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The Moral Imagination


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Table of Contents

1. On Stating the Problem and Thesis ; 2. On Touching the Moral Imagination: Four Stories ; 3. On This Moment: Turning Points ; 4. On Simplicity and Complexity: Finding the Essence of Peacebuilding ; 5. On Peace Accords: Image of a Line in Time ; 6. On the Gift of Pessimism: Insights from the Geographies of Violence ; 7. On Aesthetuics: The Art of Social Change ; 8. On Space: Life in the Web ; 9. On Mass and Movement: The Theory of the Critical Yeast ; 10. On Web Watching: Finding the Soul of Place ; 11. On Serendipity: The Gift of Accidental Sagacity ; 12. On Time: The Past That Lies before Us ; 13. On Pied Pipers: Imagination and Creativity ; 14. On Vocation: The Mystery of Risk ; 15. On Conclusions: The Imperative of the Moral Imagination

About the Author

John Paul Lederach is one of the world's foremost experts on peacebuilding and reconciliation. He is Professor of International Peacebuilding at the Joan B. Kroc Institute of International Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame and Distinguished Scholar at Eastern Mennonite University's Conflict Transformation Program. Among his many books are The Journey Toward Reconciliation (1999) and Building Peace: Sustainable Reconciliation in Divided Societies (1997).


Today the telecommunications and transport revolution has made the world a smaller place offering both an opportunity and challenge to the major leading countries to come together to shape the world, overcome violence and create a peaceful global community. John Paul Lederach presents a powerful case for the use of the moral imagination in rising to this challenge, thus creating authentic new possibilities. This book provides a valuable contribution to peacebuilding literature and I welcome it wholeheartedly. * John Hume, Winner of the Nobel Prize for Peace *
This is a wonderful book it resonated, provoked and exhilarated me, challenging me to think very carefully and deeply about why peace builders do what they do. It also offers some profound compass points for direction which may help to keep many of us sane and focused in the midst of the chaos and violence that so often makes up our world. * Mari Fitzduff, Brandeis University *
The Moral Imagination is an eloquent and personal meditation on the challenge of peacebuilding by one of the fields most insightful theorists and practitioners. Professor Lederach correctly observes that the years following the tragedy of September 11, 2001, represent a precious opportunity to address underlying cycles of violence and insecurity, locally and globally. It will take courage and creativity, but it is an opportunity we must not let pass us by. * Jimmy Carter, Chairman, The Carter Center *
Much exists in the conflict resolution literature about method and technique, little about art and soul. John Paul Lederach, a theorist of great insight who also happens to be a practitioner of high skill, brings us deep into his own process of learning and the results are marvelous. He offers us a rich fare of insights, stories and metaphors that captivate the moral imagination this world so badly needs. Consider this book a precious treat! * William Ury, co-author of Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement without Giving In and author of The Third Side: Why We Fight and How We Can Stop *
In its depth of wisdom regarding the dynamics of soul, spirit and society that lead good people to become effective practitioners of conflict transformation in war zones, The Moral Imagination could serve as the magnificent capstone to a life's work. The thrilling fact, however, is that Lederach stands not at the end but at the midpoint of a remarkable journey of conciliation, peacebuilding and ethical reflection. This book is a milestone in that journey; there is nothing quite like it in the literature of social change, peace and conflict studies, theology, ethics, and spiritualit? * for it weaves those disciplines together into a seamless, riveting whole. *

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