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Wilfrid Laurier University Global Studies 232 Peace and Conflict Transformation: An Introduction Winter 2018 Essay Topics and Assignment Instructions 1. With reference to the emergence of the International Criminal Court and the growing emphasis on war crimes and crimes against humanity, assess the relationship between peace and justice. Choose one or two cases to examine the dilemmas and challenges to peace and justice that exist around international criminal trials of the ICC and/or other international rights courts. 2. Have the practices of contemporary peacekeeping evolved sufficiently to keep up with the changing nature of contemporary conflict? Draw on one or two case studies to develop your argument. 3. What are the opportunities and limitations of environmental peacebuilding? Compare and contrast at least two cases from the new field of environmental peacebuilding in order to assess its utility as a tool for building and strengthening peace. 4. Assess the role of non-violent activism during the Arab Spring. What lessons should be drawn from these experiences about the usefulness of non-violence as an instrument for political change? 5. With reference to current debates on non-proliferation and disarmament, discuss the core issues at stake in the Iranian nuclear dispute. Does the 2015 agreement, between Iran and the so-called P5+1 group of countries resolve these issues in a satisfactory way? 6. Assess the role of international mediation in two recent cases (not including the Israeli-Palestinian conflict) where outsiders have helped negotiate peace agreements to end armed conflicts. What do these cases tell us about the strengths and weaknesses of mediation as an instrument of peace and conflict transformation? 7. Discuss the role of force in contemporary conflict resolution. Is the notion of ‘peace enforcement’ a contradiction in terms or a legitimate strategy for addressing contemporary conflict? 8. Drawing both on the international intervention in Libya in 2011 and the more recent ‘non-intervention’ in Syria, assess the contemporary relevance of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) doctrine. 9. It is often suggested that finding sustainable solutions to conflict requires dealing with ‘root causes’. Discuss the root causes of one recent international or intrastate conflict. What might it take to address the root causes of conflict in this particular case? 10. With reference to one specific case study, discuss the role of contemporary citizen activism in advancing the cause of peace. In your view, can civil society movements make a difference in either avoiding war or creating peace, or are issues of war and peace best left to states and international organizations such as the United Nations? You may choose to write on a peace-related topic not listed here, but you must first have your topic approved by the course director. Since this is a research essay, you should ensure that you use a minimum of eight (8) academic/scholarly sources for your final paper, in addition to any non-academic sources you may use (websites, newspaper and magazine articles, etc.). At least 3 of these academic sources must be books or chapters from books. Essay Outline: A three-page essay outline (to include a draft outline, thesis statement, and brief annotated bibliography) is due Tuesday, February 27th, by 11:59pm. The outline is only to be submitted in electronic format (Word, PDF, or RTF) in the dropbox in MLS. The essay outline must use a minimum of 5 academic, peer-reviewed sources, 3 of which must be books or book chapters. The outline will be three pages long. Page 1 will discuss the research question, the rationale for that question, provide a working thesis, and lay out an outline of the essay’s broad sections. This should be done in about ¾ of a page. The remainder of the outline will be an annotated bibliography of at least 5 peer-reviewed sources, organized alphabetically. For each annotation entry, you should answer the following questions: 1) What is the thesis of the source? 2) How does the source speak to your research question(s)? 3) What evidence or arguments does the author(s) use to prove the thesis, including sub-arguments? 4) How convincing is the evidence? Are there problems with the author’s argument? See the sample outline, and instruction information about doing an annotated bibliography in the assignment folder on MLS. Not everything that is noted as necessary for the annotated entries in the additional guidance material is necessary to include. Just answer the 4 questions above. You must use a minimum of 3 peer-reviewed books or book chapters for the outline and final essay. If the books appear in the WLU library catalogue, they are acceptable. The outline can be single-spaced, 12 point font, and should include a title page with relevant information. You are welcome to use APA, or Chicago Manual style for your citations, and either intext parenthetical citations ( ), footnotes, or endnotes are fine. I expect the citations to have no errors. Check the style guides for instructions on how to cite different source types. The Chicago Manual is available in its entirety, in electronic format, from the WLU library catalogue. Final Essay: The final essay is due on Wednesday, March 28th at 11:59pm in the MLS dropbox. The final essay should be no less than 10 double-spaced pages in length, 2.5cm margins (not including cover page and bibliography/work cited), and all relevant material should be properly cited in one of the styles above. Marks will be deducted for essays that do not meet the length requirements. The introduction should include the four elements required in the outline above: the research question, the rationale for that question, provide a working thesis, and lay out an outline of the essay’s broad sections. See essay rubric posted in assignment section of MLS course site.