What's Happening

Coexistence in the Aftermath of Mass Violence -New Book!

book review


Forces of Art: Perspectives from a Changing WorldNew Book!

An initiative of Prince Claus Fund, European Cultural Foundation and HIVOS

book cover


Opportunities for artists and cultural workers in January and February 2021



Open Call – MASARAT: Grants for artists and cultural initiatives

Apply by February 7, 2021!



Join: Creative Approaches to Transitional Justice Conversations Series

(in partnership with Acts of Listening LabCenter for Oral History and Digital Storytelling at Concordia University)

drawing of a tree


Songs of Resistance and Hope by Jane Wilburn Sapp

Encouraging voting on Instagram | Facebook 

In the vodcast, Jane Sapp offers specific songs to support the current demands for racial justice and explores how songs can energize the movement. #votedeis 





CAST Commitments, in Solidarity with Black Lives Matter

logo with letters


Relaunch of Acting Together on the World Stage Website - Multi-media educational initiative

an actor on the stage

Platform for Arts, Culture and Conflict Transformation

Designing an infrastructure for the field

Read more.



2019-2020 Annual Report: Creativity, the Arts and Social Transformation (CAST)

title page of a report




Read the latest issue of our newsletter, Peacebuilding and the Arts Now.

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



Buffer Fringe Performing Arts Festival in Nicosia, Cyprus

2020 theme - “Displacement: people, ideas and artistic practice”

 poster with an image of walking human figures



Featured News from the Field Theme:

"The Art of Getting Out the Vote in the United States"



"Creative Approaches to Climate Change"

animal sculpture 


Past News from the Field Theme:"Arts, Artists and Demands for Racial Justice"


"Navigating the Nexus of Arts and Peace" book authored by Carrie Herbert, Suyheang Kry, Raymond Hyma, Dona Park, and María Antonia Pérez

book cover


‘White Savior’ by internationally acclaimed playwright Catherine Filloux Premieres at Pygmalion Productions 
Read the press release for details. 

human face


The cultural mobilization of cities and local governments in the COVID-19 crisis

Exquisite Corps (42 choreographers, 1 dance)

Special Edition: "Creative Approaches to Transitional Justice: the Contributions of Art and Culture"
The International Journal of Transitional Justice
Guest edited by Dr. Cynthia Cohen and featuring:


Past News from the Field Theme: "Creative responses to the global pandemic"

Past News from the Field Theme: "Artistic and cultural dimensions of protest movements around the globe"

Article: Let’s make a better world: policy implications of the cultural work practice of Jane Wilburn Sapp
Journal of Arts Education Policy Review
October 26, 2019
Dr. Cynthia Cohen

Video: Fate, Family and the Floundering of a Friendship

Past 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!*
And listen to the related podcast series.

Sarah Terrazano wins Academy of American Poets Prize

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

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


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

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

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

Read more News from the Field.

Acting Together Documentary

holding hands

Watch the preview!

Find "Acting Together" screenings near you.

News - Archive


Transforming Conflict: Interview with Cynthia Cohen on artstomarket blog
December 10, 2012
Brandeis University‘s Peacebuilding and the Arts program works to strengthen the practice and nexus of the arts and conflict transformation by generating and disseminating knowledge, and facilitating networks of effective action. Dr. Cynthia Cohen is the program’s director who works in cooperation with Theatre Without Borders and other artists using art to promote change in divided communities… Read more.

Report from Colombia
November 27, 2012
Our wonderful Web Assistant Lauren Satterlee is a graduate student at the Heller School for Social Policy and Management in the Masters of Arts program in Sustainable International Development. Lauren is currently conducting her Masters Practicum in Colombia with the Corporation for the Sustainable Development of the Archipelago of San Andres, Old Providence, and Santa Catalina (CORALINA), which is the regional government entity of Colombia’s National Environment System (SINA).


Old Providence islanders protesting
the UN International Court of Justice
ruling to give Nicaragua sea territory.
Photo Credit: Lauren Satterlee

She is working with CORALINA's Seaflower Marine Protected Area team and stakeholders on its sustainable alternative livelihoods projects, as well as supporting various other organizational initiatives. Lauren sent us a report from Colombia recently. Read her report: Reflections in Colombia: Film, community dialogue, and peaceful protest as methods for social and political change.

