Social Science

Peace and Justice Studies

Fall 2019 Criminal Justice Reform Panel on stage

Fall 2019 Criminal Justice Reform panel co-sponsored by PJS, AAUW, Shelby County NAACP, and Montevallo Progressive Alliance.

Peace and Justice Studies at the University of Montevallo examines causes and consequences of economic disparity, institutionalized inequality, and strategies of peace building and conflict resolution.

UM’s location at the heart of the civil rights triangle in rural Alabama and our institutional history of working toward gender equity and inclusivity provides unique opportunities to pursue the work of a peace and justice studies minor. Our students explore community issues within global contexts to critically analyze race, gender, and class relations.

We offer students spaces for experiential education and community partnerships as well as scholarly engagement to learn the history of and techniques for conflict resolution, mediation, social change, and critical thinking. Minors may enhance their major field of study through our social justice framework and go on to become negotiators, community mediators, government officials, educators, businesspeople, organizers, and professionals in organizations focused on human rights, dispute resolution, environmental protection, international law, and human and economic development.


Course Requirements

PJS 200 Introduction to Peace and Justice Studies (3 credits) – required

Exploration of issues, methods, and terminology essential to Peace and Justice Studies. Consists of readings, projects, and lecture-based study. Interdisciplinary course taught by UM professors in selected fields.

PJS 370/470 Special Topics in Peace and Justice Studies (3 credits) – required

Topics vary. Course may be repeated for credit as often as the topic changes.

Electives (12 credits) – list of approved electives announced each semester

Students must take four elective courses in at least three different disciplines. No more than two courses may be taken in any one discipline (includes cross-listings).

  • AAS 200 – Introduction to African American Studies
  • ART 326 – Special Topics**
  • BIO 405 – Biological Topics in Environmental Studies**
  • BL 283 – Legal Environment of Business
  • COMS 141 – Interpersonal Communication
  • COMS 355 – Intercultural Communication
  • COMS 410 – Environmental Communication
  • COMS 420 – Interpersonal Conflict Management
  • COMS 435 – Social Movement Rhetoric
  • COMS 460 – Seminar in Communication Studies**
  • ENG 232 – Global Literature: Perspectives Within a Period or Location**
  • ENG 405 – Studies in One or Two Authors**
  • ENG 471 – African-American Literature
  • ENG 472 – Literature from the Margins
  • ENG 473 – Postcolonial Literature
  • ENG 474 – Anglophone Literature**
  • ENG 475 – Literature of Sexuality and Gender**
  • ES 200 – Environment and Society
  • ES 300 – Interdisciplinary Approaches to Environmental Studies
  • HIST 424 – Colonial Latin America
  • PHIL 220 – Ethics
  • PHIL 300 – Special Topics in Philosophy**
  • POS 333 – Gender in World Politics
  • POS 335 – Identity Politics
  • POS 340 – World Politics
  • POS 350 – Model United Nations
  • POS 360 – Citizenship and Public Service
  • POS 446 – The Politics of Social Policy
  • POS 455 – International Relations
  • SOC 322 – Group Identities, Power and Difference
  • SOC 324 – Social Stratification
  • SOC 360 – Social Change
  • MG 308 – Business and Society
  • MG 371 – Nonprofit Organizations
  • MG 400 – Globalization: National and International Issues
  • MG 420 – Social Entrepreneurship and Sustainability
  • MG 464 – Leadership and Organizational Change**
  • NPS 371 – Nonprofit Organizations – Overview and Operations
  • NPS 420 – Social Entrepreneurship and Sustainability
  • SWK 203 – Introduction to Social Welfare and Social Work
  • SWK 301 – Selected Topics in Social Work**
  • SWK 373 – Social Policy

**Requires approval by PJS Coordinating Committee

Total: 18 credits


Fall 2024 PJS Courses

Cross-listed Course number PJS number Course title Instructor
  PJS 200 Intro to Peace and Justice Studies Rickel & Vazquez-Gonzalez
ENG 232-003 and -004 Elective Global Literature: Perspectives Within a Period or Location – Unquiet: Voices of Conscience and Protest Since 1950 Murphy
ENG 455/555 PJS 470 Style and Editing—Considerations of Linguistic Justice Mwenja
POS 330 PJS 370 Gender and Politics Eckelman

SOC 360

 

PJS 370 Social Change Lowry
SWK 203 Elective Introduction to Social Welfare and Social Work Newell
SWK 301 / Chem 380 / ES 301 PJS 370 Sowing Seeds of Justice Hayden & Tetloff
SWK 373 PJS 370 Social Policy Tetloff

PJS 200 Introduction to Peace and Justice Studies, Rickel & Vazquez-Gonzalez

MW 2 – 3:15 pm

This introduction to peace and justice studies will survey causes and consequences of economic disparity, institutionalized inequality, and strategies of peacebuilding and conflict resolution. Faculty from multiple disciplines will lead class discussions about both global and local forms of institutionalized inequality, the many causes of violence and conflict, and the impacts of nonviolent protest and social activism. This course will take advantage of UM’s location at the heart of the civil rights triangle by applying class content within the community and referring to those community experiences to deepen critical analysis of race, gender, and class relations both locally and globally.

