Imagine There’s No Countries . . .

Considering the Possibility and Practice of Global Citizenship

Week for Peace feat. Dr. Laura Nader

Posted by mayacu on February 23, 2009

Dr. Laura Nader, internationally renowned anthropologist and Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Berkeley since 1960, was the final keynote speaker on Friday for University of the Pacific’s “Week for Peace.” Her speech, titled “Peace and War: What the Rest Think of the West,” gave insight into historical and current outlooks on the “west” and the interactions between different governments, cultures, and peoples around the world. Dr. Nader emphasized that she did not expect the peoples of the world to ever unite in peace as one big, happy family, but she challenged everyone to at least peacefully coexist. She said, you do not have to like, agree with, or approve of your neighbors, but don’t kill them. It’s as simple as that. She questioned the utopian hope that someday the world would be free of war altogether, but she demanded that no matter what, it is a horrific and unnecessary part of war to kill civilians. Her lecture was poignant and humorous and, in the end, hopeful. Here she is, a 78 year old woman, still teaching and learning from different people around the world and encouraging everyone to be aware of others and accept them for who they are! She pointed out that we can only do what we can and that is our best. Every action, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant, somehow makes a difference. Why be a pessimist in such a world when being an optimist is really what breaks the norms and challenges us to see things in a different way? It’s easy to be pessimistic; it’s optimism that takes work and is more rewarding in the end. Dr. Nader provided an insightful perspective on issues around the world today and left those who attended her lecture with many interesting ideas to ponder and discuss about universal human rights, war and peace, and how we interact with and react to people we encounter everyday and people we will never meet.

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One Response to “Week for Peace feat. Dr. Laura Nader”

  1. mykela1 said

    Dr. Nader’s talk was so inspiring! Thank you so much for helping to put Week of Peace on, Maya!

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