Students passionate about mending our world develop the tools they need to do so in our interdisciplinary peace and justice program.

Peace and Justice Course Offerings

PEAC 200 Introduction to Peace and Justice
Peace and Justice is an interdisciplinary field of study that includes courses from a wide variety of academic areas. The first course clarifies the meaning of peace and justice and the relationship between them. The course also introduces the Catholic Church’s tradition of social teaching on peace and justice. The major part of the course introduces students to the history of the idea of nonviolence; it also includes an introduction to great peacemakers who have contributed to justice and peace in each of the three major topic areas in the minor: economics and environmental justice, human rights and responsibilities, conflict and peace. Guest speakers will be a regular part of the course, reflecting the interdisciplinary nature of the minor.

PEAC 266 Human Dignity and Responsibility
This course will seek to establish a multi-disciplinary, interfaith rationale for human dignity while highlighting the contribution of the Catholic intellectual tradition. It will then examine the rhetoric and dynamic of genocide, exploring the way forward with realistic strategies that emphasize human connectedness and responsibility.

PEAC 333 / ELI 333 Christian Ethics: Theology and Society – GS 1 (upper)
The course addresses the enduring problem of the relationship between Christian faith and moral questions. It does so in the light of the convictions of a Catholic Christian faith community tradition. It seeks to determine the faith responses to contemporary social ethical issues. The social issues studied will vary. Religious studies majors/minors taking course for major/minor should sign up for RELS 433.

PEAC 340 / HIST 340 Israel/Palestine: The Roots of the Arab-Israeli Conflict
This course examines the origins and development of Jewish-Arab rivalry in the Middle East, beginning with the advent of Zionism in the 19th century and concluding with a review of current events. Social and economic dimensions of the conflict are considered alongside the political history and students are introduced to a wide range of materials on the topic. Alternate years.

PEAC 418 / GENS 418 International Inequalities – GS 12 / GS 11
This course focuses on social inequalities occurring outside the U.S. The three case studies which are explored are the Rwandan genocide of 1994, female circumcision in Africa and the Armenian genocide of 1915. Since we are looking at two genocides, we will conclude our studies with explorations of strategies for preventing genocide and for moving forward in their profoundly traumatic wake. Finally, to bring things a bit closer to home, this course will create opportunities for students to briefly consider Western as well as indigenous responses to each case study investigated.

PEAC 363 / IDIS 363 Poverty and Social Justice – GS 11
Designed for the general student, this course provides an introduction to the multifaceted and complex phenomenon of poverty and exploration of its relationship to social justice. Topics addressed include definitions of poverty and justice, the roots of poverty, its historical manifestations and structural influences, how it may be measured, and ways that it may be alleviated. Poverty is pervasive, affecting the human population on every continent and in every country throughout history. We ask why this is so and what we ought to do about it. Students investigate past approaches, assess their effectiveness and consider future options for reducing, and hopefully eliminating, poverty in the Third Millennium.

PEAC 400 Capstone in Peace and Justice
PEAC 400 is the capstone course for the peace and justice minor at St. Norbert College. In this course, students will be invited to deepen their knowledge of the three components of the minor (economic and environmental justice, human rights and responsibilities, and conflict and peace) and their inter-relations through in-depth research, reading of peace and justice literature, and discussion. Through class discussion and written work students will be challenged to integrate the knowledge they have accumulated through this course and the previous peace and justice, field and service work that they have done while at St. Norbert College.

Alumna Perspective

“When I was a student at SNC, I discerned a deep passion for issues surrounding social justice and international development. To ground this passion, I wanted to find an area of study in which I could gain practical knowledge. Because my interests spanned economics, psychology, religion, gender studies, business and philosophy, I did not feel satisfied choosing a single discipline. Peace and justice was an ideal fit, as it required enrollment in courses across several disciplines. Looking back now, some of these classes have been foundational for the work I have since pursued.”

Rachelle Barina ’09
Doctoral student in health care ethics