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PJSA Annual Conference

PJSA 2014 Conference

2014 PJSA Call for Proposals

The Peace and Justice Studies Association announces its 2014 annual conference…

“Courageous Presence: Shifting Stories and Practices of Peace”

October 16-18, 2014 in San Diego, California, U.S.A.

Proposal Submission Deadline (extended): April 30, 2014

To work for peace and justice from a place of hope, compassion, and persistence requires courage -- not only to face conflict, suffering, and violence, but also to claim one’s own share of the trouble and thereby disrupt the cycle of disowned projection that creates the Other. Such courageous presence invites spaciousness, creativity, and inclusivity. In this spirit, the 2014 PJSA conference invites proposals that tell new stories, shift perspectives on old ones, include participants who are not commonly at the table, and develop transformation and emerging possibilities.

Our conference will be held on the beautiful campus of the University of San Diego on a mesa overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Taking advantage of its location only 20 minutes from the busiest international border crossing in the world (San Diego/Tijuana), we expressly welcome proposals from Mexican and Latin American colleagues, as well as on border and indigenous issues. We also encourage proposals from the area of disability studies, as well as those from the broad range of fields comprising the conjoined areas of peace, conflict, and justice studies.

We invite maximum 150-word proposals by April 30, 2014 to the PJSA website:


Submissions may propose various formats, including papers and research presentations, roundtable discussions, teaching and/or skills-building workshops, poster sessions, panels, films, and creative works using a variety of means. Submissions from teachers, activists, youth, and first-time presenters as well as academics are welcome. For more information, contact: info@peacejusticestudies.org.


October 17-19, 2013

"Peace Studies between Tradition and Innovation"




The enduring tension between tradition and innovation, and between continuity and change, will be the overarching theme of the 2013 meetings of the Peace and Justice Studies Association, to be jointly hosted in Waterloo, Ontario by the University of Waterloo’s Conrad Grebel University College and Wilfrid Laurier University’s Department of Global Studies. Inspired by the broader Kitchener-Waterloo region -- where a long and distinguished history of Mennonite peacemaking exists alongside a growing reputation as one of Canada’s most dynamic high-technology hubs -- the 2013 PJSA conference theme honours the tradition, history and accomplishments of the peace and justice studies movement while simultaneously seeking to expand the movement’s frontiers in search of new and innovative ways to promote both the practice and the culture of peace in a divided world. The conference will include sessions from across a wide range of disciplines, professions and perspectives on issues such as the innovative use of social or communications technology in the promotion of peace, the use of unconventional or unorthodox peace promotion strategies by long-established actors in the field, or on the comparative accomplishments of ‘new’ vs. ‘old’ actors in the field of peace and justice studies.

Confirmed keynote speakers include: 1997 Nobel Peace Laureate Jody Williams (International Campaign to Ban Landmines), James Orbinski (Global Health Governance), George Roter (Engineers Without Borders), Rhoda Howard-Hassmann (Canada Research Chair, International Human Rights), Sylvia McAdam (Idle No More), Deborah Ellis (author - Teachers Professional Development strand), and Howard Zehr (Eastern Mennonite University - Mediation/Restorative Justice pre-conference session).


Concourse, Fred Nichols Campus Centre. Map: http://web.wlu.ca/maps/nichols.php. Directions: You can find the Concourse through the Fred Nichols Campus
Centre (FNCC) entrance or the Dr. Alvin Woods Building
(DAWB) (map). The Concourse is located outside the WLU Bookstore.

Registration will take place in the Concourse except Thursday October 17
from 6pm-11pm, when it will be in the Maureen Forrester Hall for
the Opening Plenary Session. Map: http://web.wlu.ca/maps/theatre.php

Thurs Oct 17: 9am-6pm (Concourse)
Thurs Oct 17: 6pm-11pm (Maureen Forrester Hall)
Fri Oct 18: 7:30am-6pm (Concourse)
Sat Oct 19: 8am-12pm (Concourse)

* * *

Alongside the main PJSA Conference, there will be a Student Conference for undergraduate and high school students (Gr. 11 & 12) who are passionate and interested in peace and justice.

The students will hear the main speakers (Jody Williams, James Orbinski, Rhoda Howard-Hassmann) and also have their own keynote speakers:

* Sylvia McAdam (Co-Founder, Idle No More)
* Brigette DePape (Canadian Activist)
* George Roter (Co-Founder and CEO of Engineers Without Borders)
* Shannon Moroney (Restorative Justice advocate, and Author of Through the Glass)

There will be opportunities to meet and network with other students, academics, and practitioners with extensive experience in the field of peace and justice.

