This study considers political philosophy as a normative inquiry and examines how the topic of peace can be approached. Political philosophy, particularly theories of justice, is a normative study that deals with the “ought” in the world, in contrast to empirical studies that consider the empirical aspects of the world. Approaches to this question can be divided into two subfields: ideal and non-ideal theories. In the international community, non-ideal theories have been considered as the primary issue in confronting a non-ideal state of affairs, such as the use of force. One such theory is the just war tradition. A controversy between utopianism and realism over the idealization level to be employed in normative studies exists even within this theoretical framework. Political philosophy includes aspects that dare to uphold unrealistic utopias. The possible agendas of peace studies that can be interpreted as extensions of these aspects include opportunity-cost pacifism, justice in the abolition of war, and the theory of world integration.
This paper examines the often taken-for-granted relationship between peacebuilding and peace studies. Section 1 reviews the peacebuilding literature and asks implications of the statement that statebuilding has become the only approach to peacebuilding policy. Section 2 clarifies the relationship between Conflict Resolution, Peace Studies, and peacebuilding policy by asking what it means to apply an original Conflict Resolution perspective to peacebuilding policy. Section 3 considers the implications of incorporating the Conflict Resolution perspective to peacebuilding policy with a focus on the “everyday peace” concept. “Everyday peace” is part of new emerging studies that incorporate a perspective “from below.” These studies focus more on ordinary people and their potential, and are thus highly compatible with Peace Studies. Through these examinations, the paper points to more diverse approaches to peacebuilding.
Many feminist scholars have explored the causes and potential solutions of sexual violence against women in conflict, yet some have pointed out the “side effects” of these studies. This article aims to revisit the study of sexual violence against women in conflict by reviewing previous studies on this issue.
I describe the four main points of the studies which considered existing studies on sexual violence against women in conflict. First, claiming that rape is a weapon of war and requiring protection of women without considering the causes of women's vulnerabilities can perpetuate and reinforce gender norms that women should be protected which can contribute to violence against women as a symbol of subjection to an enemy. Second, recent studies have portrayed violence against women in conflict as a characteristic of the “barbaric” third world. Third, examining the causes of the sexual violence against women in conflict, solely focusing on gender, without acknowledging multiple factors could position the violence as inevitable or“natural”. Lastly, focusing on only female suffering can render male victims of sexual violence in conflict invisible.
In order to avoid these problems in the study of sexual violence against women in conflict, I argue that we must analyze power relationships pertaining to gender, sexuality, ethnicity, religion, and global economic structure surrounding survivors and pay careful attention to power dynamics between survivors and researchers.
This research essay, through text mining techniques, compares the extent of non-nuclear norms that appear either in the “Peace Declaration” by mayors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, or in Japanese prime ministers' addresses at the peace ceremonies held each year on August 6th and 9th, as two variants of typical intersubjectively shared discourses to verify the extent of acceptance of non-nuclear norms in Japanese society. Using KH Coder, a free use text mining software for academic purposes, the study prepared and applied coding rules to those particular texts to extract notions from patterns of vocabulary and expression that suggest the existence of various non-nuclear norms including norms of nuclear non-use and those of nuclear nonproliferation. Then, it ran chi-square examinations to verify whether or not there exist statistically significant differences in the tendencies of norm-related narratives by the types of discourses. It is ascertained that, in the post-Cold War period, both references to nuclear weapons use (which suggest the existence of norms of nuclear non-use) and advocacy for banning nuclear weapons appear significantly more frequently in Peace Declarations than in PMs' addresses. Japanese prime ministers tend to make issues of nuclear weapons use and nuclear deterrence invisible to the public by not mentioning those issues in their speeches at the ceremonies held on the Hiroshima and Nagasaki anniversaries. Also, the research found that there exist only a few statistically significant differences in patterns of norm-related discourses among peace declarations and PM addresses in the post-Cold War period by themselves, regardless of the venue (Hiroshima or Nagasaki), the mayors' political affiliations, or particular prime minister' political standings (either from conservative LDP government or non-LDP government).
This article aims to critique a simplified narrative of hegemonic peace through a study of the railway construction process in late-nineteenth-century Victorian India. In many cases, the discourse on hegemonic peace depends on the overwhelming economic power or influence on international institutions. However, in such narratives, the meaning of peace is reduced to a negative one. To shed light on the various meaning of peace, this article focuses on historical modes of hegemony through a discussion of railway construction, although fragmentary, in the context of peace studies. This article argues that railway construction under the British Empire had incurred deforestation as an opportunity for an ‘Anthropocene’, despite its project of realising ‘peace’ in the thoughts of the governors of the empire. By examining the concrete practice of railway construction, I suggest that a theory of structural violence, as have been proposed by Johan Galtung, requires development in two directions. First, I introduce the concept of ‘power of circulation/distribution’ to position railway construction in the structuring of structural violence. Second, the environmental destruction caused by railway construction was positioned as ‘slow violence’ and the need to apprehend the temporal dimension of violence is discussed. Through such a perspective, new directions of peace studies are discussed.
The measures against Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (SEA) of aid beneficiaries and target population perpetrated by humanitarian and development workers have been prompted since 2002 with the media coverage of sexual abuse of a number of vulnerable children such as refugee and internally displaced children in West Africa by aid workers including UN staff members.
“Secretary-General's Bulletin: Special measures for protection from sexual exploitation and sexual abuse,” for instance, was issued in 2003 to strengthen the measures against SEA.
SEA issues, however, have not been resolved to date. It is partly because Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse (PSEA) have remained as a formality and failed to prevent the occurrence of SEA and assist SEA victims/survivors. The paper aimed to examine the structural factors behind the persistence of SEA despite the fact that PSEA has been in place for over 20 years since 2002, through a literature review and the analysis of the results of the author's interviews with aid workers and beneficiaries.
The analysis of the study has identified that the measures for PSEA have been implemented without fully respecting the intensions of the SEA victims/survivors and the people at high risk of SEA such as women and children. Rather, these measures have been utilized for keeping the prestigious status of aid agencies.
The study concludes that it is necessary for humanitarian and development aid agencies to remove their paternalistic nature and overcome the problems associated with paternalism such as self-righteousness, male dominance, and racial discrimination, in order for PSEA to fulfill its essential function of preventing the occurrence of SEA and supporting the recovery of SEA victims/survivors without becoming a mere formality.
This article examines the possibility of exercising collective rights of minorities which peoples have by focusing on the historical development of the legal system and the contents of legal rights for Minorities/Peoples.
After World War I, the collective rights of minorities were recognized as they were incorporated into bilateral or multilateral treaties. But unfortunately, minorities' collective rights were taken away under Hitler's Nazis. Paradoxically, they used the pretext of protecting German minorities and invaded Czechoslovakia. After World War II, the right to self-determination as a collective right made a dramatic come back onto the stage of international relations but it was not for protecting minorities but only within the limited context of decolonization. Minorities are protected under Article 27 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights such as enjoying cultural rights or linguistic rights. But do minorities have collective rights such as effective joining rights or autonomy rights? It is necessary to consider the status quo in which the voices of minorities are not reflected in governmental policies and thus lack the measures and resources to preserve their identities.
As a result, the question has been raised whether peoples' rights and minorities' rights can be clearly divided into collective rights and individual rights. This article presents the comparison of the development of these rights between the system of self-determination and that of minorities. It discusses two different theories and practices, highlighting the ambiguity within the definitions of minorities and people. Because of the analysis, this article concludes that minorities could have a part of collective rights by pointing out the “proximity” between minorities and peoples both virtually and legally.