Course Offerings

What inspires you?

The Program on Justice and Peace offers degree options and coursework for all undergraduate schools.

Before declaring the Major, students must take JUPS 123: Introduction to Justice and Peace ( offered every semester and online in summer) as their first course in the program.
COLSFSMSBNHS
– Major
– Minor
– Minor– Minor-Minor

Students should talk to their advising Dean about their fields of study, and are also encouraged to arrange a meeting with the JUPS Program Directors.

Please click on the course title to view a brief description of the course.

Core Courses

This gateway course surveys the histories, theories, concepts, actors, and pedagogies that compose the growing transdisciplinary field of justice and peace studies. We will familiarize ourselves with current issues in the field, as well as the movements and structures that both contribute to and provide obstacles to the creation and sustainability of a more just and peaceful world. The course presents a wide range of theoretical and practical perspectives on peace and social justice, including: poverty, hunger, and homelessness; racism, sexism, and homophobia; violence, oppression, slavery, and colonization; and complex issues of sustainable development and humanitarian aid. Through historical and contemporary analyses, the course addresses critical issues of militarism, inequality, and injustice, emphasizing the development of viable alternatives. This course is highly recommended for first-year students and sophomores interested in pursuing the JUPS major or minor. As an introductory course, it requires permission for seniors. ( Offered spring, fall and online in summer).

This foundational seminar is taught each fall and spring semester; it is designed to introduce students to a perspective on nonviolence that integrates theory and practice, drawing upon a wide range of literature and examples. A central aim of the course is to develop a holistic view of nonviolence as a set of practices that range from the personal and local to the national and global. The course seeks to foster an experiential engagement with the tenets of nonviolence, through participation in workshops, activities, and projects in the community and region. The overarching objective is to develop a systematic analysis of nonviolence in order to cultivate effective approaches to addressing contemporary challenges in society through nonviolent means, as well as envisioning and animating a world built on the tenets of nonviolence. ( offered spring, fall)

This course offers a thorough grounding of Conflict Transformation as a philosophical orientation, practical approach, and theoretical framework, as well as an analysis of its recent developments. The course strives to “transform” our understanding of three major aspects of conflict: 1) what we think about conflict; 2) how we think about conflict; and 3) how we engage in conflict. Students focus their learning on various contexts as contested spaces for social change and transformation regarding issues of violence, oppression, injustice, development, and difference. Particular emphasis is placed on the work and philosophies of John Burton, John Paul Lederach, Johan Galtung, and Paulo Freire, with a grounding in Conflict Transformation’s foundation of ‘peace by peaceful means’. Drawing on Lederach’s idea that Conflict Transformation is a way of “looking and seeing” conflicts, the course explores the deep culture and structure (Galtung) of conflicts in different settings, and identifies approaches to positive and sustainable change through a social justice lens. ( offered spring, fall)

Offered in the fall and summer semesters, this course explores the theories, practices, and ethics unique to research methodologies in the JUPS field. The course examines both qualitative and quantitative research frameworks including: participatory action research, feminist research methods, ethnographic methodologies, community-based research, ethnomethodologies, phenomenology, and participant observation. Students gain knowledge and experience with various techniques appropriate to inquiries in peace studies and social justice, such as active interviewing, working in fragile contexts and conflict settings, considering context, constructing meaningful surveys, identifying cases appropriate for study, and utilizing research as a tool for social change. The course considers the ethical issues involved with such research, from informed consent and IRB concerns to “ownership” of data and responsible use of research results. Through theoretical and practical engagement, students acquire the research skills necessary for developing a research proposal as they move toward completion of the JUPS major. Open to JUPS minors and majors, or by permission of the instructor. ( offered fall)

JUPS 303 is a requirement for majors that may be fulfilled in one of two ways. (1) Students will complete 3 JUPS module courses. They can be taken in one semester or spread out and taken separately throughout the student’s senior year. (2) The senior seminar can also be completed with students taking JUPS 303 in Spring semester of their senior year and completing a capstone paper/thesis. ( offered spring)

Spring 2021 Core Electives

This course will examine historical and contemporary international, US, Palestinian, and Israeli efforts to resolve the conflicting issues between the Palestinian national movement and the Zionist movement/Israel over the past century. This course also will delve into the policies established and legislation enacted by the United States in relation to Israel and the Palestinian people to explore whether they have helped or hindered these efforts. Professor Josh Ruebner will be teaching.

