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Trent University Professor Co-organizes International Symposium on Rwanda Genocide

Prof. SagarraFor over two years, Professor Catalina Sagarra has been working with colleagues in Quebec and France to create an opportunity for the international community to convene and discuss the genocide in Rwanda. On April 25, her hard work will have paid off when over 110 delegates from three continents gather in Kigali, Rwanda to participate in Discourse on the Rwanda Genocide: An International and Interdisciplinary Symposium.

Sponsored by UNESCO and made possible through a partnership between Trent University, the Universitie du Quebec a Rimouski, the Kigali Institute of Education, the Universitie de Bretagne occidentale (France) and the National University of Rwanda, this four-day international symposium will bring together delegates from Canada, Europe and Africa, who all have an interest in discussing the genocide and ensuring that nothing like the events that took place in 1994 ever happen again. Through the utilization of funds from the Conference and Event Secretariat of CIDA, the Canadian-led conference will also provide a unique opportunity for over 60 people working for NGOs and grassroots organizations across Africa to attend and participate in the discussions.

The main goal of the symposium is to bring together a variety of individuals ranging from academics and researchers to citizens and survivors of the genocide and provide them all with an opportunity to share experiences and discuss the Genocide in an open environment. According to Professor Sagarra, it is an opportunity for people to "learn from each other, create links, and build solidarity."

A secondary goal of the symposium is to use the findings and discussions that come out of the four topic areas – education, psychology, semiotics, and history and law – to form a preliminary framework for a post-conference research group that would develop tools and mechanisms that would prevent future conflicts, genocide, and human rights abuse. The ultimate goal would be to strive for developing a culture of peace.

Discourse on the Rwanda Genocide: An International and Interdisciplinary Symposium will run from April 25 to 28 in Kigali, Rwanda. For more information, please visit the conference web site at

Posted April 17, 2006





























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