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Mass atrocity – Exploratory Essay

Part one: Introduction

Descriptions of a mass atrocity occasion only contrast along arithmetic lines; common discussions often  refer to the phrase – mass massacre or simply genocide. The rationales for the determination of committed atrocities are most likely as much structural as they are experimental: It is for this reason that most governments with that of the United States leading have driven much quantitative research on mass massacre  relying on the very small populace of visible case studies. However the current discourse revolves around one dilemma namely: what constitutes a mass massacre? The dilemma then shares a common objective of observing a mass massacre with the aim of stopping another one from occurring. This paper explores an inclusive and significant survey of the puzzling area of mass massacre definition (David, 400).

The exploration of  what provokes mass massacres begins by distinguishing mass massacres from other related groups of violence. It is critical to understand what makes something “mass”, as opposed to lots; what really makes something “dreadful”, as opposed to just condemnable; what makes something a “mass massacre”, as opposed to just political violence. It is for these three distinctions that the existence and shape of the mass massacre event is realized as well as the information regarding its occurrence. Thus, this section will address the issues in turn and make a significant conclusion composed of a critique of the agenda’s relevant assumptions.

Part Two: Explanation

Mass as a phrase primarily has a meaning on a numerical standard.  Thus, for most researchers dealing with quantitative datasets, it is used as a useful tool that used to determine facts and one that helps in observation. Unlikely enough for every other individual, the numerical measure simply raises many queries most of which are considered meaningful and worthwhile for instance the observational utility of a lone individual death. While this thought occurs, others are considered less meaningful and worthwhile for instance, whether the fatality of nine hundred and ninety nine individuals still count in relation to the death of a thousand individuals. Analysts suggest that due to such facts as numbers and quantity being a substantial definitional thread, then a mass occasion must be numerically immense. The numerical focus is also bound to be complemented by the use of additional quantitative and qualitative measurements. It is important to note that mass massacre event is also characterized by time after the use of numerical factors. Critical evaluation on this issue has shown that the time span of “mass” frequently and inversely relates to its numerical meaning. Thus, when researchers illustrate the Power assault used by the Hutus against the Tutsi and the less unfortunate Hutu citizens, it is relevant to note that, “As the Rwandan genocide took place, over one million people, nearly died in one hundred days.” A mass massacre’s velocity is inconsistent and illustrates the converse pressure of demise and time as omnipresent. Individuals anticipate life and to a certain scale, death to be a long prolonged affair, which is never the case, and mostly on a wider scale our revulsion generates differences. Thus, “mass” (David, 405).

Despite time and numbers having a common ground in the understanding of “mass,” other difficult dimensions exist. Mass massacre stands out to be a total event that involves violence touching on all aspects of individual, society-physical structural collapse, mutation of accepted norms and the eroding of the social institutions of welfare and trust. The effects of this kind of event’s scale are normally illustrative instead of destructive: much of the survivors’ literature indicate that most of the new institutions emerge to replace their fragmented forerunners, both after and during the event. These kind of social transformations are seen to be extremely massive exceeding the effects of the less significant forms of brutality. Nevertheless, their extent does not make them simpler to assess. The outcomes of a mass massacre are usually buried by the conflict stupor, which tends to lift with time.

Effect bounded criteria; time and quantity are categorized as victim centric dealings. They tend to analyze a mass massacre effect on the relevant and affected communities. These kinds of dealings are preferable, and justifiable as they establish ethical humanism as a general baseline. If there are multiple descriptions that define an event’s mass, then the essential factors of an act of violence are relatively undemanding. Hence, analysts suggest that in order to construct a comparative definition of “massacre,” it is important to relate to the current studies of genocide research, which is the mass massacre area most direct ancestor. It is through genocide studies that the public understanding of the total effects of mass massacre is heighted. As research continues to illustrate the forced torture and displacement within a particular environment of mass massacre, these kinds of abuses fall short of specific experimental and theoretical criteria. Mass massacre is also said to be more difficult to identify when it is based as a particular form of political violence.  The origin of mass massacre is illustrated in different ways by researchers. In general, these analyses mirror the difference, popular between peace building researchers with a collective agenda of equitable society or the factual nonexistence of aggression. Root causes are said to lead always the commencement of brutality. It is significant then for the mass massacre researchers to have a critical evaluation of the root causes rather than adamantly ignore them. Most importantly, mass massacre is more exactly illustrated as exponential. Its level effects upwards, producing increasingly frequent and larger suffering (David, 425).

Part Three: Conclusion

This paper then arrives at a significant understanding of “mass massacre” as a Meta occurrence, defined widely by most observational categories through its actual happening. It scales deeply from an infinitesimal factor – an individual, the local, the public- to the macrocosmic happening, which henceforth shapes greatly the popular analysis of a mass massacre course. Throughout the discussion, a mass massacre collective analysis differentiates between Mexico’s civil conflict, which had tens of thousands of civilians murdered, and Rwanda’s conflict, which experienced over a million fatalities. Thus, the description of a mass massacre as a meta happening does not duly dismiss the level of individual suffering, but rather suggest our research categories often shape our individual perception of the manner in which mass massacres are often started. It is for theses relevant reasons that this paper is an awakening call for a consistent and continued investigation. Research may help us understand a mass massacre’s fatalities, other than its perpetrators; the penalties of the global response, other than the local processes sidelined. Moreover, most significantly a dub for modesty where a mass massacre is apprehensive, doing something is never a solid certification.




David Scheffer, “The Future of Atrocity Law,” Suffolk Transnational Law Review 25 (2002): 389-432. Print.


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