We use the terms human rights and justice every day, but what exactly do they mean? What are our human rights? What happens when they are violated? What do we mean when we ask for justice? Furthermore, what happens when our notions of justice clash with core concepts of fundamental human rights? This course will consist of a combination of theoretical and hands-on clinical explorations of domestic and international justice systems and international human rights standards, with the goal of better understanding the interplay between these two intertwined, but often divergent, concepts. Included in the course will be meetings with victims of crime, as well as conversations with justice system professionals, human rights lawyers, prosecutors, defense attorneys, and law enforcement. The course will include a visit to D.C. Superior Court to view a criminal trial and culminates in a mock trial where students will search for the proper balance between human rights and justice. Taught by Brian Kritz.

Although reports on youth and development often focus on youth involvement and motivations for violence, engagement among youth in proactive peacebuilding is increasingly a reality at the local, national, and regional levels. Such peacebuilding is often initiated by youth themselves, and is supported by local, national and international development and other organizations. This course will explore: evidence-based factors associated with youth engagement in peacebuilding; the wide range of peacebuilding activities and their demonstrated outcomes; and the roles that public and private sector organizations play in supporting and/or presenting barriers to youth engagement in peacebuilding. The course will entail interactive lectures by both youth who have been engaged in peacebuilding and others who have collaborated with youth on their peacebuilding activities and virtual participation in an international conference regarding youth and peacebuilding. Students will write two brief discussion papers; prepare a critical review of a published report on youth engagement in peacebuilding; and design a community-based project for youth engagement in peacebuilding.

Spring 2021 One Credit Modules

History has shown that stories are inextricably linked to what it means to be human. Before there was formal communication, there were stories–on cave paintings, within ancient temples, and passed down verbally from every culture and generation our world has known. It should come as no surprise, then, that individuals, groups, and organizations looking to advance justice and peace should utilize storytelling as a key tool to drive influence and social action. This course will teach students how to create–and then practice telling–strategic stories that spark action in order to advance the issues they care about most. Upon course completion, students will have created a working portfolio of the key stories every change leader must know how to deliver while also reflecting upon topics like the ethics of storytelling, how storytelling will evolve in the future, and which story archetypes frame their own thinking.

This course aims to help students understand the importance of mental health advocacy from a social justice pedagogy. Mental health advocacy challenges practices that perpetuate stigma and discrimination. Students will analyze mental health stigma associated with cultural and systemic barriers that limit social inclusion, access, and healing. This course will equip students with the tools necessary to champion for mental health positive policy, structures, and resources. Dates: Tuesday 5.00-7.30 ( 6 weeks starting from day 1 of classes)

Restorative Justice is a community-based philosophy and approach to preventing and responding to harm with roots in indigenous traditions. It involves facilitated group processes that emphasize accountability through shared understanding and repairing the harm done. It has been used successfully in many contexts, including school and juvenile justice systems. This course is intended to introduce participants to the restorative justice movement, as well as to support participants in learning and integrating key concepts, tools, and skills related to restorative justice through an experiential, interactive, and self-reflective approach. Participants will be asked to think about the role of Restorative Justice in the modern US social context, as well as in their own personal lives. This course meets only on Saturday 6th Feb and Saturday 13th Feb, 10.00-6.00

Spring 2021 JUPS Cross Listed Courses

This course examines public opinion, traditional political participation, and the political philosophy of race. We will engage ideas dealing with racial formation, the study of race relationally, and exploring the difficulties of governing amidst diverse constituencies.

This seminar examines anti-black racism within the criminal justice system to consider whether racial equity within the criminal justice system is even possible. In particular, we will analyze and debate how anti-black racism governs laws, policies, policing, juror selection, prosecutorial discretion, and the rights of the accused. We will think about how the norms and discourses we take for granted may reinforce and embed racism, and we will consider how philosophies that underwrite the criminal justice system parallel those of other American social institutions, including education. We will pay close attention to how race and racism intersect with other identities and oppressions as we attempt to understand the historical and contemporary dimensions of these problems. We will explore how humanistic and social science methodologies and theories can help us to contest ideas of color-blindness and race-neutrality that ultimately retrench black inequality. Beyond thinking about the problem, this course will challenge its participants to develop solutions to some aspect of the criminal justice system and/or a related institution. Students will have the opportunity to develop racial-bias training for police departments, juror bias-training, and other solutions that alleviate racial inequity in the criminal justice system. The purpose of the course is to provide thought-leadership on some of the key issues in criminal justice that stymie racial economic empowerment and justice and to propose new models for engaging these topics. While criminal justice remains our primary focal point, employment, housing, and education inequality and reform necessarily factors into our discussion.Students enrolling in the course can expect to attendance, participation, two-short papers, an in-class presentation, midterm exam, and final project to determine their grades. They should also expect roundtable discussions where we problem solve and flesh out solutions to the problems.

