1997 - 2000 Activities

After opening with a conference focused on religion and ecology, this period saw major consultations and conferences focused on supporting the creation of the Earth Charter. During this process, the Center worked closely with scholar Steven Rockefeller, who chaired the international Earth Charter Drafting Committee. Also participating in the Center's Earth Charter initiatives was peace scholar Elise Boulding. During this period, Dr. Boulding also co-convened, with Randall Forsberg, a "Conditions for Abolishing War" seminar series, which formed the basis of the Center's self-published book "Abolishing War" (1998). Later, the Center held an ambitious three-part conference series entitled “From War Culture to Cultures of Peace: Challenges for Civil Society.” This period also saw the publication of two BRC-developed books released in collaboration with established publishers: "Subverting Hatred: The Challenge of Nonviolence in Religious Traditions," edited by Daniel Smith-Christopher and published by Orbis Books, and "Buddhist Peacework: Creating Cultures of Peace," edited by David W. Chappell and published by Wisdom Publications.


February 21-22, 1997
Center hosts first session of three-part conference series entitled “Religion and Ecology: Forging an Environmental Ethic across Traditions.” Conference #1 focused on Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

Friday night speakers were:
Mary Evelyn Tucker, Bucknell University
Tim Weiskel, Harvard Seminar on Environmental Values
John Berthrong, Boston University School of Theology

Saturday speakers were:
Michal Smart, Camp Isabella Freedman
Roger Gottlieb, Worcester Polytechnic Institute (moderator)
Dieter Hessel, Program on Ecology, Justice and Faith
Jonna Higgins, Harvard Divinity School (moderator)
Nawal Ammar, Kent State University
Shahla Haeri, Boston University (moderator)
Steven Rockefeller, Middlebury College (wrap-up)
Mary Evelyn Tucker, Bucknell University (moderator)

March 7-8, 1997
Center hosts second session of Religion and Ecology conference series focusing on Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism.

Friday night speakers were:
Donald Swearer, Swarthmore College
Susan Darlington, Hampshire College
Mary Evelyn Tucker, Bucknell University

Saturday speakers were:
Vasudha Narayanan, University of Florida
Arvind Sharma, McGill University (moderator)
Stephanie Kaza, University of Vermont
Mary Ann Nelson, Massachusetts Department of Environmental Management (moderator)
Michael Tobias, University of Texas
Lewis and Meg Randa, Peace Abbey (moderators)
Charles Hallisey, Committee on the Study of Religion, Harvard University (wrap-up)
Christopher Queen, Division of Continuing Education, Harvard University (moderator)

April 4-5, 1997
Center hosts third and final session of Religion and Ecology Conference series. Conference #3 focuses on East Asian and Pacific religious traditions.

Speakers on Friday evening were:
Tu Weiming, Harvard University
John Berthrong, BU School of Theology (moderator)

Speakers on Saturday were:
John Grim, Bucknell University
Donald St. John, Moravian College (moderator)
Jordan Paper, York University
Michael LaFargue, UMass-Boston (moderator)
Richard Gardner, CSWR, Harvard University
Mary Evelyn Tucker, Bucknell University
Richard Clugston, Center for Respect of Life and Environment (wrap-up)
John Berthrong, Boston University (moderator)

June 14, 1997
Center hosts Earth Charter Consultation facilitated by Eileen Gannon and Carol Zinn of Global Education Associates as follow-up to Religion and Ecology Conference Series, forwarding input to Steven Rockefeller.

September 19, 1997
Center hosts “Women’s Consultation on the Earth Charter.”

Elise Boulding, Dartmouth College
Esmeralda Brown, NGO Steering Committee for the UN Commission on Sustainable Development
Susan Davis, Women’s Environment and Development Organization (WEDO)
Maximo Kalaw, Executive Director, Earth Council
Patricia Mische, Global Education Associates
Beatriz Schulthess, Indigenous Peoples Program, Earth Council
Soon-Young Yoon, former UN liaison for the 1995 NGO Forum on Women in Beijing

October 17, 1997
Center launches seminar series entitled “The Conditions for Abolishing War: Cultures and Institutions” with Elise Boulding and Randall Forsberg as presenters and several peace scholars and activists as discussants. A total of five seminars were conducted  between October 1997 and the end of February 1998. The results were later compiled into a book and published by the Center.

