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Chapter 8

IDSA01H3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 8: Peacebuilding, Structural Violence, Peace Education

International Development Studies
Course Code
Leslie Chan

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Conflict, Peacebuilding, and Education:
Rethinking Pedagogies in Divided Societies Latin America, and around the World
Kathy Bickmore
- How people experience and handle conflict depends on their location in the changing
social, political and cultural contexts that shape their learning and their options for
-Structural, cultural, and direct physical violence disproportionately harm people
with the least social power, such as girls and marginalized groups, thereby deepening
social inequality— ie, segregated residential schools, forced upon aboriginal peoples in
North America, deepened still-ongoing colonial oppression through physical, sexual,
spiritual, and cultural violence
-Most major armed conflicts today are civil wars and insurgencies, not inter-state
-Schools and teachers, because of their relationship to human rights and to nation-
state employers, are often specifically targeted in terrorism and war
-Resources allocated to armaments are thereby denied to human needs or to education
- Conversely, after Costa Rica abolished its army in 1948 and allocated the savings to
public education and health, it became the most prosperous and peaceful country in
Central America—-Clearly escalated violence is a barrier to (any) education.
- Norwegian peace studies theorist Galtung refers to social structural inequity,
discrimination and exclusionwhich themselves constitute (indirect) harm and may
provoke direct physical violence—as “structural violence.”
-“Cultural violence”—-means collective beliefs and attitudes that legitimize enmity,
direct violence and structural violence (Galtung, 1990)
-institutional factors, such as support for achievement equity within schools, may help
to shape the possibilities for peace by reducing structural violence
- USA cultural theorist Rob Nixon uses the term “slow violence”—- to describe gradual
or delayed massive harm, occurring through accretion or attrition, like environmental
- Resistance to such violence, Nixon argues, involves mobilizing dramatic images and
narratives that make visible the violence of formerly anonymous disasters—a kind of
informal (media) education.
Differing Goals for Peace Education!
- Paradoxically, though education can exacerbate destructive social conflict,
educational initiatives and reforms also can be essential elements of peacebuilding
- Beyond facilitating development of capacities, relationships, opportunities, access,
and confidence, education can increase peoples understanding of the nature and
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