SOC310H1: Sociology of Atrocities

Previous Course Number: 
SOC397H1
Hours: 
24L

This course focuses on the sociology of atrocities. We focus on the range of social actors and processes involved when atrocities occur, how we identify, name, and respond to atrocities (such as genocide or crimes against humanity), the behavior of bystanders and intervenors, cultural trauma and the effects of atrocities, and processes of commemoration. We investigate the collective and social dynamics to try and explain the role of individuals, groups, and institutional actors in committing atrocities, including the role of group identities, bureaucracies, collective decision-making, shared repertoires, legacies of hate, and peer networks. We study the role of other actors – in particular legal institutions, but also humanitarian bodies, journalists, and others – in identifying, naming and sometimes responding to these atrocities, along with sociological evidence about how they do so and the efficacy of any such response.

Prerequisite: 

1.0 SOC FCE at the 200+ level

Exclusion: 

SOC330H1; SOC395H1F (13/14); SOC397H1 (Selected Topics in Sociological Research: International Criminal Justice & Atrocities), offered in Winter 2015 and Winter 2016

Distribution Requirements: 
Social Science
Breadth Requirements: 
Society and its Institutions (3)