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Unpacking our History : Three Books to Inform and educate on the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda

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In today’s society, the younger generation might not have sufficient knowledge of our past history, particularly of the tragic events that occurred during the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda.

The lack of information and education on such events can hinder our ability to understand as young Rwandans the gravity of these events and hinder us from carrying on the legacy of unity and peace building and reconciliation.

Just as the saying in Kinyarwanda goes “ Utamenya iyo ava, ntamenya iyo ajya.” Therefore, we are responsible for learning about our past history, correcting our mistakes, and building on a better and brighter future.

Some books can enhance your knowledge and understanding of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda.

Jenoside: Kigali Genocide Memorial

This book was published in 2016, by the Kigali Genocide Memorial and is meant to accompany the important story of the Genocide against the Tutsi that’s told at the Kigali Genocide Memorial. It is written and has visuals that show what happened before and during the genocide. It also talks about the aftermath of the genocide and how Rwanda has sought justice for the perpetrators and embarked on a nationwide inclusive peace-building initiative.


Stepp’d in Blood: Akazu and the Architects of the Rwandan Genocide Against the Tutsi: Andrew Wallis

This book is written by the author Andrew Waliis and was published in 2019.It is a meticulously researched book that explores the origins of the 1994 Rwanda Genocide against the Tutsi. Wallis argues that the genocide was not a spontaneous outbreak of violence, but rather the result of a well-organized plan by a small group of elites known as the Akazu.

He examines the historical, social, and political factors that contributed to the rise of the Akazu and their ideology of ethnic hatred. The book provides a detailed account of the Akazu’s involvement in the genocide, including their role in the planning and execution of the killings.


That Child is Me : Claver Irakoze

Claver Irakoze, at just 11 years old, witnessed the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda. He wrote this book as a way of telling his story in the eyes of a child, in a gentle way portraying the pain and terrors of his journey during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

Mika Hirwa did the illustrations that accompanied the words, making Claver’s story come to life for a younger audience. The book also raises awareness to parents on how to best tell their history to their kids without traumatizing them.


The suggested books are a great starting point for anyone seeking to deepen their understanding of this devastating event and its aftermath. As we strive to move forward as a united and peaceful society, let us remember the importance of knowing and learning from our past.

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