Lynne Tirrell


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Lynne Tirrell, associate professor of philosophy at UConn, writes on a range of issues concerning language, power, and social justice, with a special focus on the role of linguistic practices in preparing, inciting, and executing genocide. Her focus on the 1994 genocide of Tutsi in Rwanda led to research trips to Rwanda and to the ICTR in Tanzania. Tirrell’s articles, on the politics of discourse, hate speech, genocide, transitional justice, apology, forgiveness, feminist theory, metaphor, and storytelling, have appeared in numerous journals, including The Journal of Philosophy, Noûs, The New England Journal of Public Policy, Philosophical Topics, The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, Hypatia, Metaphilosophy, and many edited collections. Recent publications include “Toxic Speech,” “Genocidal Language Games,” “Apologizing for Atrocity,” “Transitional Justice in Rwanda,” and “‘Listen to What You Say’: Rwanda’s Post-Genocide Language Policies.”  For most of her career, Lynne Tirrell was an associate professor at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, where she was also affiliated with Women’s Studies. Her first job after getting her Ph.D from Pitt was at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, where she was also tenured. Her BA is from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.