Practicality: The parameter of ‘practicality’ acknowledges the complexity of CPE implementation and the particularity of different post-conflict contexts. Therefore, it facilitates the advancement of a context-specific, location-sensitive CPE that is based on a true understanding of local socio-political climates. The field might benefit from enlisting some prerequisites to its application.
Sustainability: The parameter of ‘sustainability’ acknowledges that CPE can serve as a factor of sustainable long term change only when an equitable social structure and reality provide a background for it.
Scalability: The parameter of ‘scalability’ has a modest vision of the scale at which CPE can effectively operate. It also decides on targeting CPE efforts based on answers to the question: ‘How effective is individual agency in the face of structural asymmetry in this particular context’?
The Syrian context is in a bad need for peace education interventions. Reflecting on the challenges it faces, for CPE to operate in such a complex context, the field needs to be reoriented towards a more realistic view of what it can achieve and how it can achieve it. It needs to engage in questions like: does CPE need to define more modest goals? Does it need to reconsider its target, sort out its priorities or just manage its expectations of what it can and cannot achieve?
Basma is an MPhil student in Education, Globalisation and International Development at the University of Cambridge. A member of St Johns College, she is currently interested in the role of education in post-conflict transformation, social reconstruction and peace-building. You can connect with her on LinkedIn.
Bajaj, M. (2008) . Encyclopedia of peace education, USA: IAP publishing
Bajaj, M. (2015). ‘Pedagogies of resistance and critical peace education praxis’. Journal of Peace Education, 12(2), pp.154-166.
Bajaj, M. and Hantzopoulos, M. eds. (2016). Peace education: International perspectives. London: Bloomsbury Publishing.
Bekerman, Z. and Zembylas, M. (2011). Teaching contested narratives: Identity, memory and reconciliation in peace education and beyond. UK: Cambridge University Press.
Cole, E.A. (2007). ‘Transitional justice and the reform of history education’. The International Journal of Transitional Justice, 1(1), pp.115-137.
Davies, L., (2004). Conflict and education: Complexity and chaos. London: Routledge Falmer
Fisher, S., (2000). Working with conflict: skills and strategies for action. London: Zed books.
Freedman, S.W., Weinstein, H.M., Murphy, K. and Longman, T. (2008). ‘Teaching history after identity-based conflicts: The Rwanda experience’. Comparative Education Review, 52(4), pp.663-690. Freire, p. (1998). Pedagogy of hope. New York: Continuum Freire, P., (1970). Pedagogy of the Oppressed. New York: Bloomsbury
Hammack, P.L. (2009). ‘The cultural psychology of American-based coexistence programs for Israeli and Palestinian youth’. In Peace Education in Conflict and Post-Conflict Societies (pp. 127-144). USA: Palgrave Macmillan
Harris, I.M. and Morrison, M.L. (2013). Peace education. United States. McFarland.