The “Peacebuilder” podcast, hosted by Patience Kamau MA ‘17, releases the debut episode of its second season today.
This announcement will come as a delight to the more than 6,500 listeners in 102 countries and 1,239 cities across the globe who enjoyed Season I.
Those 10 episodes celebrated the 25th anniversary of Eastern Mennonite University’s Center for Justice and Peacebuilding’s and highlighted the contributions and professional fields of faculty and staff.
The podcast is among just a handful covering the general peacebuilding field. It is available on EMU’s Peacebuilder website, Apple Podcasts on iTunes, Spotify, Google Podcast, Stitcher, iHeart Radio, TuneIn and other podcast directories.
“Return listeners will find that the second season dives a bit deeper into specific areas of peacebuilding practice and concepts,” said Kamau. “New listeners will be inspired to learn more about peacebuilding and I hope everyone gains some knowledge that moves them toward deeper levels of self-actualization.”
Join a livestreamed interview March 30 from 4-5 p.m. with Patience and hear more about how the podcast began, what’s new for Season II, and why this unique format is such an exciting way to talk about and learn from peacebuilding practitioners. Lindsay Martin, CJP development director, is the host. Learn more and register to attend.
Season II’s first episode features Vernon Jantzi, currently director of academic programs at Eastern Mennonite University’s Center for Justice and Peacebuilding and a co-founder of the center more than 25 years ago. Janzti served as director and co-director from 1995-2002.
“This first episode bridges between last season’s theme, with Dr. Jantzi giving some of CJP’s history, while also reflecting on current issues,” Kamau said.
Jantzi begins the interview with a story of fascinating coincidence: how his visit to a rural community while on alternative service in Nicaragua became the subject of a 10-minute extemporaneous speech in Spanish and how that topic led, not to an assistantship at Cornell to teach the language, but instead a full scholarship to earn his doctorate in sociology.
Jantzi also discusses how his work with land reform in Costa Rica led to an exploration of mediation and peacebuilding, followed by a collaboration with John Paul Lederach, then also teaching in the sociology department at EMU, to create a graduate program in conflict transformation.
Now 26 years later, Jantzi reflects on the changes he’s seen in CJP and how the center is reimagining itself in ways that are responsive to the current political environment in the United States but also to its global network of alumni.
“…Working with people in different parts of the world, they’d say, ‘well, you know, it’s great to have you here …But you know, if you really wanted to make a difference, you’d go back and you would change the way your government relates to the rest of the world, or you would do this,’” Jantzi said. “…That’s the exciting part about being at CJP right now.”
Respect, dignity, an awareness of the need to honor past history and trauma to promote current healing and how we do this at the national and local levels — Jantzi sees these approaches as key values for CJP now and in the coming months.
Jantzi’s longtime connection to peacebuilding work in Mexico offers a case study for the importance of trust and cooperation among community members. Successful efforts to “rebuild the social fabric” in that region now integrate elements of restorative justice, trauma healing and truth-telling, he says.
The next episode of Peacebuilder podcast, featuring Professor Catherine Barnes on designing deliberative dialogue processes (facilitation), drops on March 10.