The registration fee is $60.00 and can be paid when students arrive at the conference. Please register here to reserve your spot. If you have any questions or inquiries, please contact us at pjsa2013@gmail.com.

* * *

The 2013 Conference will also include a Teachers’ Professional Development Strand, featuring interactive sessions, case studies, sharing of classroom strategies or practices, or thematic units related to the following topics:

• Conflict resolution
• Restorative justice
• Restorative practices
• Social justice
• Peaceful schools
• Aboriginal perspectives on peace and justice
• Teaching about World War I
• Teaching peace in the presence of war
• Learning circles
• Faith-based perspectives on peacemaking
• System change issues related to peace or justice
• Alternative programming
• Section 23 classes and restorative justice

The keynote speaker for the TPD strand will be Deborah Ellis, speaking on "Children, War and Literature," will look at the lives of children around the world and how the decisions of the past impact the reality of today, and how we can encourage the present generations to make the sort of wise decisions that will lead us to a better tomorrow. Using examples from her own novels and books of interviews with children in war zones, Deborah will show the courage, kindness and creativity of youth under fire, and the strength of the communities around them.

* * *

Special Pre-Conference Sessions (Thursday, October 17, morning/afternoon)

Did you know that there are two Pre-Conference Workshops for which you can register? These take place concurrently on Thursday morning and afternoon (October 17) before the Thursday evening Main Conference Keynote Address. These Pre-Conference Workshops will be held at the Balsillie School of International Affairs (a 15 minute walk from Wilfrid Laurier University). The two options, with limited enrollment, are as follows (you can only register for one of them):

Post-Conflict Peacebuilding Workshops, open for PJSA registrant attendance. Theme to fit into vertically integrated peacebuilding (note: concurrent panels on peacebuilding will also be featured within the main conference). The keynote speaker for this pre-conference session is TBA; there is no charge for this session but space is limited. To reserve a spot in this pre-conference session, please email coordinator Timothy Donais: tdonais(at)wlu.ca.

Restorative Justice/Mediation Workshops, open for PJSA registrant attendance. The keynote speakers/facilitators for this pre-conference session will be Howard Zehr and Judah Oudshoorn; the cost for this session will be $40 (includes lunch). To reserve a spot in this pre-conference session, please email coordinator Sue Baker: sbaker(at)uwaterloo.ca (pre-payment options will be advised on receipt of email).

* * *

Special Saturday Night Event!

"War Requiem" by Benjamin Britten
October 19, 2013 7:30pm
Centre in the Square
101 Queen St. N., Kitchener, ON

The Grand Philharmonic Choir with the Grand Philharmonic Children’s Choir, Grand Philharmonic Youth Choir, Laurier Singers, Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony and soloists: Russell Braun, baritone; Leslie Ann Bradley, soprano; and Thomas Cooley, tenor. Mark Vuorinen, conductor.

The War Requiem is thought by many to be the greatest choral work of the 20th century. Britten’s heart-breaking music combines with Wilfred Owen’s poetry of the First World War, and the words of the Requiem Mass, to bring us an experience full of moral and emotional depth. Our performance marks Britten’s 100th birthday, and is offered in partnership with the Peace and Justice Studies Association academic conference, hosted in Waterloo.

If you would like to reserve a ticket (at special discounted rates for conference attendees: $55 for A+ seating, $45 for A seating, $35 for B seating, or $20 for C seating), please email as soon as possible: info(at)peacejusticestudies.org.

* * *

Conference-Themed Art Exhibit

Jamelie Hassan will present a conference-themed art exhibit (*Could we ever know each other....?*) at the Robert Langen gallery on the WLU campus: "Issues surrounding human rights, political conflict and cultural displacement have been a driving force throughout Hassan's art practice. *Could we ever know each other....?* continues to explore these issues and challenges viewers to re-evaluate their perceptions of cultural histories and the importance of civic responsibility. Selected works in this exhibition intricately intertwine ongoing and immediate global concerns with the artist's commitments to create a deeper meaning of these issues within contemporary society and our environment."

Jamelie Hassan is a Governor General award-winning artist who has had major exhibits at Canadian and international institutions. More on Hassan's work can be found here, here, and here.

* * *


BRIGETTE DEPAPE (student conference), is a Canadian activist from Winnipeg and a graduate from the University of Ottawa. She is now an active and vocal activist for environmental and social justice. By the time she headed for Ottawa, she was active with Students Without Borders, performed and written for Winnipeg's Fringe Festival, and was president of Manitoba's College Jeanne-Sauve social justice committee. DePape gained national and international attention as a Senate Page in 2011, who stood in protest during the Throne Speech. She has continued participating in protests and healing walks for the Alberta tar sands, and speaks across the country to inspire activism for justice. She also edited a book "Power of Youth," a collection of pieces on youth activism in Canada.

