The Art of Peace

How do we make an art of peace that rivals the arts of war and terror? As we approach the ten-year mark of the ‘long war’ against global terrorism and local insurgencies, witness new struggles of resistance and liberation in the Middle East, search for hopeful opportunities amidst a series of natural and man-made disasters, the art of peace takes on a new urgency.

This is the impetus behind an uncommon gathering of scholars, practitioners, artists, and filmmakers for a conference, The Art of Peace in a Time of War, June 21-23 in Quebec, Canada.

Initiated by the Global Media Project at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies, coordinated by Institute Professor James Der Derian and Visiting Fellow Nisha Shah, and funded by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the conference is co-sponsored by the Balsillie School of International Affairs, University of Toronto’s Canada Centre for Global Security Studies, University of Waterloo’s Conrad Grebel University College, University of Ottawa, and University of Texas-San Antonio.

Visit the conference website for more on the themes and participants … follow the proceedings on this blog … and listen for more media coverage on Radio Open Source.

We hope you will find new and compelling strategies for making peace in a time of war.

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  • Ryan Lester | July 5th, 2011
    While the first half of "The Art of Peace" focused on defining peace and understanding the mechanisms of conflict resolution and peace-keeping, the second half focused on the actual "art of peace." What does peace look like? What are the elements...
  • Ryan Lester | June 23rd, 2011
    Political analysis often focuses on the "big players," the people in power with the ability to make decisions. Popular culture is ignored, due to its lack of power or big players. And yet, the seeds of revolution are often sown here. Take, for...
  • Ryan Lester | June 23rd, 2011
    The Internet is changing. While, on one hand, the Internet has been championed as a tool for peace and resistance, and the democracy often associated with the two, it has also increasingly become a new space for warfare, a new tool in sabotage. As...
  • Ryan Lester | June 23rd, 2011
    Sure, structure such as institutions or treaties are necessary for human rights enforcement. With structure, you can keep people from killing one another or exploding into violence. But you can't make people like each other. You can't make real...
  • Ryan Lester | June 22nd, 2011
    Human nature and behavior contains many a contradiction. For example: anger and empathy. Anger acts as a defense mechanism, creating tension and conflict. It, inherently, is not a bad thing: without conflict, there is progress. However, it can often...
  • Ryan Lester | June 22nd, 2011
    The aesthetics of war have been explored in depth in both academic research and popular culture. After all, "war is sexy." But what about peace? What might an "Art of Peace" entail? The Global Media Project at the Watson Institute wants to ask if...