Did you know that a mere few miles from GU, sunken ghost ships of WWI eerily crest a rivers surface at low tide and a kayak will ferry you there to cavort with the herons, the eagles, and your own vision of a war fought 100 years ago? The somberly sonorous voice of Yeats in his 1920 The Second Coming perhaps most wondrously confronts both the horror of WWI, the brute itself, and the ensuing madness unleashed upon a new century perceiving its ideals lost but not gone: Turning and turning in the widening gyre. . . Things fall apart. . . The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere [t]he ceremony of innocence is drowned. . . And what rough beast, its hour come round at last, [s]louches toward Bethelehem to be born? Modernisms vision ghosts the wars bitter but resilient afterbirth, offering us a battlefield strewn with individual suffering and resurrection beside the mass shame and redemption. And we, the 2020 readers in English 168, enter the surreal fray begun in 1914 of chivalric courage that becomes the sacrificial charge to rescue friend and the barbaric attack to defeat foe. This course invites its participants to read a medley of perspectives and genres of WWI literature in order to ask how and why this war both reflected and catapulted change in the ways we understand and value life, provoking such questions as where is our present or immediate identity, both individual and collective, in light of this wars influence? How did this particular war cause chivalry to give way to the monstrous? What happens to perception when the beautifully strong becomes the grotesque freak? Did we land in the abyss of the Great Wars aftermath because we leapt from Edwardian extravagance or Victorian hubris or even complacency? Why did this world experience (the Great War and its effects), which destroyed the lives of so many, also propel liberation for women? How and to what effect did its technological advances even with humanitarian aims – participate in moral degradation? Why did so many artists respond NOT with anger or grief but instead with cynical detachment did they reflect the sympathies of the masses or were they a movement unto themselves? And given the unique (Heroic? Showy? Game-Changing?) role of the U.S. in this war, how has our own nations history in global fighting been shaped by this war? How does the Great Wars Art of its own time and of our time provoke us to re-view this war and our role within it as well as on its borders? Isnt it intriguing to consider that the language of the performing arts, such as theatre (a space of entertaining audiences and perspectives), resounds in identifying battlegrounds, often referenced as theatres of war, and the medical operating room, often marked as the surgical theatre? How were entertainment halls theatres sites of recruiting soldiers as were propagandist posters appealing to womens power, the value of family, and an individuals right and responsibility to enact moral duty? Participants will complete two short papers reflecting on our course readings, and one longer argumentative research paper embracing both course texts/discoveries and your own primary research, come to each class prepared to interact in critical thinking responses to texts and their ideas, and collaborate with colleagues to prepare a panel (see topics below on course calendar). Last, but not least, we will visit the new memorial in DCs Pershing Park, The Weight of Sacrifice, personally led through its spaces and art by its amazing architect, Joe Weishaar.

Students must have taken one of the pre-requisites or receive permission of the instructor. Open to students enrolled in FMST, AMST, and JUPS, CALL Programs.

In consequence of its Catholic and Jesuit heritage and purpose, Georgetown University is committed to assisting students in exploring and probing the ethical dimensions and consequences of every field of human endeavor and scholarship. 

For those studying and preparing to work in the field of international relations, the ethical challenges are great, given phenomena like: genocide; terrorist attacks on non-combatants; state–sponsored brutalization of poor and/or powerless populations; famine; refugee and migrant outflows, and environmental degradation. Moreover, states continue to arm themselves with weapons of mass destruction capable of destroying the human community and the planet and “small arms”—ranging from machetes to anti-personnel landmines—capable of wreaking widespread harm. 

The purpose of “GOVT 420: Ethical Issues in International Relations” is to investigate three questions in world politics: 

To what extent are states (and their leaders) obligated to act in accord with moral principles in their relations with other states? 

What is the chief content of these obligations—as these constrain a state’s external and internal sovereignty—and what are the limits of obligation? 

What ethical frameworks have theorists and practitioners of world politics developed over the centuries that may assist students of international relations in developing a coherent perspective on the question of moral obligations between and among states? 

This course has been renumbered, effective Fall 2014. A student who earned credit for GOVT 420 Ethical Iss Intrnl Reltns in a prior term should not enroll and cannot earn credit in this class.

