“Peace cannot suddenly descend from the heavens. It can only come when the root causes of trouble are removed.”

— Jawaharlal Nehru

The mission statement of the University of San Francisco declares its intention to prepare its students to be leaders “who will work for justice for all people.” In that light, the courses in the Peace and Justice Studies Program offer USF undergraduates an analysis of conditions that lead to war and injustice, as well as opportunities to develop a vision for a just and peaceful society and an appreciation of how they can contribute to that goal.

The possibility of change, as evidenced by the growth in recent years of democratic governance and nonviolent movements for justice and freedom, is encouraging. New possibilities for peace and justice have emerged from the end of the Cold War and the rise of international non-governmental organizations. Nevertheless, new problems encouraged by entrenched attitudes and oppressive institutions continue to impede progress towards a more just and peaceful world. Ethnic violence has increased and the gap between rich and poor, both in the United States and in the world as a whole, is growing. Militarism continues, and the destruction of the environment threatens the very survival of the planet.

With serious concern, but also with great hope, the Department of Politics sponsors the Peace & Justice Studies Program (PJS), an interdisciplinary minor, to address global problems and prospects for change.



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