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Understanding and Resisting Violence

Beginning in the fall of 2016, the Center for the Arts and Humanities, in partnership with the Political Science Department and several campus programs, offered a quarter-long program entitled Understanding and Resisting Violence. The program focused on violence ranging from relationship violence on campus, police and community violence, racial and religious violence, conflict over natural resources, to war and other forms of international violence. A central goal of these discussions was to not only understand violence but to develop personal and political resources and practices to resist violence in its many forms. The sessions were open to the public, offered a companion course for undergraduates, and were attended by an average of thirty persons over the ten topics presented.

Through the support of a Bringing Theory to Practice grant, the 2016 program was expanded for 2017 to pilot curriculum development and community-involvement programs. Companion workshops were created for administrators, chairs of academic departments and programs, and faculty to accompany the public sessions on violence which were offered during the fall 2017 quarter. Each session consisted of two parts: a public formal presentation/performance followed by a private discussion among campus leaders as to how this information and insights can be integrated into curriculum and other related campus activities. Following the last program in November, University administrators, faculty, and staff took part in a half day capstone retreat to explore how understanding and resisting violence can be integrated into the core curriculum, individual courses, and co-curricular academic and community service programs.