Related Events

Opening Reception and
Artist Talk

Monday, Feb. 23, 5 p.m.

Artist Jonathan Torgovnik will give a lecture and lead a discussion about his work and subjects, followed by a reception.

This event is sponsored in part by the International Center for Ethics, Justice and Public Life.

Rape as Military Strategy: Panel Discussion

Monday, March 16, 2:30 p.m.

Panelists will include Mark Auslander, Department of Anthropology, Brandeis University; Cynthia Enloe, Department of International Development, Community and Environment and Women's Studies, Clark University; Angelique Kanyange Rwiyereka, Rwandan graduate student at the Heller School at Brandeis, medical doctor and gender advocate; and Ellen Schattschneider, Department of Anthropology, Brandeis University.

Reading of the Testimonies

Tuesday, April 7, 4:45 p.m.

To mark the 15th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide, Brandeis students will read victims’ testimonies. Organized by Margot Moinester ’09 and Noam Shuster ’11. Part of an international effort organized by Foundation Rwanda.

Intended Consequences: Rwandan Children Born of Rape

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Flaviane Niragire (28) with her son Boy Nizeyimana (12), Kayonza, Rwanda


Photographs by Jonathan Torgovnik

Feb. 23 to April 9, 2009

“Intended Consequences” is a portrait series of Rwandan women who were raped during the 1994 genocide and have a child as a result. Torgovnik’s photographs give a voice to these victims, who are isolated by circumstance and struggling to restart their lives. With these stunning images, Torgovnik aims to create an international response to aid these women, the survivors of the Rwandan genocide.

During the 1994 genocide thousands of Tutsi women were violently and repeatedly raped over the course of months by Hutu militia groups, the Interahamwe. An estimated 20,000 children were conceived from rapes during the genocide and many of their mothers contracted HIV/AIDS during the same brutal encounters that left them pregnant. Often forced to watch the brutal murder of their parents and siblings, many of the women are the sole survivors of their families.

Odette, now 34, says, “I cannot really tell you how many men came to rape me. I can’t count them. All I know was that four months later I was pregnant. I tried committing suicide twice. Now I live with HIV/AIDS which is a legacy of genocide.”

Without family and outcast from their communities for “having a child of the militia,” the mothers Torgovnik photographs have little opportunity to send their children to school, provide for basic needs, or receive much needed medical attention. Compelled to act, Torgovnik has used this work to create Foundation Rwanda, a not-for-profit initiative to send these children to secondary school, to link their mothers to existing support services and to create awareness about the struggles these families face daily as a direct result of the genocide.

Born in 1969 in Israel, Jonathan Torgovnik arrived in New York in 1992 and graduated with a BFA degree from the School of Visual Arts. His photographs have been published in numerous international publications including Newsweek, Aperture, GEO, The Sunday Times Magazine, Stern, and Paris Match. His award-winning photographs have been included in numerous solo and group exhibitions in the US and Europe and are in the permanent collections of museums such as The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and the Bibliotheque National De France in Paris. Torgovnik was awarded the 2007 UK National Portrait Gallery’s Portrait Prize, the Open Society’s Documentary photography Project Fellowship and the Getty Images Grant for Editorial Photography. He has been a contract photographer for Newsweek Magazine since 2005, and is on the faculty of the International Center of Photography School in New York.

Torgovnik has developed this collection of portraits over the past three years. The exhibition will include 25 photographs, accompanied by selected quotes from the women’s testimonies, and a touch screen monitor that will showcase multimedia pieces developed by MediaStorm. An education curriculum guide, developed by Amnesty’s Human Rights Education department and addressing the consequences of sexual violence against women and the legacy of the genocide, is available. A powerful book, which documents this often untold aspect of the Rwandan genocide and includes a DVD featuring interviews with the women from Intended Consequences, is available for sale.

Aperture, a not-for-profit organization devoted to photography and the visual arts, has organized this traveling exhibition and produces the accompanying publication.

This exhibition was made possible by generous support from The Open Society Institute, Amnesty International and Foundation Rwanda. Additional support to Intended Consequences was provided by Henry Buhl, SanDisk, Kodak and the Consulate General of Israel, Office of Cultural Affairs, in New York.