john docker on raphaël lemkin and ilan pappé


John Docker, ‘Instrumentalising the Holocaust: Israel, Settler-Colonialism, Genocide (Creating a Conversation between Raphaël Lemkin and Ilan Pappé)’, Holy Land Studies 11 (2012).

With the appearance in 2010 of an essay by Martin Shaw, ‘Palestine in an International Historical Perspective on Genocide’, Holy Land Studies has taken the hermeneutic initiative in bringing together into the one field of analysis two areas that have usually been kept separate, genocide studies and studies of the history of Palestine-Israel. In an important challenge to contemporary scholarship, Shaw makes a cogent critique of the notion of ‘ethnic cleansing’ as euphemistic and perpetrator-inflected. I follow Shaw in translating ‘ethnic cleansing’ as ‘genocide’ of a group or society by deploying the terms and argument of Raphaël Lemkin, the creator of the concept of ‘genocide’ and prime mover in the 1948 UN Convention on genocide.

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