WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT
About the book
Peacemaking: Family Activities for Justice and Peace consists of two volumes.
Vol. 1, Facing Challenges and Embracing Opportunities in the 21st Century, integrates theory and practical advice for families, educators, and community leaders.
Vol. 2, Examining Values, Developing Skills, and Acting for Peace in the Family, the Community, and the World, offers a variety of family activities: some light and lively and some that encourage deeper reflection. All of the activities can be adapted for all age groups.
FROM THE FORWARD TO THE BOOK, by Patricia Mische, Ph.D.
It is a privilege to write the Foreword to the 30th anniversary edition of Peacemaking: Family Activities for Justice and Peace by Jacqueline Haessly. In the almost four decades that I have known Jackie and her pioneering work in educating and parenting for peace and justice, she has demonstrated not only an ever deepening understanding of peace and justice theory, but also an enduring commitment to “walk the talk.” She and her partner Dan Di Domizio dedicated their marriage to the values in this book. The practices recommended here are not pulled from the air, but were tested and honed by Jackie and Dan over many years of parenting five children. This book is a testimony to the vision, commitment, and integration of reflection and action for peace and justice they have mastered over their lifetime.
Because of this grounding, and her willingness to share from personal experience, Jackie’s writing has an authenticity, intimacy, and accessibility often lacking in theoretical or scholarly works where “detachment” is de rigueur. Yet this work is no less scholarly; it builds on decades of research and scholarship in the field of peace studies, but here the theory and scholarship are infused without clouding readability or practicality.
When this work was first published thirty years ago it was a major contribution to the field of peace and justice work and it remains so today. Then, and now, only a few peace scholars and practitioners focused on the role of the family in peace building. Yet, as Jackie so eloquently underscores,
Each family holds within its fold the single most important
and powerful force known to humanity, the potential
to shape for its members those attitudes and values
essential to the very survival of all life on the planet.
As Jackie points out in her introduction, families can and do play a significant role in educating their young for violence or peace. The first experiences of abuse, conflict, competition, fear, injustice, hatred, and bigotry too often occur in families. Thus, it is in families that the most profound difference may be made in advancing a culture of peace. As Jackie notes:
Families can also create a space where each member
is affirmed, loved, and treasured;
where each one learns to love and trust others;
respect differences; cooperate at work and play;
resolve conflicts in effective, nonviolent, and peaceful ways;
and treat each other and the planet with care and justice.
But to do this requires awareness, intentionality, commitment, and skill on the part of parents. Jackie sets out in this book to offer parents inspiration, guideposts, practices, and skills for moving forward, including in the areas of self awareness and affirmation, cooperation, problem-solving, creative conflict resolution, global solidarity, images of alternative futures, celebration, and prayer. Her sample family prayer services include multi-faith perspectives designed that model appreciation, and inclusivity of diverse traditions. A bibliography and list of recommended resources offer suggestions for further learning.
This 30-year anniversary edition could not come at a better time. The world has experienced many changes for good in the past three decades, including an end to the Cold War, the fall of the Berlin wall, and greater East-West accord, demonstrating that peace is possible. Still, a pathology of violence continues to undermine human existence. This pathology bubbles up in some old and also new forms, from religious enmities, child abuse, the trafficking of women, and virtual slavery, to terrorist warfare, ecological devastation and related refugee flows, economic crises, joblessness, homelessness, hunger, poverty, and more.
This book makes an important contribution to finding ways at the most basic level of the family to transform these forms of violence and create cultures of peace and justice. It is my profound hope that it will have not only a wide readership, but that parents will put the ideas in this book into their daily practice.
