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Power, State and Camps in Rwanda's Unity-Building Project
306 pages, 2 illus., bibliog., index
ISBN 978-1-78238-832-6 $135.00/£99.00 Hb Published (October 2015)
ISBN 978-1-78920-072-0 $34.95/£27.95 Pb Published (September 2018)
eISBN 978-1-78238-833-3 eBook
FINALIST FOR THE AFRICAN STUDIES ASSOCIATION 2016 BETHWELL A. OGOT BOOK PRIZE
“This is a book that deserves to be widely read. [It] will appeal to both Rwanda and African Studies scholars and is a must-read for graduate students preparing to do ﬁeldwork in Rwanda. Scholars working in development studies, peace and conﬂict studies, comparative politics and cultural anthropology will be rewarded for a careful read.” • Journal of Modern African Studies
“Although the author focuses upon Rwanda’s unity-building project, she places her analysis within a wider social and political reflection. This makes the book a major contribution to the literature on contemporary Rwanda.” • African Affairs
“Against the backdrop of Rwanda’s complex post-genocide setting, Purdeková explores the unity-building attempts through which a ‘New Rwanda’ is being created. The visions and dominant ideology that underpin the national project, along with the strategies being deployed to achieve it, are addressed with rich detail and precision. This ethnographic study also offers a fine account of daily politics as lived by Kigali residents.” • Johan Pottier, SOAS, University of London
Since the end of the Rwandan genocide, the new political elite has been challenged with building a unified nation. Reaching beyond the better-studied topics of post-conflict justice and memory, the book investigates the project of civic education, the upsurge of state-led neo-traditional institutions and activities, and the use of camps and retreats shape the “ideal” Rwandan citizen. Rwanda’s ingando camps offer unique insights into the uses of dislocation and liminality in an attempt to anchor identities and desired political roles, to practically orient and symbolically place individuals in the new Rwandan order, and, ultimately, to create additional platforms for the reproduction of political power itself.
Andrea Purdeková is Senior Lecturer in Conflict and Security at the University of Bath. Prior to this she held a Departmental Lectureship in African Politics at the African Studies Centre, School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies, University of Oxford and a Junior Research Fellowship at St Antony’s College, University of Oxford.