War And Peace: Curricular, Classroom, And Lecture Incorporation Strategies
Linda M. Woolf (woolflm@webster.edu) & Michael R. Hulsizer (hulsizer@webster.edu)
Webster University, Presentation given at the 111th Annual American Psychological Association Convention, 2003

From the war in Iraq and the ongoing war on terrorism to daily reminders of potential U.S. terrorism via color-coded alerts and crime on the nightly news we cannot escape the drum beat of violence in our society. Given our field can be defined as the study of cognitive and behavioral processes it is only appropriate that these issues are discussed in psychology courses. However, the question that many face is how to best approach any discussion of violence, terrorism, prejudice, and discrimination without overshadowing the more positive aspects of humanity.

During our hospitality suite we will discuss some of the means by which one can achieve balance in the discussion of altruism and aggression within the context of class discussion and material. While most instructors correctly perceive there to be an abundance of materials and discussion topics available for the discussion of the negative aspects of human behavior, there is the misperception that few opportunities exist to incorporate the positive aspects of human behavior into courses. In fact, recent research in positive psychology and an upsurge in interest in peace psychology provide an abundance of materials and discussion topics. Course suggestions, an annotated bibliography, and relevant web sites are provided.

Lecture Suggestions

From the very beginning, psychology in the United States has concerned itself with issues of peace and conflict. For example, the early writings of William James included essays on peace and war. Following World War II, research on the nature of interpersonal and intergroup violence burgeoned. Much of this research was immediately incorporated into psychology courses. Indeed, all the major social psychology textbooks and many introductory psychology books contain extensive writings devoted to the antecedents of aggression. However, following World War II there was also a simultaneous increase in research devoted to the study of peace and conflict resolution. Indeed, much has been learned about the antecedents of peace and effective conflict resolution across a variety of domains. Unfortunately, much of this research has not found its way into traditional psychology textbooks and courses. For example, while all social psychology textbooks include a section on aggression, only 40% devote a chapter much space to peace and conflict resolution (it should be noted that some of these chapters on conflict are in fact mini chapters included in the appendices).

The following list of lecture suggestions addresses the integration of interpersonal violence, ethnopolitical conflict, mass violence, torture, trauma, and war into the psychology curriculum. In addition, strategies for integrating topics associated with peace and conflict resolution (e.g., fundamental human rights, refugees, volunteerism) are also presented.


Treatment issues related to work with refugees, displaced persons, and survivors of torture, war, and genocide can be discussed in clinically related courses. Areas that can be discussed are the applicability of Western diagnoses with non-Western populations, unique concerns related to refugee and survivor mental health, unique ethical concerns, and the need for emotional care for the clinician or caregiver. Additionally, case studies including victims of extreme trauma and refugees can be examined. Various psychological disorders, which have in part their roots in trauma, can be discussed within the context of survival from ethnopolitical conflict, torture, or displacement. Topics with an extensive literature related to the above sources of trauma include post traumatic stress disorder, depression, depersonalization, and derealization. Secondary stress in second generation, human rights workers, and care providers also can be discussed.

Ajdukoviç, D. (Ed.). (1997). Trauma recovery training: Lessons learned. Zagreb, Croatia: Society for Psychological Assistance.

Bracken, P. J., & Petty, C. (Ed.). (1998). Rethinking the trauma of war. New York: Free Association Books.

De Jong, J. (Ed.) (2002). Trauma, war, and violence: Public mental health in socio-cultural context. New York: Kluwer Academic.

Elsass, P. (1997). Treating victims of torture and violence: Theoretical, cross-cultural, and clinical implications. New York: New York University Press.

Gerrity, E., Keane, T. M., & Tuma, F. (Eds.) (2001). The mental health consequences of torture. Bethesda, MD: National Institute of Mental Health.

Kleber, R. J., Figley, C. R., & Gersons, B. P. R. (Eds.). (1995). Beyond trauma: Cultural and societal dynamics. New York: Plenum Press

Marsella, A., Bornemann, T., Ekblad, S., & Orley, J. (1994). Amidst peril and pain: The mental health and well-being of the world’s refugees. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Ursano, R. J., McCaughey, B. G., & Fullerton, C. S. (Eds.). (1994). Individual and community responses to trauma and disaster: The structure of human chaos. New York: Cambridge University Press.

van der Veer, G. (1998). Counseling and therapy with refugees and victims of trauma: Psychological problems of victims of war, torture, and repression. New York: Wiley.

 Community Psychology and Health Psychology

A discussion of war and conflict as public health concerns can be included.

Langholtz, H. J. (Ed.). (1998). The psychology of peacekeeping.  Westport, CT: Praeger. Includes a very good chapter on the impact of landmines.

Pilisuk, M., & Ober, L. (1976). Torture and genocide as public health problems. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 46, 388-392.

