What roles do hate speech and propaganda play in violent conflicts where genocide and crimes against humanity occur?
Do they direct violence? Do they influence people who are typically non-violent to commit acts of violence, or are they just one factor helping to create a permissive environment for violence?
What is the difference between certain forms of hate speech and propaganda and actual incitement to genocide? How does the law help clarify situations? What does it leave unaddressed?
These questions and many others were examined in a seminar hosted by the Museum in February 2009. The gathering assembled experts from many different fields who shared research, knowledge and insights on the role of hate speech in situations of genocide and related crimes against humanity.
View our Executive Summary, which outlines the key findings from the seminar.
Five case studies were explored:
This report is based on a seminar held in February 2009 at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum and is related to the Museum’s initiative on propaganda and special exhibition. The seminar was made possible by the generous support of the Sudikoff Family Foundation which funds the Sudikoff Annual Interdisciplinary Seminar on Genocide Prevention.