Comprehensive Peace Education: Educating for Global Responsibility (e-book versions)

2021 Edition

E-book versions

(includes pdf, epub, mobi & azw files)

(Purchase print edition here)

Virtual Book Club!

In March 2022, the International Institute on Peace Education and Global Campaign for Peace Education will hold a weekly online book club with the participation of Betty Reardon (and special guests) to discuss the 2021 Edition of Comprehensive Peace Education.  This special book club fundraiser is limited to 20 participants. Learn more and register here!

Author: Betty A. Reardon

Betty A. Reardon’s groundbreaking work, originally authored in 1988, provides one of the first and clearest articulations of the field of peace education in theory and practice. Through reflection on her own experiences, Reardon assesses the state of peace education and offers a new comprehensive approach. She addresses the need to help educators and citizens alike understand what peace education is, why it is needed, and how it is and should be pursued.  She investigates the root causes of the violent conditions facing society so that we can better understand how education can be used to interrupt the cycles of violence and create the conditions for sustainable peace and justice. Comprehensive peace education, for the author, takes place at every level, and in every subject area, of both formal and non-formal education. In this special 2021 Edition, Reardon provides a new, reflective introduction on the emerging needs and challenges to the field for the 21st century.  Formal and non-formal educators, theorists, students, and activists will find practical and transformative wisdom immediately applicable to diverse conditions and contexts in Comprehensive Peace Education.

Praise for Comprehensive Peace Education – 2021 Edition

“Comprehensive Peace Education is rightly probably the most influential peace education work ever written. It is the astonishingly far-sighted approach, essentially still relevant today, to perceive different forms of violence not as separate phenomena but as a syndrome that ultimately threatens human life as a whole. The author contrasts this with political-economic, ecological, and gender sensitive alternatives that provide useful impulses for today’s educational debates.” – Professor (ret.) Dr. Werner Wintersteiner, Klagenfurt University, Austria

“Over twenty years ago, when I read Comprehensive Peace Education by my professor and mentor Dr. Betty Reardon, this nation was on the verge of illegal invasions into Iraq and Afghanistan, started by George W. Bush and accepted by the majority in the U.S. government, including our current president Joe Biden. Betty Reardon’s work addressed urgent questions about structural violence, gender, and war. CPE is an important introduction to understanding the obstacles for peace and the emergence of peace education to support the necessary transformations of human values and priorities. Betty’s work reminds and still inspires us in the understanding that peace education is a necessary pursuit, on the road to moving hearts and minds toward peace and way from the racist white supremacist patriarchal and heteronormative behaviors and systems that are the primary root causes of war.“ – Dr. David Ragland, Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director for Reparations at the Truth Telling Project of Ferguson

“The reissuing of Comprehensive Peace Education occurs at a perilous moment in human history. Reardon’s timeless and compelling presentation of peace education concepts and pedagogy reminds us of the essential role that educators can play in cultivating the consciousness, courage, and capacities of future peacemakers and activists. – Felisa Tibbitts, Chair in Human Rights Education, Utrecht University, The Netherlands and UNESCO Chair in Human Rights and Higher Education

“Comprehensive Peace Education has been a core text for peace educators worldwide for decades. This new edition offers fresh perspectives and insights from Betty Reardon on her classic text that explains the field’s core concepts such as peacemaking capacities, education for negative and positive peace, and–more important than ever–planetary stewardship and global citizenship. This is a must read for all peace educators, emerging and seasoned.” – Dr. Monisha Bajaj, Professor of International & Multicultural Education, University of San Francisco

“As a peace educator and professor of future teachers, I welcome the reissuing of Betty Reardon’s seminal work Comprehensive Peace Education. In this text, Reardon makes explicit the connections between education, peace, and global responsibility in an analysis that was ahead of its time. She also provides a framework and insights into what a transformative peace education entails, in its foundations, purposes, and practice. In this third decade of the twenty-first century, we acknowledge the urgency of an approach to peace education that is holistic, critical, and action-oriented. One that provides for understanding of the obstacles to peace in the many forms of violence, as well as ways to address these toward the recognition of human dignity, the survival of the planet, and humanization amidst crisis. Reardon’s book provides a personal and historical foundation of the field which is a relevant contribution to present perils. Her re-thinking of peace education, as provided in the 2021 introduction to this book, provides eye-opening insight to those of us committed to educating for peace that engages current realities and proposes new ways of thinking in this field.” – Anita Yudkin Suliveres, Ph.D., Professor / Coordinator, UNESCO Chair for Peace Education, Dept. of Educational Foundations, School of Education, University of Puerto Rico

“In this new edition, Reardon again invites the reader to contribute in reviewing changing conditions for comprehensive peace education. Her own work stands as a classic for how to ground peace education in analysis and visions of developments at levels ranging from the global to the local. This complexity of our common reality and future is a topic of utmost importance to teachers, students and citizens and can only be met with a comprehensive approach in which fearless and reasoned dialogues of differences are also part of the toolbox of methods discussed.” – Magnus Haavelsrud, Professor Emeritus, Faculty of Social and Educational Sciences, Norwegian University of Science and Technology

“Military means cannot solve any of our present-day challenges, nor reduce our fears. Peace education, however, may help guide us out of confrontational and competitive patterns of thinking and action and open up possibilities of dialogue, cooperation, and understanding. Read Betty Reardon’s book on comprehensive peace education for your own ability to cope with uncertainties, complexities, and the unknown, and for use in any situation of learning and interaction!” – Ingeborg Breines, Consultant & former co-president International Peace Bureau; Former Director, UNESCO

“In Comprehensive Peace Education, as in all of Betty Reardon’s writing and teaching, she ushers us through the processes of envisioning alternatives and implementing those changes by integrating peace education into everything from gender to the environment. In this revised edition, she goes further, requiring readers to reflect on our own behaviors and assumptions and include ourselves in the transformation process. As always, Reardon’s writing inspires and, regardless of the decade or context, is relevant and prescient.” – Jill Strauss, PhD, The City University of New York (CUNY)

“Reardon explains peace education as a transformative process, responsive to global issues, and continually evolving. She stresses that peace education is an inquiry into the How and Why of our world, and not the blame of Who, sorely absent in the knee jerk, tit for tat, global politics of “dualistic, either-or thinking”. This classic work is a wise discussion of the How and Why, where Reardon shines her torch on the knowledge, the purpose, and the necessity of peace education. A brilliant teacher here explains the theory and practice of peace education brilliantly.” – Ian Gibson, Professor, Dept. of English and American Studies, Kyoto University of Foreign Studies, Kyoto, Japan

About the Author

Betty A. Reardon is acknowledged around the world as one of the founders of the field of peace education. She has been extensively involved in the international peace education movement and has been published widely in the field.  She is a co-founder of both the International Institute on Peace Education and the Global Campaign for Peace Education.

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