The Concept of Everyday Peace

Peace as experience

Everyday peace is something people experience through their bodies, emotions, and relationships in their local environment.

Peace as Knowledge

Everyday peace is what ordinary people know about violence and peace through their embodied experiences.

Everyday Peace as Meaning

Everyday peace must be meaningful for the people who experience violence in their everyday life. It is the people themselves who define what is the meaning of everyday peace in their specific context.

Everyday Peace as Action

Everyday peace is the action of local people who address everyday violence in their community and/ or everyday relationships.

Everyday Peace as Human Rights

The concept of everyday peace is similar to that of human rights, as its aim is to sponsor and protect people’s dignity. However, while the human rights doctrine focuses on the institutional dimension, everyday peace does not require institutional recognition. Everyday peace is people framing and defending their own rights from below.

Everyday Peace as Resistance

Everyday peace action entails resisting everyday forms of violence and/ or transforming structures of power that reproduce them.

Everyday Peace as Positive Peace

The concept of ‘positive peace’ introduced by Galtung suggests that peace ought to be more than the absence of direct violence. In people’s everyday experiences, the distinctions between different forms of violence  – direct violence, political violence, structural violence, domestic violence, sexual violence, etc – are often blurred. The formal end of a war is usually not followed by an end of everyday violence, and everyday violence often takes place in times of ‘peace’. Therefore, from an everyday perspective, peace is necessarily more than the absence of a violent conflict.

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