Prepare for your role as a global citizen and leader by developing knowledge and strategies that promote a more peaceful and just world.

The interdisciplinary Peace and Justice Minor prepares Hope College students to become global citizens, servants and leaders by equipping them with the knowledge, skills and experience to build a more just and peaceful world.

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The Peace & Justice Minor is:

Oriented Toward Peace
In the context of the historic Christian faith, Jesus is the prince of peace. This notion of peace rejects the kind of peace achieved through violence and sets up peaceful means as the only pathway to peaceful outcomes. As the famous peace activist and Hope College graduate, A.J. Muste, is known for saying: “There is no way to peace; peace is the way.” In the growing field of peace studies, this is known as positive peace — the creative presence of what Martin Luther King, Jr. called the beloved community. Although violence is often easier to imagine than peace, the discipline of peace studies develops complex understandings and effective strategies for resolving and transforming conflict and moving societies toward more just and sustainable peace.
Rooted in the Pursuit of Justice
The pursuit of justice begins with the recognition that human relationships are structured by systems of violence, oppression and marginalization — in short, that the world is not as it should be. In light of this, the pursuit of justice asks questions like: How should the world be? And what are the steps necessary for achieving visions of a better world? The Peace & Justice Minor prepares students to advance the work of justice in the world. This preparation begins within an interdisciplinary framework for defining and understanding what justice is and what the pursuit of justice looks like in overlapping political, economic, religious and racial terms. Students then apply this framework to the task of recognizing and explaining the roots of multiple and overlapping systems of injustice on a global level. This equips peace and justice minors to live lives of leadership and service by doing the work of creating a more just world.
The biggest human questions and problems (like the pursuit of peace and justice) transcend academic disciplines and the boundaries of traditional branches of human knowledge. This means that the pursuit of peace and justice requires an interdisciplinary approach. As an interdisciplinary program within the liberal arts, the Peace & Justice Minor introduces the study of peace and justice from multiple perspectives, including religious, historical, political, psychological, environmental, sociological, cultural and economic approaches to understanding the causes of conflict and the roots of injustice in the world, as well as various processes for achieving a just peace. Beyond introducing multiple disciplinary perspectives on questions of peace and justice, the peace and justice minor strives to engage in rich interdisciplinary studies of complex social problems. This approach recognizes that solving the biggest problems in the world requires thinking and acting between and across disciplines to face the complexities of real work and real life.
In an increasingly globalized world, the pursuit of peace and justice transcends national boundaries. The Peace and Justice Minor prepares students to understand multiple and overlapping causes of conflict in the world in global terms and equips them to think and act globally in a way that has local implications. Studying peace, conflict and justice globally has the potential to radically change how you see and interpret the world. And this radical reorientation also means that your world closer to home becomes less familiar than it once was, opening up new opportunities for seeing the familiar with new eyes and within a global perspective

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