International Peace Research Association: IPRA Japan Conference
November 24–28, 2012
Mie University, Tsu City, Mie Prefecture, Japan
Cynthia Cohen, Director of the Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts is a co-convener of this annual conference. Dr. Cohen will be presenting two papers: “Envisioning an Infrastructure for the Peacebuilding/Arts Field” and “Singing in the Dark Times: Performance and Non-violent Resistance.” She will be also hosting a film screening of “Acting Together on the Stage” and will be reading from “Acting Together” anthology in the book reading event. See below for more details.

Monday, 11/26
“Gender in Peacebuilding and the Arts”
Book Reading by Bernedette Muthien and Cindy Cohen

Bernedette Muthien, a convener for the Global Political Economy Commission and Cindy Cohen, a convener for the Art & Peace commission are joining together to share excerpts from their books, focusing on gender in Peacebuilding and the Arts.

Tuesday, 11/27
 “Acting Together on the World Stage
Film Screening event

ATDocWith the goal of illustrating non-violent ways of addressing human conflict, the documentary, “Acting Together on the World Stage,” presents the work of theatre artists, cultural leaders and peacebuilding practitioners who are drawing on the disciplines of their crafts to support communities to creatively resist abuses of power, re-humanize adversaries, and become more just, inclusive and peaceful. Featuring stories of artists from the United States, Peru, Argentina, Serbia, Uganda, Cambodia and Australia, the 54-minute film strengthens an emerging international movement linking performance and peacebuilding, and highlights the movement’s achievements and its promise.

PAX 250 – The Arts of Building Peace
Instructor: Cynthia Cohen
Time: Wednesdays, 9 - 11:50am


PAX250 students with Cynthia Cohen and
a guest lecturer, Mahmood Karimi-Hakak,
Iranian Theater Artist, Poet and Educator.
Spring 2011. Photo Credit: Naoe Suzuki

Through analysis of case studies, interviews with socially engaged artists, critical reflections on works of art and student projects, this course explores how cultural productions contribute to non-violent resistance, the re-humanization of former enemies, and reconciliation. It will focus on performance and visual arts. There are no prerequisites and this course is open to both graduates and undergraduates, but undergraduates are required to fill out the add/drop form from the registrar's office, which they should bring to Naoe Suzuki, in room 327 of the Abraham Shapiro Academic Complex (across the street from the Heller School.) Graduate students may register online. Contact Alia Goldfarb for more information.

See other courses supported by the Ethics Center.

“Linking the Arts With Justice”
by Cindy Cohen. Summer/Fall 2012 issue of Ethical Central Newsletter. Have you witnessed a play when, at a particular moment, the quality of the audience’s attention was deepened and transformed? Have you felt lifted up?… Read more.

“Exposure: Photography and the Politics of Looking”


Photo Credit: David Weinstein

Students, faculty, staff, and guests gathered in the Rose Art Museum for a discussion of the photographic image and its resonance with politics, as part of the exhibition "Dor Guez: 100 Steps to the Mediterranean." The event combined two keynote lectures by prominent visiting experts: Andrés Zervigón (Professor of Photography, Rutgers University) and Catherine Cissé van den Muijsenbergh (Executive Director of the Institute for
Historical Justice and Reconciliation). Read more.

“Farhat Abgaria: Expert Dialogue Facilitator in Residence at Brandeis”
Farhat Agbaria, a coexistence facilitator based at Givat Haviva and Seeds of Peace, was in residence at Brandeis University from September 19 to 30, sponsored by the Ethics Center. Agbaria has facilitated encounters between Israelis and Palestinians for decades, and has been connected to the Center since 1998, when he explored coexistence and the quest for justice as a Brandeis International Fellow. Read Reflection on Farhat Abgaria’s Visit” by Cynthia Cohen. 

Rose exhibit catalyst for peacebuilding explorations
The Rose Art Museum exhibition "Dor Guez: 100 Steps to the Mediterranean" has been bookended with visits to Brandeis by people playing important roles in the quest for coexistence and reconciliation around the worl. Read more.

Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts featured in Brandeis Magazine: (Summer 2012 issue) 

Angels in the Wings: A Brandeis collaboration helps theater artists and cultural workers build platforms for peace.

During the Yugoslav Wars in the 1990s, military and paramilitary forces engaged in terrible, widespread violence against civilians targeted because of their ethnicity or religion. Concentration and rape camps were constructed. Bloody massacres were commonplace. The result was genocide... Read more.