Zinner, E. S., & Williams, M. B. (Eds.). (1999). When a community weeps: Case studies in group survivorship. Philadelphia, PA, US: Brunner/Mazel.

Cross-Cultural Psychology

Any discussion of cross-cultural psychology is incomplete unless it includes the topics of refugees, displaced persons, migration, human rights, torture, mass violence, ethnopolitical conflict, genocide, nationalism, and peace psychology. Also, difference in cultures or cultural events can be examined in relation to predispositions towards mass violence and genocide.

Berry, J. W. (1997). Immigration, acculturation, and adaptation. Applied Psychology: An International Review, 46, 5-68.

Bracken, P. J., Giller, J. E., & Summerfield, D. (1995). Psychological responses to war and atrocity: The limitations of current concepts. Social Science and Medicine, 40, 1073-1082.

Comas-Diaz,  L., Lykes, M. B., & Alarcon, R. (1998). Ethnic conflict and the psychology of liberation in Guatemala, Peru, and Puerto Rico. American Psychologist, 53, 778-792.

De Jong, J. (Ed.) (2002). Trauma, war, and violence: Public mental health in socio-cultural context. New York: Kluwer Academic.

Elsass, P. (1992). Strategies for survival: The psychology of cultural resilience in ethnic minorities. New York: New York University Press.

Soldatova, G. U. (1997). Strangers in the homeland: Ethnopsychological problems of forced immigrants in Russia. In D. F. Halpern & A. E. Voiskounsky (Eds.), States of mind: American and post-Soviet perspectives on contemporary issues in psychology (pp. 291-305). Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.

Ramirex, J. M., & Richardson, D. S. (Ed.) (2001). Cross-cultural approaches to research on aggression and reconciliation. Huntington, NY: Nova Science.

Developmental Psychology

A discussion of moral development and its relation to perpetrator behavior can be examined. For example, the discussion could address the issue of children and war both as the victim of extreme trauma and displacement as well as the psychological impact of child soldiering on development. Information concerning the potential for human cruelty and genocide can be examined in relationship to a discussion of parenting styles. Information concerning effective conflict resolution is not only relevant to international relations but also interpersonal and intrafamilial relationships. It can be taught within this context. There is a growing literature on aging survivors of genocide, torture, and so forth, and this can be related to topics such as generativity and life review.  

Davies, S. (2001). The long-term psychological effects of traumatic wartime experiences on older adults. Aging & Mental Health, 5, 99-103.

Dyregrov, A., Gjestad, R., & Raundalen, M. (2002). Children exposed to warfare: A longitudinal study. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 15, 59-68.

La Greca, A., Sivlerman, W. K., Vernberg, E. M., & Roberts, M. C. (Eds.) (2002). Helping children cope with disasters and terrorism. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Kay, A. (1998). Generativity in the shadow of genocide: The Holocaust experience and generativity.  In D. P. McAdams & E. de St. Aubin (Eds.), Generativity and adult development: How and why we care for the next generation (pp. 335-359). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Rousseau, C. Fort, G. G. D., & Corin, E. (2002). Time perspective in children living in a situation of armed conflict. In F. Azima & N. Grizenko (Eds.), Immigrant and refugee children and their families:  Clinical, research, and training issues (pp. 113-132). Madison, CT: International Universities Press.

Salerno, J. A., & Nagy, C. (2002). Terrorism and aging. Journals of Gerontology: Series A: Biological Sciences & Medical Sciences, 57, M552-M554.

Staub, E. (1996). Cultural-societal roots of violence: The examples of genocidal violence and of contemporary youth violence in the United States. American Psychologist, 51, 117-132.


A course in ethics or sections of research methods courses dealing with ethics can examine the origins of the early ethical guidelines for research such as the Nuremberg Code. Additionally, ethics can be discussed in the context of war crimes and topics such as moral exclusion and dehumanization of the other.   

Alexander, L. (1948). War crimes--their social-psychological aspects. American Journal of Psychiatry, 105, 170-177.

Jonsen, A. R., & Sagan, L. (1978). Torture and the ethics of medicine. Man and Medicine, 3, 33-49.

History and Systems in Psychology

The role that psychologists and psychological theory played during wartime can be examined. Additionally, the impact of the Holocaust, subsequent genocides, and ethnopolitical conflict can be studied in relation to the development of the fields of social, political, and peace psychology.

Smith, M. B. (1999). Political psychology and peace: A half-century perspective. Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology, 5, 1-16.

Introductory Psychology

The topic of peace psychology is an excellent addition to an introductory psychology course demonstrating the global ramifications of psychological research and study. Issues related to peace psychology also can be integrated throughout the course. For example, ethnocentrism and misperception can be discussed as aspects of perception, errors in thinking and judgment based on belief systems can be discussed in conjunction with cognition, and hedonic balancing can be discussed in relation to motivation. Material related to all courses described in this resource can be integrated into an introductory course.

