7. Humanizing the Rohingya Beyond Victimization

Buddhist Violence and Religious Authority - A Tribute to the Work of Michael Jerryson - Margo Kitts

Grisel d'Elena [+-]
Florida International University
Grisel d'Elena is a graduate student at Florida International University.


In 2014, I began working on my MA Thesis titled, The Gender Problem of Buddhist Nationalism: The 969 Movement and Therāvada Nuns. The project was based on an analysis of interviews with U Ashin Wirathu and Buddhist nuns and Buddhist nationalist discourses of gender and violence against religious and ethnic minorities in Myanmar. It argued that Burmese Buddhist nationalists’ marginalization of the Muslim Rohingya ethnic minority is inextricably linked to their attempts to control Buddhist women. In 2018, I began to explore a fundamental issue that continues to plague the Rohingya—the emphasis on the Rohingya as victims of nationalist systemic Buddhist violence. This paper sets out to bring Rohingya agency to the forefront. Rohingyas are characterized as immutably foreign and Muslim—that is, they are labeled with an identity convenient to state-sangha oppression. Through interviews with relocated Rohingya society members and the mentoring of Dr. Jerryson, this work is dedicated to the rehumanization and devictimization of the Rohingya.

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d'Elena, Grisel. 7. Humanizing the Rohingya Beyond Victimization. Buddhist Violence and Religious Authority - A Tribute to the Work of Michael Jerryson. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. May 2022. ISBN 9781800501010. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=40728. Date accessed: 22 Jan 2022 doi: 10.1558/equinox.40728. May 2022

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