Patricia (Pat) Mische, Ph.D. Former Lloyd Professor of Peace Studies and World Law at Antioch College; Co-founder with Jerry Mische of Global Education Associates; Co-author with Jerry Mische of Toward a Human World Order
Comments from Around the World
“As I read the pages of Jackie Haessly’s book, I wanted to “shout-out” my joy, my resonance with her words, my passion for the message she conveys, and how she calls the reader to action and reflection with a “Just me notebook”. There is not a wasted page in this book. We could post sentences and paragraphs from this text into our email signatures and social networking efforts and change the world with the wisdom expressed in Peacemaking: Family Activities for Justice and Peace. Jackie addresses tough topics such as our obsession with competition; our acceptance and willingness to embrace put-downs; our difficulty affirming ourselves and others; and much more. Today, this book is relevant and needed desperately. Read, reflect, grow, and raise peaceful and emotionally healthy families.”
Susan Gingras Fitzell, M. Ed., USA; Author: Free the Children: Conflict Education for Strong, Peaceful Minds
“I loved it! I want to review it for “Weaving the World”, and for an interview for the show. This book reminds all of us of the value of family. A family unit comes in many forms in today’s society and yet it is still the basic component of building culture. Family is the primary factor in creating a culture of peace.”
Sharon Riegie Maynard, USA – Women, Educator, Host of Weaving the World Radio Show
“Jacqueline Haessly teaches us how to recognize our own basic goodness, and recognize the beauty in those we know, those we have yet to meet, and strangers. We can learn to affirm and trust others rather than judge, blame, or attack them. Jacqueline’s thoughtful, clear book provides great insights, illuminating a path we can all take as peacemakers in our world.”
Priscilla Warner, USA – Co-author: NYT bestseller The Faith Club
“I am inspired by the wisdom contained in Jacqueline Haessly’s book. The measures she proposes are accessible (available to all); practical (in implementation), durable (will stand the test of time) and universal (relevant everywhere). I recommend translation into other languages.”
Ian Kelly, Australia – Coordinator, Educators Network, International Institute for Peace through Tourism – Co-Editor: Tourism, Progress, and Peace
“I am very impressed by this newest edition of Peacemaking: Family Activities for Justice and Peace, and congratulate Jacqueline, an international researcher of peace culture, for its wealth of peace culture values and its great importance. This new edition is a treasure that should be used and practiced in every family, in education, and in the mass media of our global village. If television, radio and newspaper reporters could be guided by the values in this unique book instead of by the culture of violence we are often fed with our news, the world would be a much safer, more joyful and worthier place to live in, for all of us. I highly recommend this worthy and superb book!”
Prof. Ada Aharoni, Israel – Founder and World President of IFLAC – The International Forum For Literature And Culture Of Peace
“In this remarkably hopeful and honest book, Jacqueline Haessly clearly unpacks how the values, vision, and activities of peacemaking can build strong families of birth and intimacy as well as create peacefulness in local and global villages. The 30th Anniversary Edition of Peacemaking: Family Activities for Justice and Peace includes insights from sociology, psychology, philosophy, and theology, as well as inspiring personal stories drawn from her years of raising a diverse and challenging family. Families of all faiths who read this book will discover values, vision, and actions for peacemaking.”
Robert A. Pavlik, Ph.D., USA – Assistant Director: Institute for the Transformation of Learning, Manager: Community Transformation Project – Marquette University
“This book is super! This thoughtful, reflecting inquiry into
peacemaking asks and answers the crucial questions about human relations in families and in community settings, and offers opportunity to explore values and nurture skills and attitudes to renew societies in order to preserve peace. I believe the book offers readers not only a journey into peacemaking but also for peacemaking in our global village.”
Zulfiya Tursunova-Uzbeksitan – Educator and Peace and Conflict Resolution Scholar, The University of Manitoba
“In this book, Jacqueline Haessly, a mother and educator
dedicated to peace and interfaith harmonic relations in society, writes “This book is a compilation of thoughts and ideas that have grown out of concern for how we create an atmosphere where peacemaking attitudes and values can be nurtured, and peacemaking skills can be developed . . .”. Peacemaking: Family Activities for Justice and Peace is an important guide for the preparation of such an atmosphere and for the development of comprehensive peacemaking attitudes both at home and in the community, including “respect for differences, cooperation, and the peaceful resolution of conflicts”. Jacqueline Haessly’s text also makes an important contribution to peace, demonstrating that to reach it, is not only a social need and responsibility, but also an individual and familiar activity and mission. Her approach concerning violence in the language of children is remarkable. I strongly recommend this book to be studied in universities and schools and, for parents, educators, sociologists, and every woman and man.”
