CJS Seminar: Hikmet Karčić
From Iain Mcgee
Dr Hikmet Karčić, University of Groningen, Netherlands
About the event
Book Talk –Torture, Humiliate, Kill: Inside the Bosnian Serb Camp System
Dr Hikmet Karčić's book will be published in March 2022 by University of Michigan Press, and he joins us to talk about it. See the University of Michigan website for full details of the book.
Half a century after the Holocaust, on European soil, Bosnian Serbs orchestrated a system of concentration camps where they subjected their Bosniak Muslim and Bosnian Croat neighbours to torture, abuse, and killing. Foreign journalists exposed the horrors of the camps in the summer of 1992, sparking worldwide outrage. This exposure, however, did not stop the mass atrocities. Hikmet Karčić shows that the use of camps and detention facilities has been a ubiquitous practice in countless wars and genocides in order to achieve the wartime objectives of perpetrators. Although camps have been used for different strategic purposes, their essential functions are always the same: to inflict torture and lasting trauma on the victims.
Torture, Humiliate, Kill develops the author’s collective traumatization theory, which contends that the concentration camps set up by the Bosnian Serb authorities had the primary purpose of inflicting collective trauma on the non-Serb population of Bosnia and Herzegovina. This collective traumatization consisted of excessive use of torture, sexual abuse, humiliation, and killing. The physical and psychological suffering imposed by these methods were seen as a quick and efficient means to establish the Serb “living space.” Karčić argues that this trauma was deliberately intended to deter non-Serbs from ever returning to their pre-war homes. The book centers on multiple examples of experiences at concentration camps in four towns operated by Bosnian Serbs during the war: Prijedor, Bijeljina, Višegrad, and Bileća. Chosen according to their political and geographical position, Karčić demonstrates that these camps were used as tools for the ethno-religious genocidal campaign against non-Serbs. Torture, Humiliate, Kill is a thorough and definitive resource for understanding the function and operation of camps during the Bosnian genocide.
Please accept our apologies for the abrupt start to the video - this was due to issues with the original recording.
About the speaker:
Hikmet Karčić is a genocide scholar based in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. He is a Researcher at the Institute for Islamic Tradition of Bosniaks (IITB) in Sarajevo and a Senior Fellow with the Center for Global Policy (CGP) in Washington, D.C. He was the 2017 Auschwitz Institute for Peace and Reconciliation-Keene State College Global Fellow.
Crime, Justice and Society Seminar Series
The Crime, Justice and Society seminars are co-hosted by the Criminal Law and Criminology subject areas of Edinburgh Law School and are open to all. We particularly welcome students from our LLM and MSc programmes to join us.
Image credit: Photo by Edin Hopic on Unsplash