Clemson University

“We Charge Genocide”: Anti-Black Racism in the United States as Genocidal Structural Violence

Lisa Guenther of Queen's College will present the  talk “We Charge Genocide”: Anti-Black Racism in the United States as Genocidal Structural Violence:

"In 1951, the Civil Rights Congress [CRC] presented a petition to the United Nations entitled “We Charge Genocide.”  While the petition was never formally considered by the UN, the project of naming, analyzing, and contesting systematic anti-black violence in the United States has inspired activist groups such as We Charge Genocide [WCG], a grassroots organization challenging police violence against youth of color in Chicago. Both organizations engage strategically with formal institutions such as the UN in a way that exceeds the restricted agenda of those institutions and struggles for revolutionary social change.  But the UN’s narrow definition of genocide, and the analogy with homicide upon which it relies, pose challenges for this project.  I propose a concept of structural genocide, based on a model of social justice rather than criminal justice, as a tool for articulating the harm of policies and practices that undermine a group’s life chances, whether or not they directly kill people."

Guenther is Queen’s National Scholar in Political Philosophy and Critical Prison Studies at Queen's College in Kingston, Ontario.

Friday, October 13, 2017 at 5:00pm to 6:15pm

Brackett Hall, 120
321 Calhoun Dr., Clemson, SC 29634, USA

Event Type

Humanities Hub


College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities, Philosophy and Religion

Target Audience

General Public


Free event

Contact Name:

Edyta Kuzian

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