Resources for Building a Culture of Peace


Creating a Culture of Peace
Produced by the Voice of Women.

This kit was designed to provide a framework to explore, in an active, participatory way, such things as:

Prices: English kit ($10), French kit ($6). Add $2 for postage. Outside Canada, prices are in US dollars.

For more information, please contact:
Canadian Voice of Women for Peace, 203 - 761 Queen St. West, Toronto, ON M6J 1G1; Tel.: (416) 603-7915; Fax: (416) 603-7916; Email: vow@; Web site: www.inter


Culture of Peace
Produced by the Canadian Commission for UNESCO

    This kit illustrates the way that Canadians have collaborated with UNESCO to influence behaviors, forge values and bring about the institutional transformations essential for the elimination of the profound roots of violence, exclusion and conflict. The kit is meant to open a dialogue on what has been done and what remains to be done, build a better understanding between ourselves, multiply opportunities for cooperation and embark on a new direction for the construction of a culture of peace. It has four parts: 
(1) Evolution of the concept of a culture of peace; (2) UNESCO's tools for action; (3) Interactions between UNESCO, the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, and (4) Some examples of implementation and follow-up of UNESCO initiatives in Canada.

For more information, contact: Cdn. Commission for UNESCO, 350 Albert Street, P.O. Box 1047 Ottawa, ON K1P 5V8. Email:


The Zinn Reader:Writings on Disobedience and Democracy 
By Howard Zinn 
Seven Stories Press, 2000
ISBN: 1-888363-53-3
704 pages, US$15.96

No radical historian has reached as many hearts and minds as Howard Zinn. His A People's History of the United States sold over 400,000 copies. Zinn has a beautiful writing style: direct, forthright and accessible. Each of his works reminds us that embracing one's subjectivity can mean embracing one's humanity, that heart and mind can speak with one voice. 
The book is organized into six areas of deep interest to Zinn over the last 35 years: Race, Class, War, Law, History, and Means and Ends. In each, Zinn has chosen what he considers his best writings on the topic. A new introduction for each piece places it in historical context. He discusses: the hard fact of racism, in the South and in the North, at the start of the civil rights movement; LaGuardia, the Ludlow Massacre and "Growing Up Class-Conscious"; questioning the very idea of a "just war"; 
LBJ, the CIA, Nixon and Hiroshima; civil disobedience and the role of punishment in our society; Upton Sinclair, Sacco and Vanzetti and "Where to Look for a Communist"; why historians don't have to be "objective" and how the power of the academy is wasted; anarchism, violence and human nature and "The Spirit of Rebellion." 



Risking for Change:
Stories of Ordinary People
Compiled/edited by Kate Penner
First Freedom Foundation, 1999.
ISBN 0-9694768-1-7
254 pages, $17

This anthology explores the issues of acting out of conscience. The poems and stories presented here step physically, emotionally, spiritually and structurally across critical boundaries to speak out of moral conviction. Many are about people who broke laws 'written or social' against what they found ethically violated their consciences.
These stories are not about heroes. Conscience in action does not represent an ideology along the left or right political spectrum. It speaks from that quiet place of one's own truth. It has no boundaries, no ownership, territory or patent. Some writers frame their work around spiritual beliefs, others philosophically. All are valid, life-affirming and nonviolent.

For more info., or to order, contact: First Freedom Foundation, PO Box 8601, Victoria Central PO, Victoria BC V8W 3S2. Tel.: (250)384-5532.


Every Life is a Story:
The Social Relations of Science, Peace and Ecology
By Fred K. Knelman
Black Rose Books, 1999.
ISBN: 1-55164-136-4
224 pages, $24.99

Peace, environment and justice movements embrace separate elements of complex global problems and have largely remained multiple solitudes. This book examines these issues in an integrated and comprehensive manner. Knelman contends that these issues are cemented together by "sustainability." Only a world that has achieved global peace and a permanent accord with the ecological imperative, while advancing the cause of social justice and human rights, can be socially equitable and environmentally sound. 
The author analyses the negative and positive visions of globalization, a process whereby all transactions and the technologies which support them have achieved global dimensions. This is equally true for nuclear-armed missiles, communication/information technology and threats to the integrity of the biosphere. The global as an expression of the international rule of law guaranteeing human rights, ensuring social justice preventing conflict and protecting the environment has the potential for meaningful change. The author analyses the emergence of the unipolar world of Pax American and corporate rule, ozone depletion, climate change and attempts to prevent and mediate these global changes through global governance. The threat of nuclear war and the fatal links between civil and military nuclear power are also dealt with.
The author envisions a sustainable society based in Canada, a vision that subscribes to integration of the three solitudes of peace, justice and ecology. He argues that Canada could become a leader in the search for a new vision of global peace, environmental conservation and universal justice. 

Source: Review by Joan Russow, Peace Research, May 1999.

For more information, or to order, contact: Black Rose Books, Tel.: (800) 565 9523; Email: blackrose@


Waging Peace for a Living: 
An action plan for survival of life on earth
By Walt Taylor
Trafford Publishing, 
ISBN 1-55212-2344
231 pages, Cdn$24 (in Canada); US$16 (in US)

This is a bold but realistic response to half a century of dire warnings from the world's most distinguished scientists and other profound thinkers.
The book examines opportunities to undertake the challenging work required for the survival and well-being of life on earth.
Most are aware of the dark consequences of waging war with modern, sophisticated weapons. Taylor shines a bright light on the exhilarating benefits of waging total, all-out peace for as long as it takes to restore health to our ailing planet. We have only a very few decades left before it may be too late to change our modes of thinking for the transition to sustainable ways of living and earning a living.
This book will open the way for mutual benefit among interested NGOs, those who contribute to their work and everyone else.

For more information, or to order, contact: 2 - 3050 Nanaimo St., Victoria BC V8T 4Zl. Toll free: (888) 232-4444; Email:


Slumming it at the Rodeo:
The Cultural Roots of Canada's Right Wing Revolution
By Gordon Laird
Douglas & McIntyre, 1998.
ISBN: 1-55054-627-9
207 pages, $19.95

The 1990s will be remembered as the era of cost-cutting cowboys. Line dancing their way over social programs and teaching a new brand of fiscal fundamentalism, Reform Party's Preston Manning, Ontario's Mike Harris and Alberta's Ralph Klein have cast themselves as tough-talking rebels in the B-movie western of Canadian politics. Are these politicians true champions of a grassroots rebellion - or well-disguised guardians of the status quo?
This book is an entertaining, eye-opening ride through Canada's new frontier. Blending history, humor, social analysis and popular culture, award-winning author Gordon Laird challenges the cost-cutting cowboys to a show down on their own turf, in the process exposing how the roots of Canada's right-wing "revolution" lie solidly in our collective past.
Linda McQuaig says the book "shows that what parades as populism is really an extension of a slick corporate culture - and the negation of the democratic values it trumpets."