This is a comparative study of sexual violence as a genocidal weapon, with global reach and detail. It is one of the most nuanced, illuminating, and grimly engaging volumes on rape and mass violence yet published. The authors and editors frequently foreground the individual victims and survivors of these perhaps most intimate atrocities, and their critical framing of sometimes barely-imaginable experiences always resonates.
Experts in law, history, philosophy, and women’s studies join therapists and activists to present the issues and analyze key documents, many of them accounts from victims of rape, from the Holocaust, Rwanda, Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and elsewhere. Relentless and unflinching, those accounts speak of despair and hope, resilience, pain, shame, and loss. Each chapter deals very personally with the agony of rape and the challenges it poses to male behavior, international law, and political action. The book is a memorial to female suffering and a deep challenge to all men to abandon forever the kind of masculinity that perpetrates such wickedness. These stories in this book will not produce despair, but clarity—about action, love, and hope for the human spirit.
This book’s 13 chapters are designed for students but of urgent importance to anyone who cares about the ravages of sexual violence and war. The useful introduction and the discussion questions at the end of each chapter make Rape: Weapon of War and Genocide additionally valuable for university courses in genocide studies, gender studies, and international law.