Drawing the threads

peace and conflict today

Lecture 13 Monday April 4 2011 PEACE ST 1A03: Introduction to Peace Studies Dr Colin Salter, Centre for Peace Studies, McMaster University


• • • •
What does Peace mean? Cultural & Structural violence (un)civil disobedience & violence Conflict Transformation


What is Peace Studies

Two different conceptions:


Negative peace Positive peace


Positive peace is more difficult to articulate, and perhaps more difficult to achieve, than negative peace.
David P. Barash (1991)


‘You can bomb the pieces, but you can’t bomb it into peace.’
Michael Franti


Structural violence
Disparities, disabilities, and deaths result when systems, institutions, policies or cultural beliefs meet some people’s human needs and human rights at the expense of others. Structural violence creates relationships that cause secondary violence to occur.
Lisa Schirch (2004)


Cultural violence
Cultural violence means those aspects of culture, the symbolic fear of our existence that can be used to justify or legitimise direct or structural violence.
Johan Galtung (1990)



Speciesism and racism are both forms of prejudice that are based on appearances—if the other individual looks different [s]he is rated as being beyond the moral pale... both forms of prejudice show a selfish disregard for the interests of others, and for their sufferings.
Richard Ryder (1970) in David Nibert (2002)


Conflict is not a synonym for violence. Violence is only one possible response to conflict —  a collective expression, or political tool to achieve ends.
Jake Lynch & Annabel McGoldrick (2005)


Non-cooperation with evil is as much a duty as is cooperation with good.
Mohandas K. Gandhi


Taken literally, ‘nonviolent action’ would mean any form of action that does not involve violence or force such as beating, torture, imprisonment or killing. In practice, ‘nonviolent action’ has come to refer to a range of methods of social action that neither involve violence nor are routine parts of life or politics.
Brian Martin (2001)


(un)civil disobedience
• • •
To inflict economic damage on those profitting from the destruction and exploitation of the natural environment. To reveal and educate the public on the atrocities committed against the earth and all species that populate it. To take all necessary precautions against harming any animal, human and non-human.


Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable
John F. Kennedy, 1962


I am for violence if non-violence means we continue postponing a solution to the American black man's problem just to avoid violence.
Malcolm X


I do not, however, deny that I planned sabotage. I did not plan it in a spirit of recklessness, nor because I have any love of violence. I planned it as a result of a calm and sober assessment of the political situation that had arisen after many years of tyranny, exploitation, and oppression of my people by the Whites.
Nelson Mandela


For the first time in human history, our communication tools support the group conversation and group action. Gathering a group of people together to act used to require significant resources, giving the world’s institutions a kind of monopoly on group effort.
Clay Shirky (2008)


Who wants to be well-adjusted to injustice? What kind of human being do you want to be?
Cornel West


Conflict Transformation

a process of engaging with and transforming the relationships, interests, discourses and, if necessary, the very constitution of society that supports the continuation of violent conflict.
Hugh Miall (2004)


How might we reconceptualize our conflict so that we view ourselves as in it together and therefore getting out of it together?
Jay Rothman (1996)


In a conflict there is, somewhere, a contradiction. And in contradiction there is, somewhere, dynamism.
Johan Galtung (1996)


Few of us recognise our own prejudices, and normally we deny them, giving them what we deem valid reasons for our feelings and behaviour.
Fisher et al (2000)


The antagonist should be separated from the antagonisms.
Thomas Weber (2001)


• • • •
Negative & Positive Peace Approaches to peace (un)civil disobedience Nonviolence

• •

Transforming, not managing, conflict. Self-change


Citations & further reading
David P. Barash (1991), Introduction to Peace Studies, California: Wadsworth Publishing. pp. 5-12 & 25-29. Simon Fisher, Dekha Ibrahim Abdi, Jawed Ludin, Richard Smith, Steve Williams and Sue Williams (2000) Working With Conflict: Skills and Strategies for Action, New York: Zed Books. Johan Galtung (1996) Peace by peaceful means: peace and conflict, development and civilization, Oslo: International Peace Research Institute. Johan Galtung (1990) ‘Cultural violence’, Journal of Peace Research, Vol. 27, No.  3. pp. 291-305. Jake Lynch & Annabel McGoldrick (2005). Peace Journalism. Gloucestershire: Hawthorn Press.


Citations & further reading
Brian Martin (2001) ‘Nonviolent futures’, Futures,Vol. 33: 625-635. http://www.bmartin.cc/pubs/01futures.html Hugh Miall (2004) Conflict Transformation: a multi-dimensional task, Berghoff Research Centre for Constructive Conflict Management. PDF available online at http:// www.berghof-handbook.net/uploads/download/miall_handbook.pdf David Nibert (2002) Animal Rights/Human Rights: entanglements of oppressionand liberation, Lanham , MA: Rowman and Littlefield Jay Rothman (1996) ‘Reflexive Dialogue as Transformation’, Mediation Quarterly,Vo 13, No 4: 345-352. Lisa Schirch (2004) The Little Book of Strategic Peacebuilding, Good Books.


Citations & further reading
Clay Shirky (2008). Here Comes Everybody: the Power of Organizing Without Organizations, Penguin Press. Thomas Weber (2001) ‘Gandhian Philosophy, Conflict Resolution Theory and Practical Approaches to Negotiation’, Journal of Peace Research, vol. 38, no. 4, 2001, pp. 493–513.


Image sources
Peace flag, original source unknown. Marc Riboud. Jan Rose Kasmir, protest against the Vietnam War outside the Pentagon, Arlington County, Virginia, Saturday, 21 October, 1967 — http:// en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_Rose_Kasmir Elisa Iannacone. As leaders of the G20 nations gathered in Toronto, Canada, protesters took to the streets [caption]. ‘G20 summit protests in Toronto :Your pictures’, BBC News, 27 June 2010 — http:// www.bbc.co.uk/ news/10427404 ‘The U.S. vs. John Lennon’ reproduced from Jürgen Fauth’s Muckworld — http://jurgenfauth.com/2007/02/14/theus-vs-john-lennon/ Iceberg from Media for Peacebuilding — http://mediaforpeacebuilding.com/peace-media-2/1-peace-conflicttheory/


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