German parliament recognises Armenian ” Genocide” ; Angers Turkey.


TOK TOPICS : Human Sciences /History , Language , Ethics, Emotion

Case description : The German Parliament acceded to a symbolic but fraught resolution on calling the Armenian killings in 1915 – a “ Genocide”. Turkey , on the other hand , has long rejected the term “ Genocide” and defended the mass killings in the historical context of global upheaval during World War I in 1915/16. While historians outside Turkey have recognised this historical massacre as a state organised ethnic cleansing that qualifies for the definition of “ Genocide” , Turkey has since long rejected the term “ Genocide”.

TOK LINK : The Turkish government did offer condolences to the descendants of Armenian victims recently , all the while refusing and rejecting the term “ Genocide” – it is according to them – a consequence of World War rather than an systematic attempt to wipe out Armenian population. Germany , who has embraced its dark pages of genocidal history , joined the 12 of the EU 28 members to recognise the killings as “ Genocide”. According to Germans , present reconciliation and cooperation can only be based on accepting and admitting the past wrong doings and that “Parliament is not a historians’ commission, and certainly not a court and that the current Turkish government is not responsible for what happened 100 years ago, but it does have responsibility for what becomes of this in present times” .


Sample KQs:

How does the use of word/language – “ Genocide “ become most significant and consequential in the above case study?


From an ethical perspective , do you agree that it is essential to revisit and embrace unfortunate historical past events to deal with the present ?