A Grand Design for Peace and Reconciliation

A Grand Design for Peace and Reconciliation

Achieving Kyosei in East Asia

Edited by Yoichiro Murakami and Thomas J. Schoenbaum

Scholars from Japan and a range of other countries explore in this book the still-unfinished effort to achieve the reconciliation of old enmities left over from past wars in East Asia. They present concrete policy proposals for a ‘grand design’ of peace based on the Japanese concept of ‘kyosei’, a word roughly translated as ‘conviviality’. A positive peace through kyosei means not only the absence of violence, but also the amelioration of past injustices, exploitation and oppression. The diversity of disciplines represented in the volume—international law and politics, history, philosophy and theology – enrich the contributors’ search for an intellectually appropriate, practically transformative and viable grand theory of peace in the twenty-first century. Chapters address issues such as security in North–South conflict situations, foreign policy strategies for Japan, the perspective of comparative religions, and current skepticism for the possibility of peace and reconciliation. These insightful and compelling analyses will be of great interest to students and researchers of East Asia and the politics of peace in general.

Chapter 2: Is Grand Theory Possible Today?

Shin Chiba

Subjects: asian studies, asian law, law - academic, asian law, human rights, public international law, politics and public policy, human rights, international politics, international relations, terrorism and security


Shin Chiba 1. INTRODUCTION The International Christian University (ICU), Tokyo, Japan, has conducted a five-year Center of Excellence (COE) program entitled “Research and Education for Peace, Security, and Kyosei (Conviviality)”.1 We have named this research and educational program “comprehensive peace studies”. This is an interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary program comprising many different themes and projects, including narrowly defined peace research and Anzengaku (a Japanese project on security/safety studies launched by this volume’s co-editor, Yoichiro Murakami). The COE program also includes other peace projects that focus on international relations, international cooperation, international development education, gender studies, ecology, sustainable business administration and forestry, and intercultural communication. The COE program includes studies in the “safe space” in human psyche (clinical psychology); peace and kyosei education; peacebuilding and conflict resolution; the issue of war responsibility and reconciliation in East Asia; stable and cooperative international order; studies in peace movements and pacifism; and STS (science, technology and society). Our comprehensive program of peace studies is not merely comprehensive in its broad range of disciplinary and thematic coverage. Our program also hopes to provide a consistent, creative and relevant “grand theory” of peace, security and kyosei in an increasingly fragmented and destabilized world at the threshold of the twenty-first century. When one attempts to construct a grand theory in comprehensive peace studies, one must first examine whether or not a grand theory is even possible today. For today there is no consensus either in the field of human sciences or social...

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