Presenters were:
Elise Boulding, professor emerita of sociology, Dartmouth College
Randall Caroline Forsberg, founder and director, Institute for Defense and Disarmament Studies (IDDS)

Discussants were:
Eileen Babbitt, international politics, Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University
Seyom Brown, international cooperation, Brandeis University
Carol Cohn, sociology and women's studies, Bowdoin College
Neta Crawford, political science, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Elmer Englstrom, IDDS volunteer consultant
Paula Gutlove, Institute for Resource and Security Studies
Barbara Hildt, president of Women's Action for New Directions (WAND)
Robert Irwin, author of Building a Peace System
Winston Langley, international relations, University of Massachusetts Boston
Eleanor LeCain, speaker and writer
Saul Mendlovitz, international law, peace and world order studies, Rutgers University
John Montgomery, international studies, Harvard University
Laura Reed, security studies, visiting scholar, MIT
Loyal Rue, religion and philosophy, Luther College
Appu Soman, diplomatic history
George and Eva Sommaripa, founding member of IDDS and peace activists
Barbara Sullivan, community activist
Virginia Swain, organizational consultant, co-founder of Center for Global Community and World Law
Gordon Thompson, executive director of Institute for Resource and Community Studies
Michael True, author of An Energy Field More Intense than War
Carlotta Tyler, international organization development consultant

October 30, 1997
Center hosts Third Annual Global Citizen Awards Ceremony.

Recipients were:
Oscar Arias Sanchez, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and former President of Costa Rica, who gave a talk entitled “The Need for New Ethics in the 21st Century.”
Randall Caroline Forsberg, Executive Director of the Institute for Defense and Disarmament Studies, who spoke on “Ending War: Thinking the Unthinkable.”

Introducers were:
Cora Weiss, International Representative, Peace Action; Vice President, International Peace Bureau
Joshua Cohen, Head, Department of Political Science, MIT

November 1997
Center publishes two booklets on Earth Charter:

1. “Buddhist Perspectives on the Earth Charter” containing foreword by Daisaku Ikeda and overview by Professor Steven Rockefeller with essays by:

Grace Burford, Prescott College
David W. Chappell, University of Hawaii
Susan Darlington, Hampshire College
Rita M. Gross, University of Wisconsin
Yoichi Kawada, Institute of Oriental Philosophy
Stephanie Kaza, University of Vermont
Sallie B. King, James Madison University
Donald K. Swearer, Swarthmore College

2. “Women’s Views on the Earth Charter” containing proceedings of September 19 consultation at the Center with introduction by Elise Boulding.


April 2-5, 1998
Center participates in concurrent annual conferences of the Peace Studies Association and the Consortium on Peace Research, Education and Development entitled “Peace Studies at 50: Nonviolence in Theory and Action" at Bethel College by sponsoring a plenary presentation by Randall Forsberg on “Building Policies and Institutes to End War” and facilitating a workshop on “The Earth Charter: Bringing Earth Ethics into the Peace Studies Curriculum.”

April 20, 1998
Center convenes day-long consultation on the Earth Charter, the International Covenant on Environment and Development, and Human Rights entitled “Practical Steps to Realize Environmental Justice: Drawing on 50 Years of Human Rights Developments.” Cosponsored by Global Education Associates and Center for Respect of Life and Environment. Co-conveners were Steven Rockefeller, professor of religion at Middlebury College, and Nicholas Robinson, professor of law at Pace University School of Law. Participants included:

Johanna Bernstein, The Earth Council
Elise Boulding, Dartmouth College, retired
Noel Brown, Friends of the United Nations
Richard Clugston, Center for Respect of Life and Environment
Clarence Dias, International Center for Law and Development
Robert Goldstein, Pace University School of Law
John Grim, Bucknell University
Stephen Kass, Carter, Ledyard & Milburn
Winston Langley, UMass, Boston
Rudolphus (Ruud) Lubbers, Tilburg University
Stephen Marks, Columbia University
Stephen Mills, Sierra Club
Patricia Mische, Global Education Associates
Neil Popovic, Heller Ehrman White & McAuliffe
Katherine Redford, EarthRights International
Sage Russell, American Association for the Advancement of Science
Mary Evelyn Tucker, Bucknell University
Soon-Young Yoon, Earth Times

August 17, 1998
Center holds lecture by Dr. Yoichi Kawada, director of the Institute of Oriental Philosophy, entitled “The Buddhist Outlook on Birth and Death.”

