Dr Rebecca Jinks

Personal profile

Rebecca Jinks is an historian of comparative genocide and humanitarianism. Before returning to Royal Holloway, where she completed her doctoral degree in 2013, she taught in the History departments of the University of East Anglia and the University of Exeter.


Her PhD thesis was published in 2016 with Bloomsbury, entitled Representing Genocide: The Holocaust as Paradigm?. It examines the ways in which representations of the Holocaust have influenced how other genocides are understood and represented, focusing on the ‘canonical’ cases of genocide – Armenia, Cambodia, Bosnia, and Rwanda – and the process by which they became canonised, using film, literature, photography, and memorialisation.


She is currently working on a project encompassing gender, humanitarianism, and photography in the aftermath of the Armenian genocide. After the armistice in 1918, an international relief effort (including the charity Near East Relief, and the League of Nations) sought to ‘rescue’ and ‘repatriate’ the thousands of Armenian women and children who had been ‘absorbed’ during into Turkish, Kurdish, or Bedouin households. Some of these women had been tattooed on their faces and hands, according to Bedouin custom; their marks, which signified their histories of sexual violence, raised questions for some relief workers as to whether they were ‘fit’ to be part of the regeneration of the Armenian nation. This research project is part of a broader monograph on the social history of humanitarianism after WWI.

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