Enrollment in this course is by permission of instructor. Copy and paste the application Link on your browser. **** Application Link: https://forms.gle/btRzu9QLfcdLvY9YA ***** This 5-credit course is intended for a small number of passionate and highly-motivated students. The class will not have readings, papers, or exams. Instead, students will spend an intensive semester as investigative journalists, documentarians, and social justice activists, with the goal of creating a public documentary (in addition to a website and social media campaign) that makes the case for the innocence of a wrongfully convicted person who is currently languishing in prison. Students will reinvestigate the original crime and conviction, and their task will be to portray the main issues, challenges, injustices, and human stories involved in each case.The course is co-taught by Professor Marc Howard and his childhood friend, Adjunct Professor Marty Tankleff, who was himself wrongfully convicted and incarcerated for almost 18 years before being exonerated. Previous versions of the course have resulted in the exoneration and release of Valentino Dixon, while also providing significant progress in the legal prospects of several other potential exonerees.The class is scheduled for Fridays 9:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Although we will not always meet as a full group each week for that full block of time, students must keep their Fridays open, free from other classes or regular commitments. Students will be meeting and working together within smaller groups, and consulting with the professors, on a regular basis throughout the semester.The output for the coursewhich will be prepared by five groups of students working closely together in teams of threewill include the production of short documentaries that are humanizing portraits of the lives, families, and complicated legal cases of five people who were likely wrongfully convicted. At the end of the semester, the students will present their final documentaries at a larger public event hosted by the Prisons and Justice Initiative.The course will be restricted to a maximum of 15 Georgetown students. Priority will be given to those students who have a strong academic or practical background in this area, along with a passion for the issue of wrongful convictions and criminal justice reform. Having a background in investigative journalism and/or video production is a bonus, but not a requirement.The enrollment process for this course will take place before live registration begins. Students who are admitted into the course will be automatically enrolled by the Registrar before the start of the live registration process.***Application Deadline (including video) Friday, November 20 at 5:00pm EST***

This seminar is intended for students interested in thinking through questions like the following: Do contemporary Just War Theorists think the use of predator drone strikes against suspected terrorists is justifiable? If a detainee at Guantanamo is not designated a Prisoner of War, and the US Government does not plan to indict and try the detainee as a criminal suspect, might the government be justified, nonetheless, in detaining that individual indefinitely? Does International Human Rights Law still obtain even during war and conflictor do the Laws of War [International Humanitarian Law] hold sway? Does the emerging international norm of Responsibility to Protect justify regime change or only direct protection of civilians under fire?

This listening-intensive course looks at music as a component of cultural identities and collisions through the dual lens of ethnomusicology (anthropology of music) and world music (a popcultural/journalistic/marketing view). The syntheses that arise from the interactions of the dominant Western culture with its others are politically charged as much as they may be musically potent, and are increasingly dependent upon globalization and technology for their creation and dissemination. Case studies will examine the dynamics of different forms of cultural interaction over the past couple of centuries, from Cold War nationalism in the Bulgarian Radio Choir to the impact of the Chernobyl meltdown on the underground rock scene of the Belarusan intelligentsia; from the meteoric rise (and fall) of Anglo-Indian pop of the 1990s to the complex multi-ethnic mix that has driven flamenco across a millennium from Moorish Andaluca to the art-school scene of Barcelona of the 2000s. Other subjects include Javanese gamelan and its confluences with Western art music, South African township jive echoing the arc of apartheid, the alliance of dance forms with nationalism in 20th century South America, the colonial and diasporic sources of the Riverdance phenomenon, and the multiple Francophone audiences of Cajun-American rocker Zachary Richard. Fulfills HALC requirement. X-List: Justice and Peace Studies, Sociology.

Sociology Core Topics Course: This course has three complementary parts. Students begin with an overview of the U.S. justice system. We pay special attention to the last 35 years and the impact of the War on Drugs on society, especially mass incarceration. Using the sociological theory of dramaturgy, students have the opportunity to make it real through mock trials. Playing the roles of attorneys and witnesses, students learn the mechanics of a trial and create legal strategies to best represent their clients. It all comes together when students enact the trials in courtrooms at Georgetown Law with legal professionals serving as judges. The last third of the course focuses on Hot Topics in the law. Students will read landmark Supreme Court cases on such topics as, gun ownership, climate change, campaign finance, immigration, and the criminalization of poverty. Students choose one topic they will be an expert in and, in small groups, create an informative website and accompanying short video or performance informing their peers why they need to know about the issue and what they can do about it.

