A COPY OF THIS PROGRAM CAN BE ORDERED FROM THE "ORF TONBANDDIENST"
(January 2014) is a text piece build around "Politics Of The Nose" - a
poem by David Mwambari (RW). "Politics Of The Nose" is a poetic tableau
vivant about the events of the Rwandan genocide in 1994, nearly 20
The two major populations in Rwanda, the Hutu and Tutsi people share the same religion, culture and language. But back in the early 90's Hutu extremists assembled together a pseudo racial theory and used that as a basis for a large scale anti- Tutsi propaganda.
Via public radio Hutu extremists were broadcasting hate messages and ordererd to exterminate the Tutsi people. Millions of Hutu moderates got manipulated and in April 1994 the whole propaganda machinery escalated in a bloody civil war.
Four months long a whole nation was haunting "the enemy", while actually often the enemy had to be found within oneself or one's relatives. Distinguishing a "real Tutsi" from a "real Hutu" is anyhow difficult due to intermarriage. So during this period of war and
terror tough decisions had to be made, often in no time: e.g. What if you were married to a Tutsi and had children with "enemy blood"? Back in 1994 brutal killings within one family or household were countless!
Anosmia wants to reflect on the almost absurd fact that a tiny part of the body, the nose, played a keyrole in the genocide: the length of a nose was decisive to classify the enemy. Even if your passport said that you were "Hutu", if you had a long and thin nose
you were considered a Tutsi, so you had to hide or run for your life.
Nowadays in Rwanda the subject of ethnicity has become taboo: it is by law forbidden to use the word Tutsi and Hutu in public.