Peace & Conflict Studies Major
Peace and Conflict Studies is an interdisciplinary major that studies the nature of conflict and violence, the possibilities of social change and the means for resolving and transforming conflict nonviolently. The major draws on Guilford’s Quaker heritage by seeking the roots of situations of injustice and oppression, exploring nonviolent social change, emphasizing each individual’s search for truth within different levels of community and focusing on practical problem-solving.
Peace and Conflict Studies melds two related fields of study, conflict resolution and peace studies, in a complementary, creative interaction. It encourages an interdisciplinary, holistic relationship between personal and social change, structured modes of conflict resolution and creative nonviolent activism, careful analysis of structural violence and exploration of spiritual foundations for peaceable living and action.
Students in Peace and Conflict Studies engage in critical analysis in several key components of the field: central concepts in peace research, the interrelation between the personal, local and global levels of conflict and possibilities of transforming conflict, theories of war and peace and methods and practices of conflict resolution, reduction and transformation. Students build skills that help them to solve problems of violence and conflict, to listen carefully and caringly to others in the midst of conflict and to contribute to organizing groups and actions concerned with social change and conflict resolution and transformation.
The Bachelor of Arts degree is offered in Peace and Conflict Studies.
The major consists of a minimum of 32 credit hours (eight courses).
- PECS 110 Introduction to Peace and Conflict Studies – 4 credits
- Any three PECS courses, must be taken at Guilford and at least two at the 300-400 level – 12 credits
- PECS 390 internship in the junior or senior year that builds on a student’s prior course work and incorporates peace and conflict studies analysis with site work – 4 credits
- PECS 465 Senior Seminar – 4 credits
- Any two additional PECS courses or approved Extra-Departmental Courses, which are offered by other departments and contribute to the global, social, or personal/interpersonal levels of peace and conflict analysis. 8 credits
- ECON 432 International Economics
- HIST 237 Europe in Revolution
- HIST 238 War & Peace in 20th Century Europe
- HIST 255 The Second World War
- IDS 405 Quakers, Community, Commitment
- IDS 435 Understanding Poverty
- PHIL 249 Pacifism and Just War Theory
- PSCI 103 International Relations
- PSCI 275 Asia and the World
- PSCI 345 Avoiding War, Making Peace
- PSCI 391 Globalization and Its Discontents
- SOAN 216 The Anthropology of Colonialism
- SOAN 425 Latin American Politics
- AFAM/HIST 225 African American History
- HIST 308 The Underground Railroad
- HIST 315 Civil Rights Movement
- JPS 220 Community Building Fundamentals
- JPS 244 Conflict Resolution Strategies
- JPS 424 Trust and Violence
- JPS 425 Family Violence
Total credit hours required for A.B. degree in Peace and Conflict Studies – 32 credits
A Peace and Conflict Studies internship involves practical experience that focuses on social change, nonviolent intervention, conflict resolution or transformation, and/or building a culture of peace. The internship includes critical reflection on the student’s experience and analysis of activities, experiences, and structures that contribute to the reduction and transformation of violence and/or the maintenance of systems of violence and domination. Students should register for PECS 390 with the director of peace and conflict studies.
Independent Studies and Senior Theses
If students have special interests that they wish to pursue that are not covered in Peace and Conflict Studies courses, they may arrange an independent study with an interested faculty member or pursue a senior thesis. We recommend that independent studies be done in the junior or senior year.