Maniragena V. Tragic events of the 1990s in Rwanda in the works of Rwandian writers and musicians
Valens Maniragena — senior lector, St Petersburg State University; St Petersburg Electrotechnical University (Russia, St Petersburg)
ABSTRACT. The purpose of this article is to show how Rwandan writers and musicians perceived the war, and in particular the tragic events of 1994. The article briefly describes the events which took place in Rwanda in the 1990s: the war, its consequences, including internally displaced people and refugees outside the country, terrorism and the mass killing of civilians. These events, especially the genocide, have been reflected in the writings of various researchers. Many researchers focus mainly on the genocide, how it became possible and why, but do not pay attention to the war without which it would not have been possible. Given that Rwanda still belongs to the countries of oral culture, the study of artistic works, especially the period’s songs and books in the Kinyarwanda language, is of great interest. These works reflect the emotional state of the people and their national memory. The article describes a number of musical pieces by different authors and two books that indicate how the people of Rwanda perceived the events of that time and how those keep affecting the country and the people today. Understanding how Rwandans perceive these events can help unengaged researchers to find a path to reconciliation and national harmony in Rwanda.
KEYWORDS: Rwanda, war, genocide, songs, fiction
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