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Scripting Mass Atrocity: Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge
AuthorHartmann, Shannon C.
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Research on mass atrocity sometimes ignores regional variations in violence when seeking to better understand the conditions under which this type of violence occurs. Using the performative framework, it has been possible to better understand the context and social dynamics under which violence occurred in Cambodia from 1975 to 1979. Variations in the interpretation of instructions from central leadership by officials at lower levels of government were analyzed to assess variations in the levels, intensity, and nature of violence within the Northwest and East Zones of Cambodia while under the Communist Party of Kampuchea’s government. It is clear that variations in the interpretation of ideological script and the implementation of policy varied and created different levels of violence across Cambodia. This analysis offers some explanation for the variations.