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Rwanda Since 1994Stories of Change$
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Hannah Grayson and Nicki Hitchcott

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781786941992

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781786941992.001.0001

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‘One Rwanda For All Rwandans’: (Un)covering the Twa in Post-Genocide Rwanda

‘One Rwanda For All Rwandans’: (Un)covering the Twa in Post-Genocide Rwanda

Chapter:
(p.125) ‘One Rwanda For All Rwandans’: (Un)covering the Twa in Post-Genocide Rwanda
Source:
Rwanda Since 1994
Author(s):

Meghan Laws

Richard Ntakirutimana

Bennett Collins

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.3828/liverpool/9781786941992.003.0008

The leading academic literature on Rwanda tends to focus on the Hutu-Tutsi dichotomy, either directly or indirectly, thus resigning the historical narratives of the Twa to a footnote, permanently buried in history. Based on interviews and focus groups, as well as personal testimony provided by three Twa civil society leaders, this chapter explores Twa perceptions and experiences of national unity and reconciliation during the post-genocide period. As a component of this, our chapter examines popular perceptions of the Historically Marginalized Peoples (HMP) label, a quasi-legal category generally associated with the Twa, within the broader framework of the government's unity-building and reconciliation campaign. This snapshot of Twa interactions with government policy and practice shows that Twa often feel excluded from efforts to foster national pride, unity and reconciliation. Equally, the majority of Twa object to the use of the HMP label, and many emphasize the continued relevance of Twa identity and culture at a community level.

Keywords:   Batwa, Forest Peoples, Political transition, Post-genocide reconstruction, National unity and reconciliation, Historically marginalized peoples, Bottom-up perspectives, Rwanda, Twa

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