ENG 232-003 and -004, PJS elective (email course substitution request to pjs@montevallo.edu), Global Literature: Perspectives Within a Period or Location – Unquiet: Voices of Conscience and Protest Since 1950, Murphy

ENG 232-003 11 am – 12:15 pm

ENG 232-004 12:30 – 1:45 pm

“What goes around comes around” may be a pop psychology standard, but in cases of prejudice, discrimination, injustice, and wars of many kinds, the history of humanity often seems to move in a dark and foolish circle.  Small lies turn into big ones.  Bad ideas turn into beliefs.  And power exercised on both ends of the political spectrum creates enormous harm.  But then, just as often, voices of protest arise that attempt to restore dignity and try to remind us of our shared humanity.  We will explore authors and singers whose voices seek peace and justice and offer inspiration for others who do the same.  They may be writing directly for the rights of women, Jews, African Americans, LGBTQ+ people, or those living under totalitarian regimes (and sometimes nearly all at once), but their lessons are universally important for those who think critically, express themselves clearly, and dream hopefully.  Our texts will include those listed below, and our assignments will be short responses to the texts, an engaged scholarly research paper, and spaces for students to offer their own examples of artists such as these. This course is an approved Peace and Justice Studies elective.

ENG 455/555 / PJS 470 Style and Editing—Considerations of Linguistic Justice, Mwenja

MWF 11 – 11:50 am

While people around the globe use many varieties of English to communicate effectively in innumerable contexts, the idea persists that writers should adhere to an imagined singular, “correct” standard. Students in this class will interrogate these perceived norms of American English, thinking specifically about whether those standards are as uniform as many people imagine. The class will also examine how—in practical terms—a multi-cultural democratic society might make room for many English varieties to be equally regarded as legitimate.

POS 330 / PJS 370 Gender and Politics, Eckelman

TR 11 am – 12:15 pm

Focuses on the history of women’s participation and struggle for political equality in the United States.

SOC 360 / PJS 370 Social Change, Lowry

MWF 1 – 1:50 pm

Theories and processes of social change in advanced societies, with emphasis on demographic development, social movements, and collective behavior.

SWK 203 / PJS Elective Introduction to Social Welfare and Social Work, Newell

TR 3:30 – 4:45 pm

Introduction to social welfare as a humane and stabilizing influence in U.S. society, and to social work as the dominant profession in social welfare.

SWK 301 / Chem 380 / ES 301 / PJS 370 Sowing Seeds of Justice, Hayden & Tetloff

MWF 11 – 11:50 am

This interdisciplinary course will examine the intersection between science and social systems with a focus on racial and income inequalities that result from the development and implementation of environmental policies. It will investigate the root causes of these disparities, their impact on physical, mental, and emotional health, and mechanisms for meaningful change.  The course will consist of community-based projects, lectures from course professors and guest speakers, and online content.

SWK 373 / PJS 370 Social Policy, Tetloff

TR 12:30 – 1:45 pm

An introduction to the study of social policy with emphases on:  1) how social policy influences the lives of citizens; 2) how social policy influences the practice of social work, and 3) the resulting responsibilities of social work to try to influence social policy. Utilizing Critical Race Theory, Intersectionality Theory, and Conflict Theory, the course examines historical and structural causes of inequalities, especially based on race, ethnicity, and gender, and explores policy-based solutions for social problems such as poverty, systemic racism, and barriers to social needs.


2023-2024 Peace and Justice Studies Committee Members

The charge of the Peace and Justice Studies Committee is to guide and support the interdisciplinary Peace and Justice Studies Program. Peace and justice studies at University of Montevallo will examine causes and consequences of economic disparity, institutionalized inequality, and strategies of peace building and conflict resolution. Specifically, committee members will develop and approve peace and justice course curricula; teach, co-teach, or guest lecture courses for credit in the Peace and Justice Studies Program; assist with creating, utilizing, and maintaining community partnerships; and serve as ambassadors of the Peace and Justice Studies Program on the University of Montevallo campus and in the community. The committee will approve by consensus the courses accepted for credit in the Peace and Justice Studies Program on a semester-by-semester basis. The committee member structure is designed to collaborate with and enhance other programs on and off campus and to co-sponsor events and activities related to peace and justice scholarship and practice. The committee reports to the Provost.

Committee Member Term* Term # Position

 

Jennifer Rickel

22-25 NA Co-Coordinator, ex officio, & Co-Chair
Meredith Tetloff 22-25 NA Co-Coordinator, ex officio, & Co-Chair
Susan Caplow 22-25 2 CAS, representing ES
Andrea Eckelman 22-25 2 CAS
Paul Mahaffey 23-26 1 CAS, representing African American Studies
Deb Lowry 22-25 2 CAS
Leonor Vazquez-Gonzalez 22-25 2 CAS, representing LAS
Milad Jasemi Zargani 21-24 1 COB, representing Nonprofit Studies
Latofia Parker 22-25 1 CEHD
Catherine Walsh 22-25 2 CFA
Joyce Jones 23-26 1 Community Outreach
Madyson Moye 23-24 1 Student (non-voting)