Chirot, D., & Seligman, M. (Eds.). (2001). Ethnopolitical Warfare: Causes, Consequences, and Possible Solutions. Washington, D. C.: American Psychological Association.

Christie, D. J., Wagner, R. V., & Winter, D. D. (Eds.). (2001). Peace, conflict, and violence: Peace psychology for the 21st century. Upper Saddle River, NJ:  Prentice-Hall.

Kurtz, L. R., & Turpin, J. (1998). Encyclopedia of violence: Peace and conflict. San Diego, CA: Academic Press.

Learning and Cognition

Topics include the nature and causes of aggression, stereotyping and prejudice formation, and decision-making particularly within the moral realm. Additionally, many of the topics discussed in relation to social psychology are also applicable.       

Haritos-Fatouros, M. (1995). The official torturer: A learning model for obedience to the authority of violence. In R. D. Crelinsten & A. P. Schmid (Eds.), The politics of pain: Torturers and their masters (pp. 129-146). Boulder, CO: Westview Press.

Long, W. J., & Brecke, P. (2003). War and reconciliation: Reason and emotion in conflict resolution. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Opotow,  S. (Ed.) (1990). Moral exclusion [Special issue]. Journal of Social Issues, 46(1).

Ramirex, J. M., & Richardson, D. S. (Ed.) (2001). Cross-cultural approaches to research on aggression and reconciliation. Huntington, NY: Nova Science.

Personality Theories

A course in personality theory can stress the effect of the political context on theory development. For example, an analysis of Jung’s anti-Semitic writings or Frankl’s existentialist theory could be included. Cattell’s theory of Beyondism and its relation to the eugenics movement raises interesting questions for discussion and debate. A course in personality also can include discussions of the research concerning personality and helping behavior, prosocial behavior, altruism and human cruelty. These also can provide a basis for discussion about theory development and research methodology within the study of personality.

Alford, C. F. (1990). The organization of evil. Political Psychology, 11, 5-27.  

Kahana, B., Kahana, E. F., Harel, Z., & Segal, M. (1985-1986). The victim as helper: Prosocial behavior during the Holocaust. Humboldt Journal of Social Relations, 13, 357-373.

Kressel, N. (2002). Mass hate: The global rise of genocide and terror. New York: Plenum Press.

Staub, E. (1993). The psychology of bystanders, perpetrators, and heroic helpers. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 17, 315-341.   

 Psychology and Women

Women and children make up approximately 80% of the world’s refugees. The special needs of the women and the impact of displacement can be discussed. Additionally, there is a growing literature on women and wartime that can be included for study. Women's rights as human rights can also be discussed e.g. rape as a weapon of war.

Cole, E., Espin, O. M., & Rothblum, E. D. (Eds.). (1992). Refugee women and their mental health: Shattered societies, shattered lives. Binghamton, NY: Harrington Park Press.

Turshen, M., & Twagiramariya, C. (Eds.). (1998). What women do in wartime: Gender and conflict in Africa.  London: Zed Books.

Watts, C., & Zimmerman, C. (2002). Violence against women: Global scope and magnitude. Lancet, 359, 1232-1237.

Research Methods

Traditional experimental methods may not be applicable to the study of war, ethnopolitical conflict, and large-scale human rights violations. Thus, research methods courses should include field methodologies such as in-depth interviewing, ethnographic research methods, and oral histories. Examples of these methodologies can be taken from the literature on war, human rights, torture, and ethnopolitical conflict.

Bales, K. (1999). Disposable people: New slavery in the global economy.  Los Angeles: University of California Press. Includes a chapter on methods used for this research.

Social Psychology

The history of social psychology is linked to attempts to understand the Holocaust. Thus, many topics lend themselves to discussion. At the forefront are topics related to stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination, obedience to authority, conformity, social-role theory, groupthink, moral exclusion, diffusion of responsibility, bystander behavior, altruistic behavior, in-group/out-group behavior, and group dynamics. Multiple examples of the impact of each of these can be examined through analysis of genocide and other forms of mass violence.    

Bar-Tal, D. (1990). Causes and consequences of delegitimization: Models of conflict and ethnocentrism. Journal of Social Issues, 46, 65-81.

Kressel, N. (2002). Mass hate: The global rise of genocide and terror. New York: Plenum Press.

Miller, A. G. (Ed.). (1999). Perspectives on evil and violence [Special issue]. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 3(3).

Opotow,  S. (Ed.) (1990). Moral exclusion [Special issue]. Journal of Social Issues, 46(1).

Sabini, J. P., Silver, M., Lifton, R. J., Kelman, H. C., Hamilton, V. L., & Fairbank, J. K. (1993). Political psychology of destructive obedience and genocide.  In N. J. Kressel (Ed.), Political psychology: Classic and contemporary readings (pp. 185-245). New York: Paragon House.

Staub, E. (1999). The origins and prevention of genocide, mass killing, and other collective violence. Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology, 5, 303-336.

