Vol. 17 No. 1 (2023): Special Issue on Weaving Together Intercultural Peace Learning

Special Issue Co-Editors: Janet C. Gerson and Anita Yudkin

Editorial Introduction

The theme of this Special Bilingual (Spanish/English) Issue “Weaving Together Intercultural Peace Learning” is derived from a collaborative process to formulate the guiding inquiry for the International Institute on Peace Education (IIPE) Mexico 2022. It owes a great deal to the insights and practices of the Mexican and Latin American co-sponsors. These peace education scholars, practitioners, and activists invited participants to imagine how to reweave a shared social fabric by feeling-thinking a tapestry of intercultural peace learning based on a global interrelation of knowledges and emotions as driving forces for action. IIPE participants were particularly encouraged to submit papers for this special issue, based on their IIPE experience.

More specifically, this theme refers to conceptual understandings and transformative practices for fostering constructive interconnectedness and interdependence for peace learning, which explore the balance of sentipensar (feeling-thinking) and cognitive-emotional processes. This theme frames a shared inquiry for pursuing the possibilities of intercultural peace learning which embraces a plurality of forms of knowledge to address present-day global challenges as well as their local manifestations. Meeting these challenges requires building relationships across differences and fostering new kinds of learning. 

Contributions included in this special issue illuminate peace education and social justice from diverse approaches and ways of knowing. The authors have intercultural backgrounds, multi-lingual capacities, and come from various disciplines, experiences, and expertise. As such they provide a rich tapestry weaving intercultural peace learning.

Contacto intergrupal y repercepción como mediadores de procesos de paz intercultural: programa de encuentros de educación para la paz, by Leonardo González Torres describes an intercultural education initiative based on mindfulness, intergroup contact theory, and the practice of compassion in order to overcome prejudices and promote peaceful coexistence.  

Nuevas Realidades, Nuevas Prácticas: Esbozo de un Espacio Socio-Reflexivo en la Formación en Psicología Social en Venezuela, by José Félix Salazar Cruces, elaborates on an innovative learning experience in a social psychology program in Venezuela, given the complex manifestations of structural violence in the country. This learning, based on an interdisciplinary dialogue and recognition of diverse ways of understanding social reality provides for social transformation of inequities as well as personal and professional empowerment.

Pluriversal and Relational Pedagogies for Peace(s), by Daniela Lehner, provides a thorough yet concise discussion of key ideas in the field of decolonial pedagogies, and their relation to plural ways of educating and learning together for peace.

Local Worldmaking Through Little Dragons for a Better World: A Case Study of a Intercultural Community Building Project, by Vanessa Meng, presents a case study in grassroots aesthetic education within a diaspora Chinese community in the United States. It describes and analyzes an experimental educational approach enacted as a pedagogy of resilience in the face of the pandemic and the structural injustices it revealed.

Fighting Against Climate Change to Build Positive Peace: Proposal of an Intersectional Panel on Environmental Peacebuilding in Sudan, by Zhen Li, argues that climate change has exacerbated the violent situation in Sudan and that combating climate change can contribute to the decolonization of peacebuilding in Sudan.

Community Dreamwork as Intercultural Peacelearning, by HyoYoung Minna Kim and Stephanie Marie Knox Steiner, explores community dreamwork as a form of intercultural peace learning pedagogy and community building connected to themes of epistemic justice, decolonial praxis, and the importance of the learning that occurs in the in-between spaces. The article also explores a pedagogy of intercultural peacelearning, reaching beyond critical pedagogy through emotional, embodied, and other ways of knowing and being to achieve intercultural peace learning and sentipensante pedagogy.

Supporting Local Actors in Times of Conflict: The Civil Peace Service and Its Various Actors, by Samantha Ruppel, Bernd Rieche, T. Debey Sayndee, Christoph Schlimpert, María Requena López, and Daniela Pastoors, examines the German Civil Peace Service (CPS) working in (post-) conflict countries with the aim of involving and working together with local actors in local peace processes and as a form of cooperation.  It offers an analysis of an example of cooperative peacebuilding. 

Published: 2023-07-30