Sowing Sapient Superlatives: A Peace Linguist’s Checklist

EDUCATION, 4 Dec 2017

Francisco Gomes de Matos – TRANSCEND Media Service

Rhymed Reflections – A Forest of Ideas/Ideals

In today’s ever-challenging world, people are exposed to/asked to ask questions such as these:

Who is the most famous ……? Who is the most powerful……..? Who is the fastest…….? Who is the most innovative…..? 

Conspicuously missing from the huge repertoire of questions human beings can ask are those I would call Superlative-sapience-sowing questions. Here are some examples. Readers are invited to add their own, justify and discuss their additions, and reflect on how to enhance their questioning competence.

  1. Who are the most peaceful language users in……………..? What is their communicative peace competence like?
  2. Who are the most inspiring peacebuilding educators in………..? In what peacebuilding efforts do they excel? How?
  3. Who are the humblest peacebuilders in  ……………… (Workplace, school, government agency, etc.) ? How do they interact?
  4. Who are the authors of the most peaceful books globally available  multilingually ?How are they  selected ?
  5. Who are the most active promoters of sustainable peace in what organizations? Where? What do they do exemplarily?
  6. Who are the most courageous peacebuilding government leaders where? How do they implement peacebuilding diplomacy?
  7. Who are the best known   media professionals committed to global peace purposes? How do they show their commitment?
  8. Who are the most peaceful-life-enhancing researchers in what sciences / humanities?  What seeds of Peace sapience are they sowing? How?
  9. Who are the most illuminating advocates /appliers of global peace literacy? What have they been doing?
  10. Who in the local community, for instance, are contributing to nurturing the right to learn to ask questions with Peace sapience?


Francisco Gomes de Matos, Ph.D. is an applied peace linguist from Recife, Brazil. He has degrees in Languages, Law, and Linguistics. He is Professor Emeritus at the Universidade Federal de Pernambuco where he is active in the Dom Hélder Camara Human Rights Commission. He is one of the pioneers in Linguistic Rights (author of 1984 Plea for a Universal Declaration of Linguistic Rights) and in the emerging area of Peace Linguistics. Currently he is President of the Board, ABA Global Education ( He can be reached at


This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 4 Dec 2017.

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