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TitleA College-Level Discussion Guide to "Speaking Their Peace: Personal Stories from the Frontlines
LanguageEnglish
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                            College of William & Mary Law School
William & Mary Law School Scholarship Repository
	2015
A College-Level Discussion Guide to "Speaking Their Peace: Personal Stories from the Frontlines of War and Peace" by Colette Rausch
	Christie S. Warren
	Meghan Phillips
	Abby Riley
		Repository Citation
tmp.1432739808.pdf.c8wjH
                        
Document Text Contents
Page 1

College of William & Mary Law School
William & Mary Law School Scholarship Repository

Faculty Publications Faculty and Deans

2015

A College-Level Discussion Guide to "Speaking
Their Peace: Personal Stories from the Frontlines of
War and Peace" by Colette Rausch
Christie S. Warren
William & Mary Law School, [email protected]

Meghan Phillips

Abby Riley

Copyright c 2015 by the authors. This article is brought to you by the William & Mary Law School Scholarship Repository.
https://scholarship.law.wm.edu/facpubs

Repository Citation
Warren, Christie S.; Phillips, Meghan; and Riley, Abby, "A College-Level Discussion Guide to "Speaking Their Peace: Personal Stories
from the Frontlines of War and Peace" by Colette Rausch" (2015). Faculty Publications. 1744.
https://scholarship.law.wm.edu/facpubs/1744

https://scholarship.law.wm.edu
https://scholarship.law.wm.edu/facpubs
https://scholarship.law.wm.edu/faculty
https://scholarship.law.wm.edu/facpubs

Page 2

Prepared by Professor Christie S. Warren
with Meghan Phillips and Abby Riley,

William and Mary Law School

A COLLEGE-LEVEL DISCUSSION GUIDE TO

Page 12

A College-level DisCussion guiDe to Colette RAusCh’s Speaking Their peace 11

• How can governmental actors and other groups encourage more accountabil-
ity by international powers?

2. Is aid donated by international actors a form of political or cultural imperialism, as
Shrish Rana (pages 149–151) believes? He criticizes the political role that NGOs
and INGOs play in Nepal. He is also critical of Western-style democracy, which he
says comes at the expense of nationalism and sovereignty of the people.

• If international actors donate large amounts of money to assist with postcon-
flict efforts, should they be allowed to control the reconstruction agenda?

• Is democracy the best model for every country? Does your answer depend on
whether traditional democratic models are part of national traditions?

3. Joko Moses Kuyon (pages 154–156) thinks that the label “democracy” is just a
shield for imperialist actions. He resents the imposition of a Western human rights
culture on the people of Liberia, not because he is against the rights themselves,
but because the Western human rights paradigm shows a lack of understanding
and respect for Liberian culture and traditions. Kuyon cites an example of Western
aid workers telling Liberians not to accept a job without being paid up front, al-
though traditional Liberian practice is to pay after the work is completed because
employers often do not have money up front. The result of this clash, he claims,
is a breakdown of the Liberian economic system. Employers cannot afford to hire
anyone, leaving potential workers without work.

• What is the solution to culture clashes such as this one?

• Do you think it is right for international actors to use postconflict reconstruc-
tion activities as an opportunity to change cultural practices?

4. “The women’s rights, child rights, all these rights [the international community is]
bringing, they are foreign to us,” Joko Moses Kuyon says (page 155).

• Is there room for universal rights and traditional practices to coexist?

• As a peacekeeper, how would you address clashes between universal rights
and local customary practices?

• Should communities themselves be allowed to decide what rights and values
they wish to adopt?

5. The relationship between liberty and security is often described as a continuum, in
which more security results in less liberty.

• Do you think there can be peace without security?

• Can there be peace without liberty?

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A College-level DisCussion guiDe to Colette RAusCh’s Speaking Their peace 12

6. U Sit Aye (pages 143–145) seems to think that ensuring security is a necessary
first step before peace can be established, but focusing exclusively on security
undermines other development. He says, “whenever there is peace, development
follows,” and then laments that security fears, such as when insurgents control
the use of roads, can make governments reluctant to invest in infrastructure even
though it would be good for the people.

• What do you think people want most after they have suffered through long
wars?

• Should they be willing to wait for basic development to start until security and
peace have been firmly established?

7. It can take a long time to establish security and peace after protracted conflict.

• What would you want to do most if you had been confined for a long time
due to conflict—and then were suddenly free to begin your life again?

8. For Muhammed Ali (pages 220–222), security and safety are also major concerns.
He describes how tension between various tribal groups has made travel on roads
unsafe and beyond anyone’s control, and declares that the Yemeni state is nonexis-
tent.

• Is security not only fundamental to peace but also necessary for the estab-
lishment of the state? Or must a state be established before security can be
achieved?

9. Do you agree that “everything will come naturally,” as Nebojsa Popovic from Koso-
vo says (pages 157–158) after peace returns and people have jobs? Are security
and economic well-being the most important factors for peace to take root?

• If you disagree, what factors do you consider to be more important?

• Are there other things that could interfere with people returning to normal
lives, even if peace returns and people have returned to work?

10. Interviewers are very interested in asking these officials about the role of rule of
law in postconflict contexts.

• How can civilians believe in and live according to the rule of law every day,
especially if they live under corrupt government systems?

• Are there small things every person can to do build a rule of law culture?

• Would you argue that ordinary people have a duty to live according to the rule
of law even when they know their government is corrupt?

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A College-level DisCussion guiDe to Colette RAusCh’s Speaking Their peace 22

8. Will human beings ever be able to stop war and conflict?

• Is it useful to study conflicts to learn how to avoid them in the future, or is
there some other reason to study them?

9. Often groups that did not arm themselves during the conflict are excluded from
peace negotiations and therefore also future political power in their country.

• Is it fair that only armed groups should be allowed to participate in negotia-
tions and power-sharing arrangements?

• How can international actors make sure that women, youth and other un-
armed groups are included in peace processes?

10. Gregory H. Stanton of Genocide Watch writes that genocides take place in eight
stages: classification, symbolization, dehumanization, polarization, preparation, ex-
termination, and denial. Although few of the countries in this book experienced
genocide, Stanton’s eight stages can nevertheless be found in the histories of many
of the countries described as conflicts began and escalated.

• Do you think people in the countries described in this book were aware that
seemingly small events such as classification and symbolization were actually
important steps on the path to conflict and war?

• What can be done to prevent situations from devolving into violence and
genocide?

• Is there a stage when violence can be prevented?

• Are you confident that you would recognize any of the eight stages if they hap-
pened near where you live?

• Do you think people who stand by and do nothing in the face of violence
should be held accountable? Are they more or less accountable than those
who actually fought?

• Did any of the lessons in this book help you to identify emerging conflicts in
the world today or give you information that might help you prevent conflict?

11. After reading what the internationals said about their experiences, and what other
interviewees thought of the internationals:

• Do you have a better or worse opinion of international intervention in
conflict-afflicted countries?

Page 24

A College-level DisCussion guiDe to Colette RAusCh’s Speaking Their peace 23

• Do you think better or worse of the people who work for international orga-
nizations in postconflict countries?

• Are you interested in pursuing a career as an international? Why?

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