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The Moral Imagination: The Art and Soul of Building Peace [Hardcover]

John Paul Lederach
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
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Book Description

1 Jan 2005
John Paul Lederach's work in the field of conciliation and mediation is internationally recognized. As founding Director of the Conflict Transformation Program and Institute of Peacebuilding at Eastern Mennonite University, he has provided consultation and direct mediation in a range of situations from the Miskito/Sandinista conflict in Nicaragua to Somalia, Northern Ireland, the Basque Country, and the Philippines. His influential 1997 book Building Peace has become a classic in the discipline. This new book represents his thinking and learning over the past several years. He explores the evolution of his understanding of peacebuilding by reflecting on his own experiences in the field. Peacebuilding, in his view, is both a learned skill and an art. Finding this art, he says, requires a worldview shift. Conflict professionals must envision their work as a creative act - an exercise of what Lederach terms the 'moral imagination.'

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 218 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press (1 Jan 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195174542
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195174540
  • Product Dimensions: 24.1 x 16.4 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 620,195 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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"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 Gi

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).

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Akmal MizshakaroI painted the image found on the cover of this book following the tragic events unleashed in New York and Washington D.C., on September 11, 2001. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Well recommended 27 Jan 2014
By Jo
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Just what I needed for my studies -it had been recommended as a useful book. I will use it when I write my essays
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5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book! 29 Dec 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
John Paul Lederach's Moral Imagination is a fantastic read and guide on how to deal with conflict on a very human level using - that which is available to us all - morals and imagination. An excellent read for those involved in conflict resolution in any way. It also goes beyond conventional ways of dealing with conflict. The story of the two tribes and the young man speaking to the leader of the opossing tribe - 'I call you Father' really resonated with me and showed how to speak to our adversaries in a respectful moral and gentle manner. Also the story of the women in the market place shows how one very small group and gesture can change a whole countries view.... The moral imagination in brilliant!
Paula Juliet
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good introduction 20 Sep 2013
By marion
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Easy to read and to understand peace building and to bring you to think in another way. a c b
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.5 out of 5 stars  12 reviews
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Moral Imagination: The Art & Soul of Building Peace 26 May 2010
By Edward W. Mcintyre - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a metaphorically rich book about conflict resolution and preparing the essential infrastructure for dialogue. Anyone interested in resolving conflict at whatever level would benefit from the experiences Prof. Lederach shares.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gives meaning to much I have observed as a mediator 7 Sep 2010
By Douglas M. Smith - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
"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 . . . "
So said the well-known author William Ury

In The Moral Imagination I learned to look for the important web of relationships that lies hidden behind the violence of a conflict. Such webs contain spaces that may become starting places for reconciliation. Even before violence abates, in such spaces a peace-builder can get started.

A skilled and engaging storyteller, Mr. Lederach offers instances from his own experience to illustrate the theories he lays out. For example, he tells how mothers, wives, and daughters built peace in a formerly violent marketplace where all parties needed to shop for necessities.

In the arena of workplace reconciliation where I work, Mr. Lederach has helped me assign meaning to much I have observed but not always recognized as important.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 9 Oct 2011
By LadySway - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I am only half way through right now. But this book is really helping me to see the heart of conflict resolution and peace building.

I am naturally a very emotional person, but all during my undergrad I had to put on a very serious/fact finding hat to get through. Now during my graduate studies of Peace and Conflict Resolution I was having a hard time adjusting. Words like "love", "harmony", and "imagination" were really throwing me off.

I am reading this book for my class and it is really helping me to put my heart and imagination into what I am learning which is helping me to internalize what I am learning. After all, I believe that to want to resolve the conflict of others, you have to have a little love and imagination in your heart.

This book puts the heart back into peace building. It reminds us that it is ok to use your heart and intuition in your work. Everything is not always about technical methods and theories.

A hooked reader.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful! 22 July 2009
By slb - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is a wonderful book, beautiful and thoughtful. One of the best books I have read this year. The concepts here have many applications beyond peacemaking. Hopeful and helpful.
5.0 out of 5 stars Genius Book by a Brilliantand Creative Man 6 May 2014
By benmwaugh - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book boils conflict resolution down to The Moral Imagination, without simplifying the complex field. It brings art to a technical field.
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