“Acting Together on the World Stage” at Imagining America National Conference:
Early registration deadline: August 31
October 4–7
New York

October 6
Film screening: “Acting Together on the World Stage” Documentary & discussion with Cindy Cohen
721 Broadway, Lower Level, Room 017, New York University

The 2012 Imagining America conference is an occasion to reflect critically on the shared predicaments of democratically-oriented, cultural work in higher education and community-based organizations; to articulate languages and practices of possibility; and to develop and strengthen cross-sectoral networks committed to moving such work forward. They are seeking for participation. Read more and register.imaginingamerica

Breathing Life into the Ashes: Resilience, Arts and Social Transformation
Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies
PeterWallThe University of British Columbia
October 21-26, 2012

Co-lead by Michelle LeBaron, Professor and Director of the Program on Dispute Resolution from the University of British Columbia, and Cynthia Cohen, Director of the Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts from the Brandeis University, this roundtable brings into generative and lively collaboration an intercultural, international group of practioners and scholars positioned to advance the work of Social Transformation and Arts (STA), with the following three purposes: to explore and deepen experience and understandings of individual and collective resilience; to develop an infrastructure to strengthen the resilience and the legitimacy of the STA field; and to advance understanding of assessment and evaluation in STA fields.

Together, participants will examine how STA fosters positive social change in settings around the world. The roundtable will include performances highlighting arts-based work as a response to systemic and other violence that powerfully illustrate the potency of STA.

*Registration required. Contact Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies for details. 

“Acting Together” Documentary Selected
to Receive a 2012 Telly Award

June 8, 2012 – The Telly Awards has named Cynthia Cohen and Allison Lund as winners in the 33rd Annual Telly Awards for their piece titled “Acting Together on the World Stage.”  Selected from nearly 13,000 entries from all 50 states and numerous countries, Telly Award is the most well-known and prestigious professional video industry award, this is a tremendous honor for the production team including Theatre Without Borders, Brandeis University’s Peacebuilding and the Arts program, and filmmaker Allison Lund. “The Telly Awards has a mission to honor the very best in film and video,” said Linda Day, executive director of the Telly Awards.  “Cohen and Lund's accomplishment illustrates their creativity, skill, and dedication to their craft and serves as a testament to great film and video production.”…Read more.

Roots“Acting Together on the World Stage” at Alternate ROOTS Conference
August 9, 2012

Cynthia Cohen will be presenting the documentary film “Acting Together on the World Stage” during the 36th Annual Business Meeting & Artists Retreat at Alternate ROOTS Conference.

Registration is required. More information.

IPRA Japan Conference 2012
November 24 - 28, 2012

This year, the International Peace Research Association (IPRA) is convening its bi-annual conference in Tsu City, Mie Prefecture, Japan. Since 2004, IPRA has included an Arts and Peace commission which facilitates networking and sharing of information among artists, peacebuilders, researchers and educators throughout the world. Read more about the conference and submission process.

January - March 2012

blueExhibit: BLUE
Naoe Suzuki

January 12 – March 2, 2012
Women's Studies Research Center, Brandeis University
Art exhibit by Naoe Suzuki, Senior Program Coordinator for the Program in Peacebuilding and the Arts. Suzuki is showing her current work inspired by water—both its healing power and water crisis around the world. Read more.

Opening Reception
Thursday, January 26, 5:00-7:30pm
WSRC, Epstein Building
Meet the artist and enjoy some refreshments in the Women Studies Research Center's Kniznick Gallery.

Artist's Slide Talk
Tuesday, February 14, 12:30pm
WSRC lecture hall

Exhibit inspired by water crisis around the world

Naoe Suzuki submitted an exhibit proposal, mostly on a series that focused on a female tiger trainer, to the Kniznick Gallery in the Women's Studies Research Center almost three years ago. It was ultimately accepted, but long before that exhibit took shape, Suzuki’s mind had wandered to a new subject matter: water. Read more on BrandeisNOW.

Suzuki's show opens spring art seasonblue
While water usually evokes images of healing and calm, the artist Naoe Suzuki chose to twist its healing power and focus on the contamination and degradation of water in her latest exhibition, titled "BLUE," which opened at the Women's Studies Research Center Jan. 12. Michele L'Heureux, curator and director of arts at the WSRC, organized the show… Read more.