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One World, Many Peaces
Explore the full spectrum of peace and peacemaking from prehistoric to contemporary times in the first single volume aimed at improving their prospects.
How peace has been made and maintained, experienced and imagined is not only a matter of historical interest, but also of pressing concern. Peace: A World History is the first study to explore the full spectrum of peace and peacemaking from prehistoric to contemporary times in a single volume aimed at improving their prospects.
By focusing on key periods, events, people, ideas and texts, Antony Adolf shows how the inspiring possibilities and pragmatic limits of peace and peacemaking were shaped by their cultural contexts and, in turn, shaped local and global histories. Diplomatic, pacifist, legal, transformative non-violent and anti-war movements are just a few prominent examples.
Proposed and performed in socio-economic, political, religious, philosophical and other ways, Adolf's presentation of the diversity of peace and peacemaking challenges the notions that peace is solely the absence of war, that this negation is the only task of peacemakers, and that history is exclusively written by military victors. "Without the victories of peacemakers and the resourcefulness of the peaceful," he contends, "there would be no history to write."
This book is essential reading for students, scholars, policy-shapers, activists and general readers involved with how present forms of peace and peacemaking have been influenced by those of the past, and how future forms can benefit by taking these into account.
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By Monty G. Marshall, Center for Systemic Peace
"A naive peace is inevitably the peace of the grave. A rational peace begins when we learn collectively how to live well within the limits of our circumstances; it is the peace of preservation and renewal. Adolf's Peace: A World History shifts the focus of history from the necessities of war to the imperatives of peace and, in doing so, provides invaluable insights for comprehending the dynamic principles of future peaces."
By Michael Clinton, Gwynedd-Mercy College
In Peace: A World History, Antony Adolf admirably demonstrates that peacemaking has not been a peripheral pursuit in human history, not an aberration in the narrative of human society, despite humanity's poor record in achieving peace. Adolf's work ably synthesizes the growing literature in peace history while offering its own interpretive contribution. It offers a viable alternative reading of history away from that which sets peacemakers to the margins as utopians, quacks, traitors, etc. and instead locates peacemaking as a concept at the heart of the ideas and events that have shaped the world.
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