Resources for Teachers and Students on Helen Caldicott

Prepare: Helen Caldicott, a physician, is a leading antinuclear activist who teaches pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. She maintains her own personal website, on which her biography can be found.

Read: Helen Caldicott's Architects of Peace essay is excerpted from her 1992 book, If You Love This Planet: A Plan to Heal the Earth. In it, she discusses the importance for peace of understanding the beauty of nature.

Explore: Helen Caldicott is the founder and president emeritus of an organization called Physicians for Social Responsibility, PSR, which seeks to protect human health from the threats of nuclear war and other weapons of mass destruction, as well as from global environmental degradation and the epidemic of gun violence in today's society. In 1985, PSR shared the Nobel Peace Prize with an organization called "International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War."

Write: Helen Caldicott"s Architects of Peace essay doesn't directly correlate the theme of developing an aesthetic appreciation for nature with the theme of developing a culture of peace. But is such a correlation possible? Write a two-to-three page "concept paper" where you attempt to unify these two areas of concern, either by identifying a larger area of concern into which they both fit, or by identifying points of commonality between peace concerns and aesthetic concerns for the beauty of the natural world.

Extend: Helen Caldicott is currently president of the Nuclear Policy Research Institute, NPRI, which was established to educate the American public about the public health threat involved in perpetuating nuclear weapons. The NPRI maintains an active discussion board on its website, and offers a variety of ways to become involved in its campaigns.

Additional Resource: In addition to founding Physicians for Social Responsibility, Helen Caldicott also founded an organization known as Women's Action for New Directions, WAND, which was originally called "Women's Action for Nuclear Disarmament." WAND seeks to empower women "to act politically to reduce violence and militarism, and redirect excessive military resources toward unmet human and environmental needs."

Biography of Helen Caldicott