Material goods surround us; they are necessary for our well-being and express identity and status. In today’s global economic market, we are all entangled in webs of consumption, production, and the disposal of goods that often harm the environment and others. How do we ethically navigate this shifting terrain when the environment and human person are increasingly subject to commodification? In this course we seek to understand inequality and identity in consumer culture, particularly in light of Christian economic ethics. Practices of religious and secular resistance will be covered and special attention will be given to how both religion and dissent are also commodified. While there is an emphasis on Christian theology, readings and discussion are not limited to Christian approaches. This course has been previously offered as JUPS380: Justice and Consumer Culture. In this course we seek to understand inequality and identity in consumer culture, particularly in light of Christian economic ethics. Practices of religious and secular resistance will be covered and special attention will be given to how both religion and dissent are also commodified. While there is an emphasis on Christian theology, readings and discussion are not limited to Christian approaches. This course has been previously offered as JUPS380: Justice and Consumer Culture.

How do we become courageous but not reckless? Maintain hope in a world full of despair? Discover how discourse, habits and Christian virtues sustain courage, hope and justice in its religious, psychological and social dimensions. We will explore physical, moral, and spiritual courage, hope, and justice through the lives of individuals, such as Colin Kaepernick, and communities, such as the protestors of the Dakota Access Pipeline. We will look at how courage and hope manifest in everyday lifein addiction, in financial stress, playgrounds and context of a warming planet. While there is an emphasis on Christian ethics, readings and discussion are not limited to Christian approaches. This course is a Community Based Learning course through which students partake in 20 hours of work over the course of the semester with local community organizations as part of regular course work. Partnering opportunities include working with after school programming, people experiencing homelessness, or through existing CSJ programs. Transportation costs are covered. Questions? Please email Kerry.Danner@georgetown.edu

This course provides an introduction to the body of knowledge that has come to be known as feminist theory. Throughout the course we will consider a wide range of feminist thought, focusing particularly on theory in action – that is, how theory becomes, how it influences and creates, and how it can both dismantle and (re)build.  To do so, we will pay close attention to the spaces in and through which theories are articulated, as well as the ways in which theories themselves can construct and transform space. Through a range of feminist writing on such intersecting topics as gender, race, colonialism, capitalism, globalization, and emotion we will learn how theory can give us insight into the mechanisms of belonging, marginalization, and socio-material change. The course will culminate in a rigorously curated final project that interprets feminist theories into feminist practice aimed at affecting positive change in the Georgetown community.

Summer 2021 Courses Coming Soon

This gateway course surveys the histories, theories, concepts, actors, and pedagogies that compose the growing transdisciplinary field of justice and peace studies. We will familiarize ourselves with current issues in the field, as well as the movements and structures that both contribute to and provide obstacles to the creation and sustainability of a more just and peaceful world. The course presents a wide range of theoretical and practical perspectives on peace and social justice, including: poverty, hunger, and homelessness; racism, sexism, and homophobia; violence, oppression, slavery, and colonization; and complex issues of sustainable development and humanitarian aid. Through historical and contemporary analyses, the course addresses critical issues of militarism, inequality, and injustice, emphasizing the development of viable alternatives. This course is open to all students and highly recommended for first-year students and sophomores interested in pursuing the JUPS major or minor. ( offered online every summer)

Venture to a cosmopolitan city that is still emerging from decades of apartheid, and is marked by its history of legal and racial discrimination, inequality and oppression, but is all a hub for community organizations working on issues related to human rights and social justice. You will be working with community organizations and through discussions, lectures, site visits and meetings with community leaders, you will gain insight into the history of South Africa and the system of apartheid and extend this understanding to analyze the ongoing impact of past injustices on present policies and social movements. In addition to lectures and discussions led by faculty and site visits to historical places, you will be working and immersed in local cultural contexts through a placement at a community service organization where you will observe and participate in community struggles for economic, education, and social equality. ( offered every summer)

Past Course Offerings

Click HERE for Past Core and Cross-Listed JUPS Elective Courses

Click HERE for major requirements

Click HERE for minor requirements

Consortium Courses 

The Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area, includes: American University, Catholic University of America, Gallaudet University, George Mason University, George Washington University, Georgetown University, Howard University, Joint Military Intelligence College, Marymount University, National Defense University, Southeastern University, Trinity University, University of the District of Columbia, and the University of Maryland-College Park.

Consortium enrollment is available on a space-available basis to degree-program students currently enrolled in a Consortium member school visiting another member school. For Links to Consortium standard Cross-Registration rules and procedures, Consortium schools’ class schedules and academic calendars, plus standing list of courses excluded from Consortium registration, see the Consortium website.

See our listing of DC-area Peace, Justice, and Conflict Studies higher education programs under the Resources tab.