Brazier, Chris, Dinyer Godrej & Alan Hughes. PEACE. A New Internationalist Book to Go. 2005. New Internationalist publications. UK.

This is one of a series of small easy to pocket & carry books that also include Green Action & Political Animals. The New Internationalist is the global voice of inspiration and information for all of us in the work for peace and social justice; it produces an excellent magazine and many publications including The World Guide.

Peace is full of quotations from many lands & peoples – a bit heavy on men & USA presidents & generals but still it is a little gem and an excellent ethical gift for a person just starting out in the peace movement.

The photos and graphics are striking; my favourites are; the beaming faces of women in Burundi, great photos of historic demonstrations, a poignant scene of a woman in a Bosnian graveyard and the photo of Serb woman grieving during the NATO bombing with the stunning caption that that was the first major conflict with NO casualties on the winning side.

Some of the quotes are from ancient and historic texts from many cultures. Some are less known like the timely words of RH Tawney, “Militarism is the characteristic, not of an army, but of a society” and Aung San Suu Kyi who reminds us that, “the quintessential revolution is that of the spirit.”

When I spoke recently at an alternate armistice ceremony at the memorial to the Canadians who died in the Spanish civil war I quoted the words of Oscar Romero, remembering my visit to the 65 metre long wall of names of those who died in El Salvador’s civil war. The much revered priest said, just before his assassination, “…Peace is dynamism. Peace is generosity. It is right and it is duty.”

A pleasant part of our duty is to pass on images and words like those in Peace to new activists as a welcoming introduction to a culture of peace.

(New Internationalist Publications UK: www.newint.org)

Filed under Alan Hughes, Book Reviews, Chris Brazier, Dinyer Godrej