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Peace Plays
ISBN: 978-82-300-0720-4
Year: 2010

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Peace Plays

Johan Galtung, Vithal Rajan, S.P. Udayakumar

Peace studies are usually presented as essays, in social science, political or philosophical-ethical discourses. This book is an experiment with drama as peace discourse, by authors versed in the other three. Drama is multi-angle and dialogical; it can be argued that so is the road to peace. The authors know something about peace, whether they can write drama is another matter. But those who do usually know very little about peace.

Johan Galtung, born 1930 in Oslo, Norway, lives in Spain, France, Japan and the USA, mainly engaged in mediation and research. He has so far published about 150 books and over 1500 articles on peace and related issues. 40 of his books have been translated into 33 languages, for a total of 134 book translation. He founded TRANSCEND: A Peace, Development and Environment Network, in 1993 and was founding rector of Transcend Peace University 2003-2007 and again from 2011 (see and

Vithal Rajan, born 1936 in Madras, now lives in Hyderabad, India. He has a PhD from the London School of Economics. He worked as a mediator for the church in Belfast; as faculty at The School of Peace Studies, University of Bradford, and as Executive Director, the Right Livelihood Award Foundation. He has founded several Indian NGOs. He is an Officer of the Order of Canada.

S. P. Udayakumar was born 1959 in Nagercoil, Tamil Nadu, on the southernmost tip of India, where he now lives with his wife and two sons. He has an M.A. in Peace Studies from Notre Dame University, USA, and a PhD in Political Science from the University of Hawaii. He is a farmer, peace researcher, teacher, author and anti nuclear activist.


Peace Plays

Johan Galtung

Vithal Rajan

S.P. Udayakumar

Table of Contents


The Cardplayers

A Political Drama in Three Acts

By Johan Galtung

The Spartan Conspiracy

A One Act Play

by Vithal Rajan Happens

A One Act Play

by S. P. Udayakumar



Peace is spoken in many languages. Like analytical, this is what peace is about. Learn it. Like forecasting, if you continue like this you will suffer the consequences. Be warned. Like remedy: speak: this is the narrow path to peace. Walk it. The dialects are numerous.

Drama is a very rich language family. There are elements of the three just mentioned. But then it is metaphorical; the author may take you to strange places. There is that of peace and there is not.

And it is dialogical, the author sees the place through many eyes and tongues and angles. An indispensable language, as complex as the subject matter. As opposed to description, prediction and prescription, singly or combined.

Art? As somebody said, "reality seen through a temperament". If temperament is evoked in the reader, then maybe. Anyhow, it so happens that the three of us had a penchant for using that language and the three plays found each other and told their authors to bring them together.

Peace plays, plays about peace, or peace playing itself out? All of that and more. Anyhow, Kumar is an Indian from Tamil Nadu, Vithal is a Canadian Indian living in Hyderabad, Johan carries the Norwegian passport of a country killing Afghans and tries to be a world citizen. We are all familiar with the three languages above, but felt the need for something more, something above.

We hope they give you some experience, maybe beyond learning, being warned and walking. Do write us what you felt. Unless you just think we should go back to school. We know that.

Much love to you all  

Johan, Vithal, Kumar


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