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Dehumanization; the loss of humanity

Amber McKellop

on 15 November 2012

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Transcript of Dehumanization

transitive verb
: to deprive of human qualities, personality, or spirit Genocide Slavery Heart of Darkness Genocide is a result of dehumanization all around the world. History contains several accounts of genocide but it is far from an outdated topic. Today, genocide is present in more than 30 countries, including several African countries like Rwanda. Studies from researchers consisting of psychologists and behavioral expertise show 8 common stages leading to acts like genocide. Another severely dehumanizing concept is slavery. The history of African American slaves in early America is not a foreign topic for US citizens. White men ruled American soil and black men were property. White men had every basic human right and then some, while black men were denied everything except survival (in some cases). What some may not realize is that slavery is not an idea only existent in the text of a history book, slavery is very much alive today as it was hundreds of years ago. HAS TO STOP Dehumanization Classification STAGE 1 CLASSIFICATION Symbolization STAGE 2 Symbolization Dehumanization STAGE 3 Dehumanization Organization STAGE 4 Organization Polarization STAGE 5 Polarization Preparation STAGE 6 Preparation Extermination STAGE 7 Extermination Denial STAGE 8 Denial Humans have many characteristics that separate one from another. Hair color, eye color, height, age, gender, race, etc... The classification of humans is picking a certain quality or characteristic, labeling a group based on those factors, and eliminating individuality in doing so. Symbols, or labels, result from classification. During the Holocaust, the Star of David became a symbol for Jews and the Swastika identified Nazis. Symbols are only harmful when combined with hate and followed by dehumanization, the 3rd stage. The 3rd stage of genocide, and probably the most influential, is dehumanization. One group denies the humanity of another group. During this stage, the victim is equal to an animal or disease. They are denied their rights as human beings and physical as well as emotional terrorism begins. Mass genocidal killings could not occur without serious organization. Highly trained militias are very common in acts of genocide. Members of such armies are educated in ways that encourage organization for genocide by establishing prejudice views and elaborate plans for extermination. During this stage, division intensifies. For the perpetrators, the victims become "them" and themselves as well as their fellow killers become "us"; superior vs. inferior. At this point, a blueprint is drawn out for the remaining steps of genocide. Lists are made with names of victims, names of the weak, the stubborn, the young, and the old. The targeted groups are put into proper living conditions, meant for those whose time is limited. Starvation, abuse and neglect are almost inevitable as the perpetrators finalize their plans for extermination. Extermination is what can legally be called genocide. Although each preceding stage ultimately leads to genocide, it is not until this mass killing when it can be labeled so. The process of extermination has had many different approaches in the past. Anything from organized shootings to gas chambers, extermination is the killing of these large groups because of their original classification. Denial almost always follows genocide. The perpetrators attempt to cover up their crimes by burning evidence, terrorizing their victims away from confession, and denying any accusations of genocide. Slavery Timeline 8000 BC 1939 1930 Prehistoric graves suggest a Libyan people enslaved a San-like tribe Egypt Africa 2 million slaves in Ethiopia Europe Nazis begin to enslave those who are "lesser beings" 1750 America Slavery is an institution in 13 colonies 1865 Slavery is abolished America 2012 Women and children are sold and traded as sex slaves All Around the World NOW Years Passed get this... There are more slaves 12 million - 27 million That's a HUGE number! Most slaves today are in debt... Their parents were criminals because... Their parents owed money that.... Their parents never paid. Human Trafficking Some slaves today are They're trafficked across borders and most of them are used for sexual industries. Women and Children in the 21st century, than And still today.... There are 7.6 million FORCED LABOR slaves Wait.... Forced Labor? Why would forced labor be present in a world rich with new technology? Because someone thought... "mechanical labor has most of the economic properties of slave labor, though ... it does not involve the direct demoralizing effects of human cruelty" Norbert Weiner So to sum things up.. Slavery Still Exists! The idea that anyone is lesser than you, simply because of who they are is ignorant so next time you feel like calling someone a word like... Think about REAL dehuminization happening around the world. LIVES TAKEN RIGHTS STOLEN HUMANITY LOST In the novel Heart of Darkness, Joseph Conrad uses his character Marlow's story to reveal the dark truth about imperialism and shine some light on the disguised dehumanization that occurred in Africa in the late 1800s. Controversy over the content of the novel challenged Conrad's intended message in Heart of Darkness. People were unsettled by his apparent criticism of modern imperialism Critics accuse him of racism. a century ago Today The degrading description of the natives, "creatures" "shapes" "savages" "criminals" "the enemy" are justifiably offensive. But that's the point... In writing this novel, Conrad; exposed an idea like imperialism for the horror that it really was, rather than the "heroic" act that many believed it to be. enlightened an ignorant or uneducated people about the dehumanization happening right next door and intended to reveal the mindset of Europeans heading into Africa. The dehumanizing description and apparent prejudices are not necessarily Conrad's personal beliefs. if dehumanization continues... An endless battle for power and superiority will continue Diversity, individuality, and morality will decrease Millions will continue to suffer Billions of lives will be lost Dehumanization strips the rights of individuals and humanity is lost through the acts of rape, violence, racism, murder, assault, abuse, neglect, degradation, manipulation, imprisonment, fraud, greed, captivity, kidnapping, adultery, prostitution, drug use, forced labor, intolerance, starvation, ignorance... degredation prejudice tolerance turn it around In
Text... The word ‘ivory’ rang in the air, was whispered, was sighed. You would think they were praying to it. A taint of imbecile rapacity blew through it all, like a whiff from some corpse. By Jove! I’ve never seen anything so unreal in my life. And outside, the silent wilderness surrounding this cleared speck on the earth struck me as something great and invincible, like evil or truth, waiting patiently for the passing away of this fantastic invasion. " " I know nothing as to the fate of the less valuable animals. They, no doubt, like the rest of us, found what they deserved. I did not inquire. " " It was unearthly, and the men were—No, they were not inhuman. Well, you know, that was the worst of it—the suspicion of their not being inhuman. It would come slowly to one. They howled and leaped, and spun, and made horrid faces; but what thrilled you was just the thought of their humanity—like yours—the thought of your remote kinship with this wild and passionate uproar. Ugly. Yes, it was ugly enough; but if you were man enough you would admit to yourself that there was in you just the faintest trace of a response to the terrible frankness of that noise, a dim suspicion of there being a meaning in it which you—you so remote from the night of first ages—could comprehend. And why not? " "
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