September 27-28, 1998
Working with Victor Kazanjian, the Center cosponsors event at Wellesley College entitled “Education as Transformation: Religious Pluralism, Spirituality, and Higher Education.”

October 8, 1998
Center holds Fourth Annual Global Citizen Awards Ceremony.

Young Seek Choue, founder and chancellor of Kyung Hee University in Korea, gave a talk called "Magna Carta of Global Civil Society."
Vito Perrone, director of teacher education at Harvard Graduate School of Education, gave a talk called "Our Continuing Imperative: Education for Peace and Social Justice."

Hazel Henderson, past recipient of GCA
Deborah Meier, author and school founder

Congratulatory remarks:
Joseph Verner Reed, UN Under Secretary-General

November 1998
Center publishes three new books, Subverting Hatred, Abolishing War, and an Earth Charter Studies Kit.

November 21-24, 1998
Center staff attends the American Academy of Religion (AAR) and hosts a publications booth focusing on “Religions, Values, Peace” and featuring three new books. Center staff also organized a reception informing scholars about the book, Subverting Hatred, and about the Wellesley College “Education as Transformation” project.  Presenters at reception were Dr. Daniel Smith-Christopher, editor of Subverting Hatred, and Wellesley College Dean Victor Kazanjian, who launched the project at Wellesley earlier in year.

December 2, 1998
Center holds Women’s Leadership Forum entitled “Creating Connections” planned together with a committee of Boston-area women’s policy organizations. Audience represented over 45 organizations. Keynote delivered by Ambassador Swanee Hunt with commentary by Marti Wilson-Taylor, president of the YWCA, Boston.

Co-planners were:
Center for Women in Politics and Public Policy, UMass Boston
Radcliffe Public Policy Institute, Radcliffe College
Simmons Institute for Leadership and Change, Simmons College
Wellesley Centers for Women, Wellesley College
Women and Public Policy Program, Harvard University
Women’s Action for New Directions (WAND)
Women’s Educational and Industrial Union (WEIU)


February 5-6, 1999
BRC hosts first in three-part conference series entitled “From War Culture to Cultures of Peace: Challenges for Civil Society.” Series co-conveners were Elise Boulding, professor of sociology, emerita, Dartmouth College and Paul Joseph, professor of sociology, Tufts University. Series facilitator was Brandeis University professor Gordon Fellman. Institutional collaborators were the Peace and Conflict Studies Program at Brandeis University, the Peace and Justice Studies Program at Tufts University, and the Peace and Justice Studies Program and the Office of Religious and Spiritual Life at Wellesley College. The first conference entitled “Creating Cultures of Peace: Family Life and Education,” included:

Friday Evening Keynote Panel: What is a Peace Culture?

Michael True, professor of English, Assumption College
Elise Boulding, Dartmouth College
Paul Joseph, Tufts University

Moderated by:
Winston Langley, professor international relations, UMass-Boston

Saturday morning panel: Cultures of Peace & Family Life

Lewis Randa, Peace Abbey, Sherbourne, MA
Betty Burkes, director, Montessori Paradise in Wellfleet, MA
Maria Guajardo Lucero, executive director, Assets for Colorado Youth

Moderated by Michael True

Followed by local grassroots initiatives presented by:
Lewis Randa, Stonewalk Project
Earl Phalen, (Bell) Foundation

Saturday afternoon panel: Cultures of Peace and the Schools

Alfie Kohn, author, Punished by Rewards and No Contest
Diane Levin, author, Remote Control Children? and Teaching Young Children in Violent Times
Linda Mizell, author, Think About Racism
Tri Phuong, Cambridge Youth Peace and Justice Corps

Moderated by Cathy Hoffman, Director, Cambridge Peace Commission

March 5-6, 1999
BRC hosts second in series of “From War Culture to Cultures of Peace” conferences, this time with a parallel peace camp. This second conference, entitled “Cultures of Peace in the Global Marketplace” included:

Friday Evening Keynote lecture entitled “Cultures of Peace and Economic Justice” by:

Gar Alperovitz, president, National Center for Economic and Security Alternatives, with a commentary by:
Dessima Williams, professor of sociology, Brandeis University, and moderated with a response by:
Harvey Cox, professor of divinity, Harvard Divinity School

Saturday morning panel: Micro Models of Peaceable Economics

Carol Grodzins, director of International Development Programs, JFK School, Harvard University
Patricia Walker, policy analyst on economic development in Sub-Saharan Africa
Gregory Watson, executive director, Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative

