Hutu Diaspora Narrative: Conflict of Identity, Identity in Conflict




Kuradusenge, Claudine

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This study followed three generations of Hutus in their diasporic communities. Seeking to understand the formation and/or transformation of their identity, the researcher aimed to explore the narratives of selves in the mixture of competing narratives. Classified as victims and treated as the Other, these generations offered an inside look in the individual and social dynamics that composed the general understanding of mass violence and trauma. As diaspora communities, it was essential to explore the history of Rwanda and its aftermath in order to identify the different narratives these communities were facing. A long with that, their sense of belonging to a nation was not only shaped by the homeland but also by their political attachment to both the homeland and host community. Therefore, knowing that their narratives of Rwanda and selves were competing with the official narrative of the 1994 genocide and the Rwandan government, these three generations were offering a different, maybe counter-narrative of their understanding of the events and their impact of the formation of identity in the perpetrator’s group. Consequently, the idea that guided this research was based on the examination of the identity formation of those labeled as perpetrators and their next generations. This research is a compilation of their narratives of identity and their understanding of the events, as well as the coping mechanisms their used in order to overcome their challenges. It is primordial to conduct such research since history tends to repeat itself. Often, victims become the perpetrators and perpetrators become victims.



Identity, Narrative, Rwanda, Hutu, Diaspora, Trauma