Additional Course Information

Altruism and Aggression: We live in a violent society. In fact, it is virtually impossible to pick up a daily newspaper, leaf through a magazine, or listen to the evening news without learning that some act of violence has occurred. Yet, in the midst of this epidemic of violence, we still hear about instances of altruism – helping behavior. How is it that our species can be so destructive one instant and so truly kind and helpful in another. The events surrounding 9-11 provide an unfortunate case point. The resultant carnage was staggering. However, equally as stunning was the outpouring of kindness. The duality of human behavior is perplexing. Is our species inherently good or evil?

During the course of the semester we will explore the duality of our species. First, we will examine aggression. Specifically, why do people aggress and what steps can be taken to prevent or control this destructive behavior? Topics to be covered include child abuse and physical punishment, ethnic- and racially based violence, terrorism, antisocial personalities (i.e., psychopath), sexual aggression, spousal abuse, drugs and aggression, and the media's impact on violence.

Second, we will explore the conditions that lead to helping behavior. We will discuss the role of empathy, gender, race, and attractiveness in bystander intervention. Theoretical issues will be debated during the class. For example, is there such a thing as true altruism – helping without regard to potential rewards? Or do we primarily help due to the conscious or unconscious desire to achieve a reward (e.g., praise, money, and esteem).

 Psychology of Peace and Conflict: This seminar on peace and conflict employs an interdisciplinary perspective to examine the causes of conflict and violence and the ways to resolve, manage, and control both violent and nonviolent conflicts at all levels: a) international, b) intergroup, and c) interpersonal.

This course is intended to provide students with information integrating theory and research on international, intergroup, and interpersonal conflict and direct approaches to conflict resolution such as negotiation, mediation, and facilitation.

The syllabus and a more detailed course description for this course can be found on the Project Syllabus website: http://www.lemoyne.edu/OTRP/projectsyllabus.html#peace

Psychosocial Perspectives on Terrorism
:  On September 11, 2002 many of us in the United States experienced for the first time the effects of terrorism. Terrorism is not a new phenomenon and many researchers have been struggling to understand the root causes and effects of terrorism. In this class, we will examine the psychosocial roots and impact of terrorism. We will examine the "why" of terrorism. Are terrorists psychopaths? Are terrorists just inherently evil? Or is the issue much more complex than this, particularly when we take into consideration a variety of partisan perspectives? Within this context, we will examine the various types of terrorism such as religious, state-sponsored, and individual acts of terrorism.

During the class we will also examine the impact of terrorism on many levels from the individual to national level. We will discuss topics related to the personal experience of trauma due to terrorism, such as normal emotional reactions to personal attack, PTSD, grief, coping, and the challenge to just world thinking. On a group level we will examine broader issues such as stereotyping, in-group/out-group behaviors, moral exclusion, displacement of aggression, nationalism, propaganda, and dehumanization.

The syllabus and a more detailed course description for this course can be found on the Project Syllabus website: http://www.lemoyne.edu/OTRP/projectsyllabus.html#peace

Annotated Bibliography

The annotated bibliography below is largely culled from the following resources that are available for free download through the Office of Teaching Resources in Psychology.  Note that both of these resources are currently undergoing revision and update.  Check back to the web site listed below for new documents.

Incorporating Genocide, Ethnopolitical Conflict, and Human Rights Issues Into the Psychology Curriculum: Informational Resources (2000), Linda M. Woolf, Webster University. This 27-page document contains two annotated bibliographies of materials on genocide, ethnopolitical conflict, and human rights issues written from a psychosocial perspective. The first bibliography includes major journal articles, book chapters, books, and Internet resources on these issues organized by topic. The second bibliography is comprised of reference materials for background information and further study. In addition, there is an annotated list of relevant journals.

Incorporating Genocide, Ethnopolitical Conflict, and Human Rights Issues Into the Psychology Curriculum: Instructional Resources (2000), Linda M. Woolf, Webster University. This 32-page document consists of resource materials for developing whole courses and lectures on genocide, ethnopolitical conflict, and human rights issues. For incorporating specific topics into existing courses, lecture suggestions and selected references are given. For developing and revising whole courses, sample syllabi are provided. In addition, lists of relevant videotapes, Web sites, Internet discussion lists, and professional organizations are included.

