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For Global Peace with Social Justice in a Sustainable Environment

Mary Elizabeth King
  • Female
  • Washington, DC, and Oxford, UK
  • United States
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Mary Elizabeth King is professor of peace and conflict studies at the UN-affiliated University for Peace, and distinguished scholar with the American University’s Center for Global Peace, in Washington, DC. She is a Rothermere American Institute Fellow at the University of Oxford, in Britain.

In 1988, she won a Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Book Award for her book, Freedom Song: A Personal Story of the 1960s Civil Rights Movement. In 2002, New Delhi’s Indian Council for Cultural Relations released the second edition of her book, Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr: The Power of Nonviolent Action, which chronicles nine contemporary nonviolent struggles, originally published by UNESCO in 1999. An order form can be found on her web site. In 2003 in Mumbai, she received the Jamnalal Bajaj International Prize for the promotion of Gandhian values.

Her latest work is a reference book, The New York Times on Emerging Democracies in Eastern Europe, on the nonviolent struggles of the Eastern bloc that brought about an end to Soviet control and communist order. It concerns nonviolent revolutions in ten nation-states that were occupied by the Soviet army, or controlled by totalitarian communist governments, at the close of World War II: Poland, Hungary, East Germany, and Czechoslovakia in central Europe; the Baltic States of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania; and Serbia, Georgia, and Ukraine in the Balkans and Caucasus. It was brought out by TimesReference and CQ Press in November 2009, to coincide with the twentieth anniversary of the fall of the Berlin wall. She is the author of A Quiet Revolution: The First Palestinian Intifada and Nonviolent Resistance (New York, Nation Books, 2007), still in print.

With a grant from the United States Institute of Peace, King is at work on a book project, Conversion and the Mechanisms of Change in Nonviolent Action: The 1924-25 Vykom Satyagraha Case against the Caste System. In brief, in Kerala state, India, anyone could walk the roads surrounding Vykom’s Hindu temple (Christians, Jews, Muslims, dogs, or pigs), but not lower castes. A local nonviolent struggle in Vykom was also pivotal in India's national eradication of untouchability. It ended after 603 days in November 1925. Many high-caste Brahmins became involved in the fight, yet the accepted explanation that their hearts and minds were “converted” is an idealization. This case-study research seeks to correct the record for its import in the international literature. In two trips to Kerala, Gandhi negotiated with the British police commissioner and Brahmin temple officials -- a case of conflict management, not resolution, and never properly chronicled. Nonviolent struggles are often required in order to reach the stage of negotiations.

She was awarded the 2009 El-Hibri Peace Education Prize for outstanding leadership in the practice of nonviolent action and in the field of peace education for her contributions toward social justice in the Middle East.
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Review of my book Gandhian Nonviolent Struggle and Untouchability in South India: The 1924-25 Vykom Satyagraha and the Mechanisms of Change

Posted on March 25, 2015 at 12:29pm 0 Comments

Vykom: Nonviolent Action against Untouchability

25.03.2015 - Robert Burrowes

Why does nonviolent action work? And how good was Mohandas K. Gandhi as a nonviolent…


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At 8:33pm on August 20, 2011, M.Gandhi College of Social Work said…
Greetings from land of Mahatma Gandhi

We are organsing Pad Yatra ( 1st - 5th Oct 2011) , like salt march in west champaran continuing with rural camp for MSW students for 10 days. We are hoping 250 participants from different college of social work .

Also organizing conference in Jan 2012 ( 27th - 30th Jan ) , topic is " Reinventing Social Work Education - Gandhian Perspective of Sustainable Societies " , it will be held and host by Gujarat Vidhyapith , Ahmadabad , Gujarat. University established by Mahatma Gandhi in 1920.

We are looking for collaboration and guide from you. Please let me know for any details.
I need your guidance and support to make alive Gandhi Ashram , in champaran. which first ever place in india gandhiji started movement.

Birendra Kumar , Director ,
Mahatma Gandhi College of Social Work
Contact No: 09910711112


How to Learn Nonviolent Resistance As King Did

Created by Shara Lili Esbenshade Feb 14, 2012 at 11:48am. Last updated by Shara Lili Esbenshade Feb 14, 2012.

Two Types of Demands?

Created by Shara Lili Esbenshade Jan 9, 2012 at 10:16pm. Last updated by Shara Lili Esbenshade Jan 11, 2012.

Why gender matters for building peace

Created by Shara Lili Esbenshade Dec 5, 2011 at 6:51am. Last updated by Shara Lili Esbenshade Jan 9, 2012.

Gene Sharp & the History of Nonviolent Action

Created by Shara Lili Esbenshade Oct 10, 2011 at 5:30pm. Last updated by Shara Lili Esbenshade Dec 31, 2011.


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