What's Happening

IMPACT: IMAGINING TOGETHER
Platform for Arts, Culture and Conflict Transformation

Designing a university-based infrastructure for the field

IMPACT logo


New Report-
"Imagine IMPACT: An emerging strategy to strengthen the arts, culture, and conflict transformation ecosystem"
impact report


Call for Papers- Creative Approaches to Transitional Justice: Contributions of Arts and Culture
2020 Special Issue, International Journal of Transitional Justice
Deadline: July 1
Guest Editor: Cynthia Cohen
View the full flyer
creative approaches

Newsletter

Sign up to receive updates about the Peacebuilding and the Arts program and the Acting Together project.

Highlights

First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis (FAC) 2019
Deadline to apply: May 31
Training: Nov 11 - Dec 5
fac


Youth Opportunity: Join the National Young Artists Summit 2019 Planning Team
Deadline to apply: June 3
nyas


Call for Applications: National / International Theatre Practitioners
Deadline to apply: June 5, 1pm GMT
Theatre Peace Building Academy
The Playhouse, Derry-Londonderry
Northern Ireland & the Border Counties of Ireland
playhouse logo


Fly By Light National Training Program hosted by One Common Unity
July 15 - 19
Washington D.C.
OCU


Naila and the Uprising
PBS Special starting March 25, 2019
Naila


Featured News from the Field Theme: "The Impact of Authoritarian Regimes on Artistic Freedom and Expression"


Songbook: Let’s Make a Better World: Stories and Songs by Jane Sapp
*Purchase Now!*
songbook
And listen to the related podcast series.


Sarah Terrazano wins Academy of American Poets Prize


A Reflection on Ebony Axis
By Sarah Nzisabira
ebony


Past News from the Field Theme: "Artists Respond to Climate Change"

Past News from the Field Theme: "Creative Reflections on Human Migration"


JPSFiction
Creative Ecofiction
jps

Professor Cynthia Cohen Solves the World's Problems with Creativity
The Brandeis Hoot
hoot


"Arts and Building Peace: The Basics and Envisioning the Future"
Essay by Cynthia Cohen
Peace in Progress Magazine
icip


Interview with Lee Perlman about the
book “But Abu Ibrahim, We’re Family!”
Abu

Read more News from the Field.

Acting Together Documentary

holding hands

Watch the preview!


Find "Acting Together" screenings near you.

Exploring the contributions of arts and culture to peace


Welcome to Peacebuilding and the Arts, a program of the International Center for Ethics, Justice, and Public Life at Brandeis. This website is for artists, cultural workers, coexistence practitioners, peacebuilding scholars, and all who are interested in how the arts and cultural traditions can be crafted to bridge differences, mediate conflicts, and contribute to peace.

We collaborate with artists who work in divided communities, supporting them to reflect on, document, and strengthen their practice. The lessons from these collaborations are accessible through publications, trainings, courses, and this virtual resource center. Read more about why we need creative approaches to peacebuilding.

Sign up to receive our newsletter, Peacebuilding and the Arts NOW, and read the latest issue.




Featured News


Announcement: Appointment of Toni Shapiro-Phim

castThe Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts and The Interdisciplinary Minor in Creativity, the Arts, and Social Transformation (CAST) at Brandeis University are delighted to announce the appointment of Toni Shapiro-Phim as Assistant Director of the Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts (outside the tenure track) and Associate Professor of Creativity, the Arts, and Social Transformation. Beginning fall semester 2019, Professor Shapiro-Phim will co-chair the CAST minor, offer its core course (CAST 150b), develop two new CAST-designated courses, and support the program in Peacebuilding and the Arts. Read the full announcement.


Report:
Imagine IMPACT: An emerging strategy to strengthen the arts, culture, and conflict transformation ecosystem

​Developed by​ Armine Avetisyan, Cynthia Cohen, Emily Forsyth Queen, and Toni Shapiro-Phim
April 2019

Read the report overview.

impact reportGreetings!

Welcome to the Imagining Together Platform for Arts, Culture and Conflict Transformation (IMPACT), a worldwide, values-driven collaboration to design and activate strategies to strengthen the arts, culture and conflict transformation ecosystem (acct). This ecosystem includes individuals and organizations working on the international stage and in local neighborhoods - sometimes at great risk - creating festivals and crafting policies, documenting practices and developing theories, enlivening communities and building bridges across differences. In this ecosystem, we imagine and embody a more just, more vibrant, less violent world.

The grand challenges confronting humanity – climate change, growing inequalities, wars and legacies of past wars, displacement, the rise of authoritarian regimes, political and social polarization, and more - call for urgent creative attention beyond the linear, rational approaches that have proved insufficient and often counter-productive. The acct ecosystem addresses these challenges in distinct, constructive, transformative ways. With investment and support, this ecosystem could be even more effective.

