistic projects that play on the materiality of human remains after atrocity: the art of Carl Michael von Hausswolff, who took ashes from an urn at the Majdanek concentration camp and used them as the material for his painting, and the One Million Bones Project, an installation that exhibits ceramic bones to raise awareness about global violence. In thinking about the intersections between human biomatter, art and politics, the article seeks to raise questions about both production and consumption: how bones and ashes of the dead are produced, and how they are consumed by viewers when placed on display in a variety of ways.

Human Remains and Violence: An Interdisciplinary Journal
Elyse Semerdjian

This article discusses how Armenians have collected, displayed and exchanged the bones of their murdered ancestors in formal and informal ceremonies of remembrance in Dayr al-Zur, Syria – the final destination for hundreds of thousands of Armenians during the deportations of 1915. These pilgrimages – replete with overlapping secular and nationalist motifs – are a modern variant of historical pilgrimage practices; yet these bones are more than relics. Bone rituals, displays and vernacular memorials are enacted in spaces of memory that lie outside of official state memorials, making unmarked sites of atrocity more legible. Vernacular memorial practices are of particular interest as we consider new archives for the history of the Armenian Genocide. The rehabilitation of this historical site into public consciousness is particularly urgent, since the Armenian Genocide Memorial Museum and Martyr’s Church at the centre of the pilgrimage site were both destroyed by ISIS (Islamic State in Syria) in 2014.

Human Remains and Violence: An Interdisciplinary Journal
Tadesse Simie Metekia

Atrocities that befell Ethiopia during the Dergue regime (1974–91) targeted both the living and the dead. The dead were in fact at the centre of the Dergue’s violence. Not only did the regime violate the corpses of its victims, but it used them as a means to perpetrate violence against the living, the complexity of which requires a critical investigation. This article aims at establishing, from the study of Ethiopian law and practice, the factual and legal issues pertinent to the Dergue’s violence involving the dead. It also examines the efforts made to establish the truth about this particular form of violence as well as the manner in which those responsible for it were prosecuted and eventually punished.

Human Remains and Violence: An Interdisciplinary Journal
Open Access (free)
Jeffrey Flynn

There are many uses of the innumerable opportunities a modern life supplies for regarding – at a distance, through the medium of photography – other people’s pain. Photographs of an atrocity may give rise to opposing responses. A call for peace. A cry for revenge. Or simply bemused awareness, continually restocked by photographic information, that terrible things happen. Susan Sontag, Regarding the Pain of Others The subtitle of historian

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Catherine Akurut

, 2017 : 4), the actual number of victims is presumed to be high ( Misra, 2015 : 2). Low reporting and help-seeking are primarily influenced by prevailing societal gender perceptions about men and masculinity, which makes it less likely for male victims to report or speak about their experiences ( Féron, 2017b ). Javaid (2016 : 287) finds that men find it difficult to expose themselves as experiencers of atrocities that are seen to primarily affect women

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs