There are three discussion guides for Speaking Their Peace, each designed for a particular audience:
What they have in common is the goal of helping readers enjoy lively discussions, explore key themes and ideas in the book, and discover connections between the political and the personal, the individual and the universal, and the lives of interviewees' and reader's own lives.
This guided is appropriate for use in college-level courses in which issues relating to conflict and peacebuilding arise. The questions in the guide are designed to encourage reflection about causes of conflict and ways to build effective bridges from conflict to peace. The questions are divided into ten sections: the first section asks about the book as a whole; each of the following eight sections focuses on one of the interview chapters; and the final section presents some concluding questions.
This guide is designed to help your book club to get to the heart of Speaking Their Peace by letting you identify and explore some of its key themes, share ideas and emotions it triggered when you read it, and discover new angles and topics for discussion. The guide is divided into two sections: one asks about the book as a whole; the other focuses in turn on each of the eight interview chapters. How you use the guide is up to you. You can work your way through all the questions in order, or move around from one topic or chapter to another. However you use it, we hope it will make your conversation richer and more rewarding.
This guide is designed to help educators introduce their students to the concept and practice of rule of law, which lies at the heart of Speaking Their Peace. This guide describes three classroom activities students can undertake, presents links to a variety of online articles and videos, and includes optional worksheets and charts. It also references the Common Core Standards relevant to each activity.
For more teacher resources, visit USIP's work on Public Education.
Report: Speaking Their Peace: A Practitioner's Perspective, by Vivienne O' Connor
About This Report
We, as peacebuilding policymakers, practitioners, and academics, know a lot about the dynamics of contemporary conflicts. But what do we really know about the ordinary people in those conflict-affected states? How often are they truly given a voice? Drawing on Speaking Their Peace: Personal Stories from the Frontlines of War and Peace, this report synthesizes the reflections of the diverse range of people interviewed for the book. They come from different countries, religions, cultures, walks of life, and sides of a conflict, but they share strong feelings and opinions about their exclusion from the peace making process, about the difficulties of coping with personal trauma and societal change, and about the role of the international community in postconflict peacebuilding.
About the Author
Vivienne O’Connor is a rule of law consultant, trainer, and academic. She was a Senior Rule of Law Advisor at the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) from 2007 until 2016.