Prof. Dr. Ernesto Kahan, MD. MPH, Israel University Professor; Poet; Physician; Tel Aviv University, Israel. Bar Ilan University, Israel – President: Israeli Association Writers. Spanish Branch – Vice President: World Academy of Arts and Culture USA – Former Vice President and recipient of Nobel Peace Prize: – International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War and – President: The Israeli Branch of IPPNW – Honorary President: International Society of Poets Writers and Artists – Vice President: Intl Forum for Literature and Culture of Peace – Executive President: Union HispanoAmerican Writers – Vice President: Global Harmony Association
“I applaud the creative and humanizing relevance of this book. May it be translated into many languages, so that more families will be educated as peacemaking agents for our world.”
Francisco Gomes de Matos, Brazil Peace Linguist and Poet, Professor Emeritus: Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Co-founder: Associação Brasil América, Recife, Brazil, Co-founder: Dom Helder Camara Human Rights Commission, UFPE, Recife, Brazil
“Jacqueline Haessly’s book from 30 years ago, Peacemaking: Family Activities for Justice and Peace, was a remarkable attempt in its day to show the role of family in creating and building up the attitudes and skills needed to live in a peace-filled society. She has now updated the original to include an awareness of the changes in the world in these last three decades, especially emphasizing the rise and effects of globalization. As people of one culture now rub shoulders daily with those of another with totally different values and history, her book becomes more valuable and more pertinent. She applies the same attitudes and skills of Peacemaking now to this new kaleidoscope of intersecting cultures with the same calm, wise voice that characterized the first edition of thirty years ago.”
Rembert G. Weakland, OSB, USA , Retired Archbishop of Milwaukee, WI
“Jackie, Thank you for sharing your beautiful book on transformative activities for peace. I hope you feel my gratitude and reverence. Enormous congratulations on the super-contribution to mindful peacemaking your work represents in these times. You bring a clear strong voice to this important topic, and at the same time offer an out-stretched hand to a needy, searching audience at the very heart of personal and planetary transformation; the family. My soul-graced thanks to you! Your book offers hope to a broad audience as it ‘speaks’ unexpectedly to the untouched heart, the stirs our sometimes unfelt need for nurturing, sanity, calm, and interconnectedness.”
Stuart Porteous, Australia, Landscape Architectural Industrial and Graphic Design
“Jacqueline’s greatly expanded and revised latest edition of her book, originally written for a specifically Christian audience, now serves as a guide for all families who seek to incorporate peacemaking values, knowledge, actions, and skill into their everyday family life. I am proud to identify with it. In many African societies elders sit around a fire and pass on important virtues to their children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. There is a general feeling that a family is a social memory lane, one where families trace the specific generations’ virtues of a particular lineage beyond memory recall. Our great grand children can learn to be peacemakers if our family passes on these roles to each new family generation.”
Maxie J. Muwonge, Uganda, Peace and Human Security Researcher
“I have enjoyed and profited from my experience working with Jacqueline as a peace educator in Milwaukee over the last 19 years. When I met Jacqueline I was impressed with her knowledge and commitment and I eagerly anticipated reading her works and engaging her in conferences for building non-violence awareness and peacemaking coalitions in Milwaukee.”
When I first read her earlier edition of Peacemaking: Family Activities For Justice And Peace, I placed it on our resource list for our city and statewide Safe Night anti-violence program (co-ordinated through the City of Milwaukee Health Department, beginning in 1994). Her book was a perfect fit for community organizers looking for ways to engage families and community groups in meaningful dialogue about conflict resolution, and in encouraging peace leadership. Our faith organizers found the spirituality addressed as particularly useful for focusing their discussions with youth and families.