Both can be found for free download at: http://www.lemoyne.edu/OTRP/teachingresources.html#diversity

Good General Resources

Bourke, J. (1999). An intimate history of killing: Face to face killing in 20th century warfare. New York: Basic Books.
An examination of the intimate act of killing during wartime. Weaves historical analysis and scholarship with writings of soldiers (i.e., diaries, memoirs, and letters).  Most noted for its premise that pleasure and sexual gratification may play a role in killing for some individuals. Also includes unique chapters that focus on women and war, training men to kill, war crimes, and the return to civilian life.
Bunker, B. B., Rubin, J. Z., & Associates. (1995). Conflict, cooperation, & justice: Essays inspired by the work of Morton Deutsch. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
This collection of essays represents a tribute to social psychologist Morton Deutsch.  Sponsored by the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI), it includes essays concerning the three major areas of Deutsch’s work: conflict, cooperation, and justice.  Chapter 2 is especially useful in the delineation of various issues involved in conflict analysis.  Essays include the application of principles to a broad range of contexts from interpersonal to international and from schools to the work place.
Cancian, F. M., & Gibson, J. W. (1990). Making war, making peace: The social foundations of violent conflict.  Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.
Textbook consists of 48 readings concerning the social and cultural causes of peace and war. Covers a  broad range of topics including inequality, perspectives on the peace movement, and modern military strategies.
Carnegie Commission on Preventing Deadly Conflict. (1997). Preventing deadly conflict: Executive summary of the final report. New York: Carnegie Corporation.
Outline of proposed steps and interventions involved in preventing genocide and deadly conflict.
Chang, E. C. (Ed.). (2000). Optimism and pessimism: Implications for theory, research, and practice. Washington, D. C.: American Psychological Association.
Text contains sixteen essays that discuss the interplay between optimism and pessimism. Cultural, biological, and psychological antecedents of optimism and pessimism are explored. Practical implications for therapy are also included. This text is an ideal choice to balance out any discussion of positive psychology.
Chirot, D., & Seligman, M. (Eds.). (2001). Ethnopolitical Warfare: Causes, Consequences, and Possible Solutions. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association.
Edited text published by APA with information concerning ethnicity and nationalism as well as the group violence, psychosocial assistance, social psychology and intergroup conflict, and the psychology of group identification.  This excellent resource is divided into five sections beginning with theories of nationalism and ethnicity.  The book then extends to discussions of the major genocides of the twentieth century, chapters focused on ethnopolitical conflicts that stopped short of genocide, and analyses of limited to partially contained instances of ethnopolitical conflict.  The chapters in the final section of the text contain various psychosocial theories of conflict and potential solutions. An impressive list of contributors from each area of research.
Christie, D. J., Wagner, R. V., & Winter, D. D. (Eds.). (2001). Peace, conflict, and violence: Peace psychology for the 21st century. Upper Saddle River, NJ:  Prentice-Hall.
Excellent text highlighting the many facets of peace psychology. The text is divided into four main sections. The first section includes chapters concerning direct violence examined from a psychological perspective.  Topics range from an analysis of intimate violence to a discussion concerning weapons of mass destruction.  The second section addresses issues involved in structural violence such as social injustice and globalism. The last two sections concern a broad spectrum of issues related to peacemaking and peacebuilding. A must for anyone interested in the topic of peace psychology.
Danieli, Y. (Ed.) (2002). Sharing the front line and the back hills: International protectors and providers: Peacekeepers, humanitarian aid workers and the media in the midst of crisis. Amityville, NY: Baywood Publishing.
Addresses the needs of all of those involved in working towards peace as well as providing aid in areas of conflict. Important work for anyone for policymakers, mental health practitioners, United Nation peacekeepers, workers within NGOs and other humanitarian aid organizations, and educators.
De Jong, J. (Ed.) (2002). Trauma, war, and violence: Public mental health in socio-cultural context. New York: Kluwer Academic.
Provides analyses of various mental health needs and programs by psychologists from around the globe.  Focuses particularly on the needs of those who live in areas of extreme conflict, refugee camps, intense poverty, or where human rights are routinely violated.  
Fellman, G. (1998). Rambo and the Dalai Lama: The compulsion to win and its threat to human survival. Albany, NY:  State University of New York Press.
Part of the SUNY Series, Global Conflict and Peace Education. Blends psychology, sociology, history, and peace studies in an analysis of current cultures based largely on conflict. Through a mixture of scholarship and anecdotal evidence, Fellman proposes a paradigm shift from an adversarial paradigm to one based on mutuality, cooperation, and caring. Highly readable, this text serves as a good introduction for students to the concepts of conflict, nonviolence, and mutuality.
Fisher, R. J. (1997). Interactive conflict resolution. Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press.
Describes the process of interactive conflict resolution as a means of peacebuilding. Interactive conflict resolution involves third party facilitation of dialogue between non-official representatives of groups engaged in conflict. The book begins with chapters discussing the work of three pioneers in the use of the interactive conflict resolution method. This is followed by discussion examining the various methods and concerns related to the use of these methods of peacebuilding in cases of protracted conflict.
Fisher, R., Schneider, A. K., Borgwardt, E., & Ganson, B. (1997). Coping with international conflict: A systematic approach to influence in international negotiation. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
A good introductory text for students interested in international conflict. Includes case studies that introduce concepts of negotiation, partisan perceptions, problem solving, and conflict resolution. Provides a systematic method for developing a focused strategy aimed at peacebuilding within a specific conflict situation.
Frank, J. D. (1988). Sanity and survival in the nuclear age: Psychological aspects of war and peace. Lanham, MD: University Press of America.
Discusses the biological, psychological, and social factors underlying war and peace. Also discusses the danger of these factors in light of advanced weaponry.
Gerrity, E., Keane, T. M., & Tuma, F. (Eds.) (2001). The mental health consequences of torture. Bethesda, MD: National Institute of Mental Health.
This edited text provides an excellent overview of a broad range of topics related to the subject of torture.  The text is divided into five sections and begins with introductory chapters highlighting a discussion of torture from a survivor's perspective and an overview of the research.  This is followed by chapters addressing various conceptual models (e.g. psychosocial and economic) used in the understanding of torture.  The middle two sections concern the use of torture during war and in relation to social violence (e.g. homicide and domestic violence).  The text concludes with chapters focusing on various clinical issues related to work with torture survivors.
