THE BERLIN MOOT – A conference pioneering new approaches to peace: 17-18 April in Berlin

THE BERLIN MOOT: A peace conference on 17-18 April

8 Sep 2016

The “Violence Turn” in Peace Studies and Practice

Berghof Handbook Dialogue Series No. 12 - comment

Bernardo Arévalo de León and Ana Glenda Tager have written a succinct and substantive article, which adds to evidence of a shift from the centrality of war and conflict (armed and non-armed) in the study and practice of peace, towards a focus on violence, or rather that aspect of violence the authors call “armed social violence”. Violence, I argue, is the opposite of peace and this step towards recognising the wider expressions of violence is to be greatly welcomed. Violence is extensively studied, but in disciplinary silos. We lack a “converter” to enable us to interpret the learning from these various silos and to help us build new understandings of the varied mechanisms of violence reproduction and reduction. Despite nods to interdisciplinarity, academia reinforces the silos, while practice cannot easily embrace the complexity within and between each.


Jenny Pearce


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