As IMPACT’s writing team, we invite you to explore this report, which is grounded in real world examples and:

  • makes the case for the power of arts and culture to transform conflict
  • summarizes learning from exchanges - with hundreds of artists, peacebuilders, scholars, funders,policymakers, and others - about the strengths of the acct ecosystem and the challenges it faces
  • advocates for a platform to support the acct ecosystem
  • proposes an emerging platform: a web of teams crafting virtual and in person spaces where knowledge can be shared, ethical dilemmas can receive sustained attention, advocacy strategies can be developed and advanced, risks of harm can be minimized, and relationships of reciprocity can be formed

Based on the sense of urgency and commitment of diverse and remarkable leaders directly involved with IMPACT, we are experimenting with a platform designed for distributed leadership and coherence, flexibility and stability, accountability and credibility.

However you are connected to the ecosystem, whether as an artist, cultural worker, scholar, conflict transformation practitioner, educator, diplomat, activist, policymaker, funder, or friend, we hope that this report engages your imagination and inspires action. IMPACT is still very much in process, attuned to emerging possibilities. We are eager for your suggestions, participation, and support.

Armine, Cindy, Emily, and Toni
The Imagine IMPACT Writing Team

Read the report overview.


Read the full report.

 

IMPACT: IMAGINING TOGETHER
Platform for Arts, Culture and Conflict Transformation

Designing a university-based infrastructure for the field

IMPACT

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation is supporting an 18-month planning process to design an infrastructure that will leverage university-based programs and cultural institutions to support practice, policymaking, research and teaching in the field.

IMPACT has established a very important long-term partnership with The International Community Arts Festival (ICAF), rooted in the shared belief in the power of art to contribute to a safer, more equitable, and more just world. 

Person writing on white board. Credit: ICAF

Photo credit: ICAF

ICAF is the largest and most prominent community arts festival in the world, fostering a growing network of worldwide community artists, arts organizations, scholars and social workers. Between festivals, ICAF organizes artist-in-residence programs, international summer schools, and acts as a partner for different international projects within the field of community arts and participatory arts.

Read more.      

Learn more about IMPACT: Imagining Together.



Call for Papers: Creative Approaches to Transitional Justice: Contributions of Arts and Culture

2020 Special Issue, International Journal of Transitional Justice
Deadline for submissions: July 1, 2019
IJTJ



Guest Editor:
Cynthia Cohen, director of the Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts at Brandeis University’s International Centre for Ethics, Justice and Public Life, US.

creative approaches

The International Journal of Transitional Justice invites submissions for its 2020 Special Issue, Creative Approaches to Transitional Justice: Contributions of Arts and Culture, to be guest edited by Cynthia Cohen, director of the Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts at Brandeis University’s International Centre for Ethics, Justice and Public Life, US.

Learn more.


Minor at Brandeis: 
Creativity, the Arts, and Social Transformation

CASTDo you want to combine your passion for social change with your creative talents?

Do you want to explore how can we join our stories together to create more justice in our communities and around the world?

Do you believe in the power of the arts and want to learn more about how the arts can make a difference?

Join the minor in Creativity, the Arts, and Social Transformation! The Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts is proud to announce this new interdepartmental minor at Brandeis. The minor offers students the opportunity to explore theory and practice at the center of arts and culture, peace and justice, and creativity. It is designed for students in the arts who want to connect their creative talents to their concerns for social change, and for students in the humanities and social sciences to explore music, theater, literature and visual arts as resources for justice and peace.

Learn more about the minor.

Read an article about CAST in the Ethics Central newsletter.

Read more about the objectives, learning goals, and requirements for the minor. Read the description in the 2014-2015 list of courses (page 18). Students who are interested in signing up for the minor can email Jennifer Cleary or call 781-736-3377. SoA

Read an article about CAST 
by Cynthia Cohen
in Brandeis' State of the Arts Magazine 
Fall 2014 issue


With generous funding from the Max and Sunny Howard Memorial Foundation, the minor will sponsor grants for faculty research and creative projects, and host conversations and events that will invite affiliated students and faculty into an interdisciplinary community of inquiry. We also express gratitude to Naomi Sinnreich P '13 for her vision and support.


"Acting Together" Documentary, Anthology & Toolkit

banner 
Acting Together documentary: “Acting Together on the World Stage
This remarkable 54 minutes documentary highlights courageous and creative artists and peacebuilders working in conflict regions, describes exemplary peacebuilding performances and offers tools for the creative transformation of violence. Order your copy now.

Acting Together anthology: “Acting Together: Performance and the Creative Transformation of Conflict is a two-volume work describing peacebuilding performances in regions beset by violence and internal conflicts.  Volume II focuses on the transformative power of performance in regions fractured by "subtler" forms of structural violence and social exclusion. Order your copy now.