Gilbert, D. t., & Fiske, S. T., & Lindzey, G. (Eds.). (1998). The handbook of social psychology (4th ed), Vol. 2. Boston: McGraw-Hill.
This edited text contains several notable review chapters including: Altruism and Prosocial Behavior (Chapter 23), Aggression and Antisocial Behavior (Chapter 24), Social Conflict (Chapter 27), Social Justice and Social Movements (Chapter 30), and Social Psychology and World Politics (Chapter 35). While there is no peace psychology chapter, each of the aforementioned sections can provided useful information.
Grossman, D. (1995). On killing: The psychological cost of learning to kill in war and society. New York: Little, Brown, and Company.
Discusses the inhibitions of individuals towards killing and the need by the military to train soldiers to kill.  Provides information regarding the military training process and notes similarities to the use of video games and violent media exposure in the United States. Discusses the traumatic effect of killing on soldiers during wartime.
Kecmanovic, D. (1996). The mass psychology of ethnonationalism. New York: Plenum Press.
Examines the sociopsychological and anthropological forces underlying nationalism or ethnonationalism.  Addresses factors that foster the increase in nationalism and enable individuals to commit acts that would be otherwise unacceptable against other groups.  
Kressel, N. (2002). Mass hate: The global rise of genocide and terror. New York: Plenum Press.
One of the few texts to address the psychosocial roots of genocide and mass violence. Underlying the entire text is the question, “Why mass hate?”  With this question in mind, Kressel examines four instances of mass violence in depth:  ethnic cleansing in Bosnia, violence associated with Muslim extremists in New York, the Rwandan genocide, and the Holocaust.  The book includes two significant chapters that synthesize and critique the research on situational and personality factors as related to actions of mass violence and terror. Text first published in 1996 has been revised and updated to include information  and analysis related to the attacks on the United States of September 11, 2001.
Kurtz, L. R., & Turpin, J. (1998). Encyclopedia of violence: Peace and conflict. San Diego, CA: Academic Press.
A three-volume encyclopedia composed of articles written by over 200 scholars. Excellent resource for students and researchers examining work outside their main area of study.  Would make an excellent addition to the reference section of any library.
Langholtz, H. J. (Ed.). (1998). The psychology of peacekeeping. Westport, CT: Praeger.
Excellent text compiling contributions related to topics of peacekeeping, peacemaking, and peacebuilding. Topics range from prevention to post-conflict reconstruction and reconciliation. Includes chapters not commonly covered in other texts such as peacekeeper personnel selection and training, psychological concerns of peacekeepers and humanitarian workers, and the psychological consequences of landmines.
Long, W. J., & Brecke, P. (2003). War and reconciliation: Reason and emotion in conflict resolution. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Highlights the importance of the reconciliation process in the development of sustainable peace following civil and international conflict. Through the use of nineteen case studies, the authors systematically analyze the role that reconciliation can play in the restoration of social order.
Salomon, G., & Nevo, B.  (Eds.) (2002). Peace education: The concept, principles, and practices around the world. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
An important book for anyone interested in peace education.  Provides important discussions related to the concept, underlying principles, and international practice of peace education.  Also provides an overview of the current research.  
Schellenberg, J. A. (1996). Conflict resolution: Theory, research, and practice. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.
Represents a blend of theory, review of the research, and case studies. Text is divided into three main sections.  The first section contains a good chapter concerning research methodology in the study of conflict resolution.  The second section outlines various theories of conflict including an examination of internal psychological characteristics, social processes, and social-structural processes. The final section outlines five methods of conflict resolution practice including coercion, negotiation and bargaining, adjudication, mediation, and arbitration. Each chapter is discussed within the context of a specific case study.
Schwebel, M. (Ed.). (1998). Peace by forceful means? [Special issue]. Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology, 4(2).    
An important contribution to the literature. Grapples with the difficult question of whether in our violent world, force is necessary as a mechanism to maintain peace. This issue begins with an article by Ralph White that evaluates twelve examples of the use of force by the United States and critiques their effectiveness. This opening article is followed by commentaries evaluating White’s arguments.
Smith, M. B. (1999). Political psychology and peace: A half-century perspective. Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology, 5, 1-16.
Overview, analysis, and speculations concerning fifty years of peace and political psychology.
Snyder, C. R., & Lopex, S. J. (Eds.). (2001). The handbook of positive psychology. New York: Oxford University Press.
This edited text is devoted to providing a forum for a more positive view of the human condition. This comprehensive reference source is an excellent starting point if you are interested in infusing aspects of positive psychology into your lectures.
Strozier, C., & Flynn, M. (Eds.). (1998). Genocide, war, and human survival. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.
The text’s essays are divided into three sections: Hiroshima and America, genocide and mass violence, and witnessing. Although much of this volume is clearly political and historical, several essays are of value to psychologists. For example, Gerber’s  “We must hear each other’s cry: Lessons from Pol Pot Survivors,”  Simon’s “Can There be a Psychoanalysis Without a Political Analysis?” and Kai Erikson’s correspondence with and tribute to his father Erik concerning the dangers of social speciation are relevant to the discipline of psychology. The text was organized originally to serve as a tribute to the work of Robert Lifton.
Suedfeld, P. (Ed.). (1990). Psychology and torture. New York: Hemisphere.
Excellent collection of essays concerning the nature and effects of torture as well as psychology’s response to issues of torture. Addresses the issue from multiple vantage points including the effects of torture and process of therapeutic intervention, the perpetration of torture and the processes involved in becoming a torturer, and psychology’s role in fighting to abolish torture. Includes a disturbing chapter that presents the argument of justifiable torture in limited situations.
Tetlock, P. E. (1997). Psychological perspectives on international conflict and cooperation. In D. F. Halpern & A. E. Voiskounsky (Eds.), States of mind: American and post-Soviet perspectives on contemporary issues in psychology (pp. 49-76). Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
Scholarly psychological analysis of the politics of conflict within and between states.
Worchel, S., & Simpson, J. A. (Eds.). (1993). Conflict between people & groups: Causes, processes, and resolutions. Chicago: Nelson-Hall.
A collection of articles concerning interpersonal, intergroup, and international conflict. Includes discussion of U.S. and U.S.S.R. conflict, negotiations in Poland, Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the relationship of YinYang theory and conflicts