DEBORAH ELLIS (TPD strand), author of twenty books including My Name Is Parvana, and winner of the Governor General’s Award, the Ruth Schwartz Award, the University of California’s Middle East Book Award, Sweden’s Peter Pan Prize, the Jane Addams Children’s Book Award, and the Vicky Metcalf Award for a Body of Work. She recently received the Ontario Library Association’s President’s Award for Exceptional Achievement, and she has been named to the Order of Ontario. Ellis donates most of her royalty income to worthy causes — Canadian Women for Women in Afghanistan, Street Kids International, the Children in Crisis Fund of IBBY (International Board on Books for Young People) and UNICEF. She has donated more than $1 million in royalties from her Breadwinner books alone.

RHODA E. HOWARD-HASSMANN is Canada Research Chair in International Human Rights at Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, where she holds a joint appointment in the Department of Global Studies and the Balsillie School of International Affairs. She is also Professor Emerita at McMaster University. She holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from McGill University (1976), and as of 1993 is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. In 2006 she was named the first Distinguished Scholar of Human Rights by the Human Rights Section, American Political Science Association. She originated and directed McMaster's now defunct undergraduate minor Theme School on International Justice and Human Rights (1993-99).

SYLVIA McADAM, an activist with Idle No More, is from the Whitefish Lake reserved lands #118. She is a mother and grandmother, and enjoys spending time out on the lands and waters of her people's territory of Treaty Six. Sylvia has her Juris Doctorate from the University of Saskatchewan and a Bachelor in Human Justice from the University of Regina. She currently resides at her reserve in Whitefish lake and teaches university classes in Prince Albert. Sylvia is the author of the book Cultural Teachings: First Nations Protocols and Methodologies, a guide to appropriate traditional etiquette for individuals attending ceremonial activities of indigenous peoples in Saskatchewan.

SHANNON MORONEY (student conference), was born and raised in Ontario, Canada. She was a teacher, counsellor, and social justice advocate for several years. In 2005 she got married, bought a house in Peterborough, and planned to start a family. One month later, Shannon's life was traumatically altered. Her husband, who already was on life parole for second-degree murder, re-offended, physically and sexually assaulting two women while Shannon was away at a conference. Her book "Through the Glass" is an intimate account of her path "to be whole again" and serves as hope and solace to the families and loved ones of perpetrators, also describing a journey of restoration and forgiveness.

JAMES ORBINSKI, OC, MSC, Bsc, MD, MA, is a physician, writer, and humanitarian activist. He is an associate professor of Medicine at the University of Toronto and a Fellow at the Munk School of Global Affairs. In January 2011, he also assumed the Chair of Global Health at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, and in 2013 became the CIGI Chair in Global Health Governance and Director of the Africa Initiative at the Centre for International Governance Innovation. He was President of the International Council of Médecins Sans Frontières (aka Doctors Without Borders) at the time the organization received the 1999 Nobel Peace Prize.

GEORGE ROTER is the co-founder and CEO of Engineers Without Borders (Canada). He and Parker Mitchell founded the Canadian organization in 2000. Roter received a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Waterloo and left part-way through his master's degree to focus full-time on Engineers Without Borders. His area of research was orthopaedic tribology, particularly studying hip implants under John B. Medley. In 2004, he was selected to be on Canada's Top 40 Under 40 list.

JODY WILLIAMS is known around the world for her work in banning anti-personnel landmines, her defense of human rights – especially those of women – and her efforts to promote new understandings of security in today’s world. She was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1997 for her work as the founding coordinator of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines.

HOWARD ZEHR (Mediation/Restorative Justice pre-conference session), Professor of Restorative Justice at Eastern Mennonite University's Center for Justice and Peacebuilding in Harrisonburg, Virginia. Zehr previously served 19 years as director of Mennonite Central Committee’s Office on Crime and Justice. He is considered a pioneer in the field of Restorative justice, a response to criminal justice that focuses on repairing harm rather than establishing deterrence, and is the author of The Little Book of Restorative Justice, Changing Lenses: A New Focus for Crime and Justice, and numerous other books.


MARK YOUR CALENDARS! Upcoming PJSA Conferences

2014: University of San Diego (CA), October 16-18

2015: James Madison University (Harrisonburg, VA), September 24-27 (TBD)

2016: Selkirk College (British Columbia), dates TBA