How Wars End (FYSEM-110 WE)

Somali Tutoring

Image courtesy of the MHC History Department

Instructor: Professor Hanson

How do wars end? Why is peace often so fragile? What keeps wars going when people long for them to be over? Are some strategies of war-ending more effective than others? When do negotiated settlements work, and when do they fail? What do citizens contribute? Do elections help end wars and build peace? What about rituals, ceremonies, or national institutions focused on healing? This first year seminar uses the historian’s strategies of close observation and careful interpretation of evidence to explore the attitudes, social processes, and institutions which contributed the resolution of violent conflicts in Africa in the past half century.

As a first year seminar, we work on developing our capacities to read efficiently, to write well, and to contribute to the learning of the whole class. We connect with the community beyond Mount Holyoke through a family mentoring program in Springfield with recently resettled refugees, primarily from Somalia.