Altruism and Aggression Resources

Barash, D. P. (2001). Understanding violence. Needham Heights, MA: Allyn and Bacon.
The text represents a truly multidisciplinary approach to understanding aggression. The author has compiled some key readings on aggression from individuals in biology, psychology, sociology, anthropology, political science, and criminology. Selections are appropriate for undergraduates. An excellent supplement for an aggression course.
Baron, R. A., & Richardson, D. R. (1994). Human aggression (2nd ed.). New York: Plenum Press.
The first edition was a classic. The second edition continues the tradition of excellence. This text provides a very thorough summary of the aggression research. All the major perspectives are discussed (i.e., biological, cognitive, developmental, personality, and social). Unfortunately, the text is getting dated. In addition, the text may be best suited for graduate studies. However, it is an excellent reference source.
Batson, C. D. (1991). The altruism question. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
The text explores whether helping behavior is driven by solely altruistic or egoistic motivation? In this text the author reports a series of experiments that support Batson's theory of altruistic motivation. Very good reference piece. Nice contrast to the egoistic perspective.
Berkowitz, L. (1993). Aggression: Its causes, consequences, and control. New York: McGraw-Hill.
This text is a well-written overview of aggression that is appropriate to an upper division undergraduate class. The focus is primarily on experimental research conducted in this area of inquiry. The only problem with the text is its age. Instructors may need to supplement the text with more current research.
Englander, E. K. (1997). Understanding violence. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
Short text provides an introduction to aggression. Writing level is appropriate to undergraduate courses. Book is organized around common antecedents of aggression. Additional special topics such as drugs, gangs, sexual assault, abuse, and family violence are also presented. The text is somewhat brief in its coverage and therefore may need to be supplemented with additional readings when used in an upper division class.
 Geen, R. G. (1990). Human aggression. Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks/Cole.
Although this textbook is dated, it does provide a very concise summary of the major theoretical perspectives in aggression research. Could be used as a classroom textbook if it is supplemented with more current research.
Geen, R. G., & Donnerstein, E. (Eds.). (1998). Human aggression: Theories, research, and implications for social policy. San Diego: Academic Press.
This edited text summarizes current research findings regarding the antecedents of aggressive behavior. Chapters cover such topics as: Personality Influences, Methodology, Affect, Cognition, Self-Esteem, Psychoactive Drugs, Exposure to Media, Violence Towards Women, Sexual Aggression, and Temperature. Each chapter includes possible social implications. Due to its complexity, the text may be best suited for a senior seminar or graduate class. Regardless, it is a very good reference source.
Meadows, R. J. (2001). Understanding violence and victimization (2nd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Text primarily addresses victimization. Topics include: Family Violence, Victimization by Strangers, Workplace Violence, and School Violence. The author also presents a chapter on responding to criminal victimization. Although well written, the text does not cover the full range of aggressive behavior and would need to be coupled with a more broad-based text for use in the classroom.
Ozinga, J. R. (1999). Altruism. Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers.
The author argues that altruism in an inherent part of human nature with evolutionary value. Text provides an interesting perspective on the altruism question.
Renfrew, J. W. (1997). Aggression and its causes: A biopsychosocial approach. New York: Oxford University Press.
The text is well written and is appropriate for undergraduate courses. However, the material presented in the text is slanted towards non-human research than other aggression textbooks. Thus, one may need to supplement the text with additional readings to provide a more balanced approach to understanding aggression.
Schroeder, D. A., Dovidio, J. F., Penner, L. A., & Piliavin, J. A. (1994). The social psychology of helping and altruism. New York: McGraw-Hill.
This text provides such a broad overview of this research area. Four authors from different perspectives contributed to this book. The result is well written and appropriate for undergraduates.
Van Hasselt, V. B., & Hersen, M. (Eds.). (2000). Aggression and Violence: An Introductory Text. Needham Heights, MA: Allyn and Bacon.
This edited text provides a broad overview of aggression. The major perspectives are detailed as well as several sections devoted to specific forms of aggression (e.g., child abuse, elder abuse, homicide) and special topics (alcohol and drugs). The text is well written and is appropriate for an undergraduate upper division course.
Terrorism Resources

