Peace Through Pictures: Visual Communication and Nonviolence

Kevin Hamilton

Those involved in peacebuilding work will inevitably have need of images, whether they be in support of understanding conflicts at hand, or of transforming them. Today’s media and technology put image-making tools in the hands of anyone with a smartphone, but some of the available platforms take more time than others to adopt. And for all the care that peacebuilding work takes with verbal communication and structures of social support, what might our use of images also require to ensure inclusion and investment of all involved?

This course will introduce students to a few basic techniques of image production, including data visualization, mapping, slideshows, and illustration. No previous experience is required. Along the way we will look at examples from case studies in conflict, from protest signs and social media campaigns to war propaganda and memorials. Readings in theory and practice of visual communication will accompany our discussion, as we also seek to examine what the communication practices of peace-building work brings to the historical and present debates and discourse over how images function in society.

This course is being offered for training and for academic credit. The syllabus details the number of credits hours and associated course requirements.



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