Stages of genocide
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Stages of Genocide. Raul Hilberg’s 4 Stages & Genocidewatch’s 8 Stages. Genocide as a Process. Eight stages that are “predictable” But NOT guaranteed Process is NOT linear Later stages must be preceded by earlier All stages continue throughout process. CLASSIFICATION:.

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Stages of Genocide

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Stages of Genocide

Raul Hilberg’s 4 Stages& Genocidewatch’s 8 Stages

Genocide as a Process

  • Eight stages that are “predictable”

    • But NOT guaranteed

  • Process is NOT linear

    • Later stages must be preceded by earlier

    • All stages continue throughout process


Is to classify “us & them”; create symbol meant to classify the group

German and Jew

Hutu and Tutsi


Hutu & Tutsi or German & Jew


Give names or other symbols to classifications

Distinguish by colors or dress

Apply symbol to members of group


Identity Card of Rudolf Kohn

Star of David


Denies the humanity of the group

Equates group with vermin, animals, insects or disease

Hate propaganda is printed

Hate radio used to vilify the group


Anti-Jewish Signage

Hutu Radio – Rwandan Genocide

Used terms “cockroaches” & “tall trees”


Plans made for genocidal killing

Genocide is always organized

Militia often trained by army units

Can be informal and/or decentralized


Interahamwe & Janjaweed


Extremists drive groups apart

Broadcast polarizing propaganda

Laws forbid intermarriage/social interaction

Targeting of moderates


Nuremberg Laws

Attacks on Moderates in Rwanda


Victims are separated out because of a certain characteristic Segregated or confined

Death lists written up

Symbols used

Property expropriated


A Crate Full of Rings Confiscated from Prisoners

Crates of Silverware

Taken from Prisoners

The Warsaw ghetto was sealed with walls.

This brick wall was built sealing the Warsaw ghetto off from the rest of the city.



Awarehouse full of shoes and clothing confiscated from the prisoners and deportees gassed upon their arrival

A large pile of brushes, that were confiscated from arriving prisoners, are stored in one of the warehouses in Auschwitz

One of the warehouses in Auschwitz, which is stuffed to overflowing with clothes confiscated from prisoners


November 10, 1938Night of Broken Glass


Wiping out of a group or culture

Victims are not entirely ‘human’

Downward spiral in society as a whole

Armed forces work with militias when state-sponsored


Majdanek: Death Camp

A prisoner who has been

subjected to low pressure

experimentation. For the

benefit of the Luftwaffe,

air pressure was created

comparable to that found

at 15,000 meters in altitude,

in an effort to determine how

high German pilots could

fly and survive.

Prisoners on a forced march from Dachau concentration camp

Gas Chambers

Gas Chambers


  • Not part of Hilberg’s 4 stages

  • Sure signs of genocide; mass graves, evidence of deaths

  • Deny crimes, blame events on victims, block investigations

  • Cover up evidence; intimidate witnesses

Genocidewatch’s 8 Stages

Hilberg’s 4 Stages

  • Classification

  • Symbolization

  • Dehumanization

  • Organization

  • Polarization

  • Preparation

  • Extermination

  • Denial

  • Identify

  • Isolation

  • Disenfranchisement

  • Extermination

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