The Peace Studies program is concerned with analyzing alternative ways that may be used to transform individual behavior, national policy and human institutions in order to promote peace and justice in the world. The program promotes discussion and study on issues of conflict and its management, within the lives of individuals, societies and the world at large. It sponsors research on meditation, mediation, negotiation and ways to reduce violence, build diverse communities and use nonviolent action to defend human rights and promote justice.
Undergraduates may concentrate in Peace Studies to complement any major. Students may also design a major in Peace Studies via the University’s self-designed major. The concentration draws together the knowledge of several disciplines in the context of the search for peace, while enhancing students’ critical-thinking skills and awareness of the connections between local and global issues. Departments and programs represented in Peace Studies include Geography, History, International Development and Social Change, Philosophy, Political Science, Psychology and Sociology.
Course work, research and internships enable students to apply their theoretical understanding of the issues of peace to practical situations. The concentrator will develop an active understanding of the relationship between the three spheres of peace: personal, societal and global. These are interlocked, each influencing the others in cyclical patterns. Conflicts often involve links between the hearts of individuals, the structures of societies, and global competition and cooperation. Hence, the concentrator should be engaged in understanding how personal development and societal and global structure can transform conflicts. Students who complete a concentration in Peace Studies are prepared to enter careers and graduate study in such fields as public policy, international development, labor relations, environment and ecology, and international relations. They are prepared to take an active role in shaping constructive policies in the public sector and civil society.
The Peace Studies Office provides information on internships, jobs and careers; a library; and a computer link to international conferences and bulletin boards.
For more information, please visit the Peace Studies Program’s website.
Requirements and Advising
For the Concentration in Peace Studies
Six courses are required for the concentration in Peace Studies. At least two of these should be at the 200-level; two may be from the student’s major. Students must take either ID 112 Issues of Sustainability, Peace and Justice or ID/PSTD 101 Introduction to Peace Studies as the introductory course, and at least one course from each of the categories of courses examining the four tools for peace: governance, negotiation, nonviolent struggle for justice, and personal transformation. Students also are required to complete an internship, directed study, or research seminar that is approved in advance by the director and involves at least one of the tools of peacemaking.
When you declare the Peace Studies Concentration, you must choose an advisor. To do so, obtain a Concentration Declaration Form from the Registrar’s Office, which must then be signed by your prospective advisor (any of the faculty listed at the end of this handbook) or the Director of Peace Studies. You may change advisors at any time by requesting a change from the director.
For the Self-Designed Major in Peace Studies
Twelve courses are required for the self-designed major in Peace Studies. At least two of these should be at the 200-level; two may be from the student’s major. Students must take either ID 112 Issues of Sustainability, Peace and Justice or ID/PSTD 101 Introduction to Peace Studies as the introductory course, and at least one course from each of the categories of courses examining the four tools for peace: governance, negotiation, nonviolent struggle for justice, and personal transformation. Students also must take three additional courses that address the following arenas of conflict – interpersonal, group processes, and war and mass violence. One of these courses must be at the 200-level. Students must also select two electives from the Peace Studies course offerings and complete an experiential learning opportunity such as an internship or study abroad program that has been approved by the Program Director. Finally, they must complete a Senior Capstone project or independent study that involves a paper or presentation that must be supervised by one of the major’s faculty and presented at Academic Spree Day. In order to ensure sufficient specialization and adequate disciplinary grounding, majors must minor (or double major) in one of the disciplines represented in the program.
Self-designed majors are required to have a committee that includes their advisor and two additional faculty members. Each of the three committee members must represent different academic departments. Consult with your advisor to identify prospective Peace Studies faculty for your self-designed major committee.
The following is a list of Clark’s peace-studies offerings. Students may petition the Peace Studies Committee to receive concentration credit for courses other than those listed below, including courses that are available through the Higher Education Consortium of Central Massachusetts. More information may be obtained from the Peace Studies Office, 201 Jonas Clark, (508) 793-7663.
Tools for Peace: Governance
Tools for Peace: Negotiation and Mediation
Tools for Peace: Non-Violent Struggle for Justice
Tools for Peace: Personal Transformation
Arenas of Conflict: Interpersonal Relations and Conflict
Arenas of Conflict: Group Processes and Conflict
Arenas of Conflict: War and Mass Violence
Internships, Directed Readings, Research and Capstone Courses
Belen Atienza, Ph.D.
Michael Butler, Ph.D.
James Cordova, Ph.D.
C. Wesley DeMarco, Ph.D.
Patrick Derr, Ph.D.
Debórah Dwork, Ph.D.
Anita Fabós, Ph.D.
Jude Fernando, Ph.D., Director
William Fisher, Ph.D.
Douglas Little, Ph.D.
Ken MacLean, Ph.D.
Dianne Rocheleau, Ph.D.
Robert J.S. Ross, Ph.D.
Srinivasan Sitaraman, Ph.D.
Valerie Sperling, Ph.D.
Ora Szekely, Ph.D.
Johanna Ray Vollhardt, Ph.D.
Kristen Williams, Ph.D.
Walter Wright, Ph.D.
Joseph de Rivera, Ph.D.
Courses offered within the last 2 Academic Year