The design of genocide invites the incapacity of speech. Some responses: a) the madness of forgiveness – moving forward with incapacity, and damage (the way Bing Crosby, Judy Garland, Jimmy Scott, or Johnny Cash allowed their voices to change), b) a devotion to metaphor as the fruitful ruin of speech – where separate images bust out of jail and escape in the night to rob the bank, breaking their wrists to get out of handcuffs and collaborate with the new, and c) the vast creative capacity of silence. From Soulographie: The quiet of some genocide survivors in Rwanda was once called “guhahamuka” – or breathlessness; the focus on impairment. This fell out of favor, and was replaced with: “guhungabana” – to be shaken up. In pieces, awfully, but – open.
Genocide isn’t silence but silencing, namely with noise. When a victim or survivor asserts against erasure, when survival will speak subtly, humanely – that is to say diversely… genocide overwhelms with moronic simplification, with lies, with the noise of shelter being torn from joists and ripped from lath.