Hoffman, B. (1999). Inside terrorism. New York: Columbia University Press.
Excellent introduction to the topic of terrorism. Includes a broad discussion outlining the difficulties associated with defining terrorism. Most beneficial are the chapters discussing the myriad of motivations for terrorism, the symbiotic role of the media, targets and techniques for both terrorism and counterterrorism, and the internationalization of terrorism. The text is both theoretical and grounded in discussion of terrorist attacks (domestic and international) in the U.S. and other countries.
La Greca, A., Sivlerman, W. K., Vernberg, E. M., & Roberts, M. C. (Eds.) (2002). Helping children cope with disasters and terrorism. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Edited text designed address the myriad of crises that children may be exposed to including terrorism, natural disasters, human-made or technological disasters (e.g. auto accidents), and acts of violence.
 Maniscalco, P. M., & Christen, H. T. (2001). Understanding terrorism and managing the consequences. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
Text designed to familiarize the reader to a variety of critical responses to terrorist attacks. Designed for a broad range of readers from those in law enforcement to private industry. Not only addresses the immediate consequences of an attack with weapons of mass destruction (e.g. biological and chemical weapons) but also the impact that such attacks have on service delivery and society.  Includes simulations that can be used as class exercises.
Pyszczynski, T., Solomon, S., & Greenberg, J. (2002). In the wake of 9/11: The psychology of terror. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Provides an analysis of the attacks of September 11, 2001 and the response of those within the U.S. to those attacks within the context of terror management theory and research.
Reich, W., & Laqueur, W. (Eds.). (1998) Origins of terrorism: Psychologies, ideologies, theologies, states of mind. Washington, DC:  Woodrow Wilson Center Press.
Edited text that addresses a number of topics relevant to the study of the psychosocial roots of terrorism. Includes chapters concerning the motivation of terrorism, moral disengagement, hostage taking, and the psychopolitical bases of terrorism within democratic nations.
Stout, C. (Ed.). (2002). The psychology of terrorism. Westport, CT:Praeger
This is a four volume edited set. The first volume is designed to provide background information for general understanding of a broad range of terrorism topics from bioterrorism to the psychology of the terrorist. The second volume focuses on clinical issues and responses to terrorism. The third volume is divided into two sections that focus on placing terrorism within cultural and religious theoretical contexts. This four volume set concludes with articles addressing various aspects of response to terrorism as well as prevention. An important addition for any library.
Whitaker, D. J. (Ed.). (2001). The terrorism reader. New York: Routledge
Edited text examining terrorism from various approaches including psychological, sociological, legal, and ethical. Includes good discussion of the problems associated with counterterrorism. Includes numerous case studies.

Additional Information

Additional readings related to the study of peace and war can be found at http://www.webster.edu/~woolflm/peacereadings.html

Included are readings related to the following:

Peace, Conflict, and War
Refugees and Survivor's Concerns
Human Rights
Children and Adolescents
Educator Resources
Recommended Journals

Peace and conflict links - http://www.webster.edu/~woolflm/peacelinks.html

Division 48 (Society for the Study of Peace, Conflict, and Violence: Peace Psychology) - http://gsep.pepperdine.edu/~mstimac/Peace-Psychology.htm

Psychologists for Social Responsibility (PsySR) - http://www.psysr.org

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