Moderated by
Frank Ackerman, environmental economist, Global Development and Environment Institute, Tufts University

Followed by local grassroots initiatives presented by:
Barbara Brandt, The Alliance for a Caring Economy
Jim Wallis, Call to Renewal and Jubilee 2000

Saturday afternoon panel: Macro Models of Peaceable Economics

Lucas Baker-Siroty, student and research associate, Brandeis University Sociology Department
Frank Ackerman, environmental economist, Global Development And Environment Insitute, Tufts University
Lucy Webster, executive director, Economists Allied for Arms Reducation
Charles Derber, professor of sociology, Boston College

With closing commentaries by Brandeis students Aliya Caler, Alex Winner, and Rachel Kadner.
And presentation by Peace Campers

March 26-27, 1999
BRC hosts third and final conference in series, “From War Culture to Cultures of Peace,” again with parallel peace camp. The third conference, entitled Practices of Peace in Religious Communities” included:

Friday evening keynote lecture entitled “Religions and Cultures of Peace” by Victor Kazanjian, dean of Religious and Spiritual Life at Wellesley College, with a commentary by Donna Bivens, Women’s Theological Center.

Saturday morning panel: Practicing Peacebuilding Locally

Jim Hill, SGI, Waltham
Zina Jacque, Union Baptist Church, Cambridge
Imam Taalib Mahdee, Masjid Al Quran, Dorchester
Harold White, Wellesley Friends Meeting

Moderated by:
Doris Hunter, Unitarian minister, co-chair of US Chapter of International Association of Religious Freedom

Local grassroots initiatives presented by:
Jacquelyn Smith-Crooks, The Interfaith Pilgrimage of the Middle Passage
Stephanie Spellers. Greater Boston Interfaith Organization

Saturday afternoon panel: Interfaith Initiatives Toward Peace

Anne Custer, Th.M. (cand.), Harvard University
David Chappell, professor of religion, University of Hawaii
Preminder N. (Bawa) Jain, The Interfaith Center of New York/The Temple of Understanding

Moderated by John Berthrong, associate dean, Boston University School of Theology

Joint Activity with Peace Campers, “Creating Human Sculptures of Peace, facilitated by Chandra Pieragostini & Howard Baker, Lemberg Children’s Center at Brandeis University, and Peace Camp Staff

November 1999
Wisdom Publications publishes Buddhist Peacework: Creating Cultures of Peace, developed by BRC in collaboration with editor, David Chappell, University of Hawaii.


April 28-29, 2000
BRC hosts women’s leadership forum entitled “Creating Connections 2000: Peace with Self, Sister, and Society,” cosponsored with 20-Boston-area women’s and youth groups.

Friday evening keynote by Jacqueline Maloney, coordinator of Education for Action at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Studies.

Saturday workshops chaired by women leaders including:

Susan Bailey, Wellesley Centers for Women
Aparna Vijayaraghavan, Radcliffe’s Public Policy Center
Elizabeth Sherman, UMass-Boston
Sayre Sheldon, founder of WAND

June 9, 2000
BRC hosts reception celebrating Elise Boulding’s new book, Cultures of Peace: The Hidden Side of History. Cosponsor: Coalition for a Strong United Nations (CSUN)

June 10, 2000
BRC hosts conference entitled “Working to Build a Culture of Peace and Nonviolence: Peace Is in Our Hands.” Cosponsor: CSUN. Participants include Vincent Harding, Iliff School of Theology, and Swanee Hunt, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.

August 5-12, 2000
BRC staff attend sixth international conference of the Society for Buddhist-Christian Studies entitled “Buddhism, Christianity, and Global Healing” at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington. BRC director gives plenary presentation on Buddhist contributions to drafting the Earth Charter with Mary Evelyn Tucker and Jay McDaniel, and co-chairs working group on “Buddhist and Christian Perspectives on the Earth Charter” as well as co-chairing, with Jay McDaniel, the week-long series of workshops entitled “Spirituality and the Earth Charter: Buddhist and Christian Approaches.” Workshop participants include:

John Cobb, Claremont School of Theology
Dr. A.T. Ariyaratne, president and founder of Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement in Sri Lanka
Sallie B. King, James Madison University
Mary Evelyn Tucker, Bucknell University
Sulak Sivaraksa, Thai Buddhist author and peace activist
Paul Knitter, Xavier University
Bill Aiken, Director of Public Affairs, SGI-USA

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