In much the same way this latest edition of Peacemaking: Family Activities For Justice And Peace provides sustenance as families engage in reflective thought and activities about peacemaking. Her progression of the use of affirmation, diversity, conflict resolution, and global involvement stretch the users of her book to think about their lives patiently and deeply. Readers are challenged and encouraged to think about their impact on society and the world more than to debate who or what is right or wrong. Each is encouraged to explore, through a series of journaling responses to probing questions, how our lives affect others when we make decision.
I recommend Jacqueline’s excellent book as a personal testament of a lifelong peace educator who has the practical experience working with community groups and families and the deep understanding of our societal network in a manner that brings the relevancy of peace education. Hopefully, this latest edition will continue to inspire educators, social workers, and families seeking to end violence and promote peace in their families and their communities.”
Olusegun Sijuwade, USA, Nonviolence & Sexual Assault Prevention Educator
But peace does not rest in the charters and covenants alone.
It lies in the hearts and minds of all people.
So let us not rest all our hopes on parchment and on paper,
let us strive to build peace, a desire for peace,
a willingness to work for peace
in the hearts and minds of all people.
I believe we can.
Spreading a message of peace to inspire families to create a better world for themselves and future generations was planted in Jackie’s heart, mind, and spirit more than thirty years ago and is exemplified within her own family and her interactions with others. From the birth of its humble beginnings in the 80’s, this book has grown to reflect the changing times, concerns, and needs of today’s families. It guides, demonstrates, and reinforces the diverse themes of peace, how peace can be achieved and sustained, and how peace can create stronger families and communities in today’s ever-changing world.
In developing this book of activities for families, it is clear that Jackie passionately believes that peace is more than merely words expressed on paper. Within families, real peace requires each family member to face, understand, and challenge their personal beliefs, actions, attitudes, biases, and worldviews about what it means to truly be at peace; how to engage in peaceful interactions while in the midst of facing and overcoming trials and tribulations; and how to nurture and cultivate peace. In addition, developing a sense, spirit, or attitude of peace within families requires intentionality, thoughtfulness, compassion, honesty, trust, empathy, love, dedication, reflection, belief, diligence, forgiveness, fortitude, and determination. These topics and more are addressed within Peacemaking: Family Activities for Justice and Peace.”
Patricia A. Ellis, Ed.D., USA, Project Director: Institute for the Transformation of Learning, Marquette University
“Jacqueline’s seminal book, Peacemaking: Family Activities for Justice and Peace, is a modern, yet timeless contribution to the all too scarce body of literature on families and peacemaking. Each thematic chapter includes both theoretical material and queries for families to consider as they undertake their important work: laying a foundation for a peaceful world. The reader is gently guided into experiential activities for self-reflection and action throughout. The book is thorough, with clear ideas based both in the philosophical underpinnings of nonviolence and in the practical skills for the hard task of making peace. The challenge is to empower families to build the world we wish for our children, grandchildren, and future generations. Reading this work inspires hope that we really can get there. Jacqueline makes clear, and I agree, that families are the first and most important educators for their children.
Jacqueline explores the various concepts of peace, helping us to realize that peace is more than merely the absence of violence. Conflicts within our families and conflicts in the world share similar root causes. Peace occurs when we examine root causes and address structural issues that result in the gap between the wealthy and the impoverished, a lack of access to resources for many of the world’s people, overconsumption of scarce resources, and when we vision a better future for all.
This book is written primarily from a faith-based perspective. Though Jacqueline Haessly herself comes from a Christian tradition, there are activities outlined, including family prayer services, for people of many different faith traditions. The Forward by Patricia Mische reminds us, as does this work, that optimal peacebuilding involves both reflection and action. An enhanced spirituality, nurtured and supported by a strong family, can be key to building a strong foundation among our children for the world to come, one in which deep challenges must be faced to sustain our world.”
Mary Lee Morrison, USA – President, Founding Director, Pax Educare, the CT Center for Peace Education; Author: Elise Boulding: A Life in the Cause of Peace; Co-author with Ian Harris: Peace Education.