"Global Intercultural Citizenship (GIC) in Rwandan Reconstructive

"Global Intercultural Citizenship (GIC) in Rwandan Reconstructive Dialogue"
by David Balosa (University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, Maryland)
& Seif Sekalala (Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsyvania)
This paper is a contribution to Human Dignity and Humiliation Studies workshop Transforming
humiliation into dignity. Its main purpose is to propose a theoretical and a practical framework
in support to the encouraging effort that Rwandan reconstructive dialogue process (or processes)
as a psychological, moral political philosophical, and sociolinguistic exemplar approach in the
establishment of genuine communication in intercultural relations. The context in which
Rwandan Reconstructive dialogue is taking place serves a transformational model in the
understanding of imperfect human beings as not only self-destructing creatures but also as selfreconstructing souls. For this reason, the complexity of the process (or processes) deserves
multidisciplinary perspectives if a long term local and global intercultural reconstructive
dialogue model that dignify humanity should set a pattern for the rest of the world to learn from.
This paper argues that many past, present, and future local or national intercultural conflicts may
have been avoided if our common humanity is addressed and taken care of in a Global
intercultural citizenship perspective (Balosa, 2006; 2013). As I envision it, global intercultural
citizenship is a symbolic global mindset capital (SGMC) which operational goal is to promote
and sustain human dignity within unity of differences and the exercise of powers for the common
good and which as a multidisciplinary theoretical framework, encompasses the field of social
psychology, moral and political philosophy, and sociolinguistic.
Methods for this research
This study is literature review of Frantz Fanon’s Black skin white masks, Baldwin et al.’s
Intercultural Communication for everyday life (2014) and Prunier ‘s The Rwanda Crisis: History
of a genocide (1997).
Theoretical Framework
This study explores the theory of “New humanity” (Fanon, 2008 [1958], ‘Language and
globalization” Faircough (2006), and “A question of trust” O’Neill (2002). These three
theoretical frameworks should help us to understand and to actively contribute in any capacity
we can in changing the discourse of human self-destruction ways of power relations’
management toward a discourse of self-reconstructive dialogue for effective power relations and
common good (Merleau-ponty, 1969, Gil, 1992, Hymes, 2005, Moham, 2011; Nikolaev, 2011).
The fact that the Rwandan genocide affected and still affects the emotion of the international
community, the active effort that the Rwandan people are putting forth in the recovery processes
toward moving from a society of, in the words of the philosopher Kwame Anthony Apphia
“honor of killing” (Appiah 2010, p. xvi) to a human dignifying society needs to be researched
and promoted. Scholars in social sciences and humanities should show a special interest in the
change in social life and in the way that intercultural relations are taking place in Rwanda after
just two decades of a historical genocide that took 500,000 to 1,000,000 lives and had left
millions others in a chocking humiliation caused by illiteracy, poverty, and a total human
mistrust (Prunier, 19997). It is in this reasoning that global intercultural citizenship, as a
multidisciplinary theoretical framework can contribute in disseminating the kind of discourse of
transformation that embrace a moral and social politic of honorable human diversity. The
Rwandan historical language policy change and its ongoing result in improving Rwandan
citizens’ life in particular and the nation integration in global economy despite of any setbacks
proper to human imperfection is worthy of attention. It reminds us all about human beings’
power of cultural adjustment (Nussbaum, 1997; Anderson, 2006; Fairclough, 2006; Fishman,
1999; 2006, Harbet et al. 2009; Labov, 2012).
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