Celia Osowski’s placement with the Old Library Trust during her Northern Ireland Semester

Celia Osowski ’10 participated in the Northern Ireland semester during the spring 2009 semester and described her community placement in Derry / Londonderry.


A central part of my semester in Northern Ireland has been my placement with a community organization. The purpose of this placement has been to give me first-hand experience working with a community group. This has been a very important element of my learning process because it has allowed me to experience the practical side of the theory-based learning I have experienced up to this point, and during this semester.

Historical Perspective and Current Realities

The OLT was founded in 2001 on the site of the former Creggan Public library. Throughout the troubles this library was never damaged by the community, the property was respected as a space not to be harmed. When the OLT began as a community health initiative on the site leased from the Derry City Council, they began to think about a name for themselves, but realized that the term “Old Library” had already stuck, and so the Old Library Trust was born. The beautiful new community health centre was completed in 2005. It contains the offices of the OLT staff as well as offices for the head start program, a crèche, a café, program rooms in several shapes and sizes to accommodate different program needs, a workout room, a dental suite, a therapy suite, and science classrooms. The building includes three shops on the street level that are rented by a local butcher, a hairdresser, and SureStart. The athletics hall was completed in 2008, and is stocked with various types of sport equipment as well as large locker room facilities. The OLT also oversees the use of a large all-weather pitch with floodlights.


The Old Library Trust runs most of its programs on a season-by-season basis. George and Tommy run the athletic programmes, which include exercise classes such as kick-boxing and aerobics, as well as programs that teach healthy lifestyles in supportive groups (the ACES program) or in a one-on-one format (the Step Up program).

Relaxation programmes are an important component of the Trust’s offerings. Oasis is a women’s mental health support group. A meditation and relaxation class helps to teach relaxation techniques, as does a yoga class. Stress Busters is a stress management program that helps people to look at the causes of stress and teaches them ways to combat it. The Old Library Trust will also help people get in contact with the Lifeline program.

Health programs include a foot clinic, food hygiene classes, ante natal classes for parents-to-be, breast-feeding classes, a support group for people with respiratory conditions.

Continuing education courses include NVQ childcare certification, counselling workshops, community health educators training, and first aid.

Finally, recreations classes include a 50+ Dance Hour, Flower arranging, arts and crafts, recreational art, and a Chat’n’Chew Luncheon Club.

The work that I am doing deals mostly with a program called the Community Healing Programme, which operated from 2003-2005. The main part of this programme was a large research project on the effect of the Troubles on the health of the Creggan community. Other elements of the program included different support groups, creative writing and story-telling workshops, and healing of memories workshops.

My Involvement

My work at the OLT hasn’t been directly involved with the programmes being offered currently. I have been working on bringing together research done several years ago by OLT in the Creggan community into a cohesive, usable report. So my time at work has been split between shadowing Seamus and other members in meetings with funding bodies, steering groups, and program providers—and sorting through all the old research, transcribing interviews, researching the historical background for the events described in those interviews, and picking out the main themes to be discussed in the report.


Working at the Old Library Trust in Creggan allowed me to get to know a particular community of Derry in great detail. Through speaking to people who live and work in the Creggan, researching their history, and even just talking to the taxi drivers on the way home about their memories and perceptions of Creggan (many of them were born there), I was granted a deeper look at the particular history of the Troubles as they related to this small community, the current realities the community faces, the strengths and weaknesses in the community today, and it’s place in the larger picture of Derry in general.

Congolese activist Zawadi Nikuze on reconciliation in North Kivu

Zawadi NikuzeSwarthmore Friends Meeting is honored to host a forum for Swarthmore students, faculty, staff, and members of surrounding communities to meet Congolese activist Zawadi Nikuze. Ms. Nikuze coordinates reconciliation work in the eastern province of North Kivu, Democratic Republic of the Congo. As part of the African Great Lakes Initiative on peace and reconciliation, her work includes facilitating workshops on healing from violence, rape, and the trauma of displacement. Ms. Nikuze’s fluency in French, English, Swahili, and three regional languages have been essential to her powerful work. Come and be inspired by the far-reaching effects of Zawadi Nikuze’s embodiment of the Quaker Peace Testimony.

You may sample personal narratives (compiled by Zawadi Nikuze) of displaced families, 2007-2009, and their experiences with reconciliation.

Sunday, April 25th, 2010


Whittier Room

Swarthmore Friends Meeting (on the campus of Swarthmore College)

Directions to Swarthmore College

Getting serious about changing conflict rhetoric


In print | Published March 25, 2010

It’s time to put my money where my mouth is. I didn’t think I could traipse through the whole semester spouting platitudes, did you? Between you and me, it was getting a little old.

Have I been all too vague about what I think we should do? I think we should start the [Israel/Palestine] club to end all [Israel/Palestine] clubs. It sounds a bit catchier and more apocalyptic without the modifiers, but you also lose some of the specificity.

Read the full opinion piece in The Phoenix …

[Jessa Deutsch ’10 is a minor in Peace and Conflict Studies.]

Boots memorialize Iraq War’s soldiers


In print | Published March 25, 2010

Nick Brown | Phoenix Staff - Also on display inside the boots were mementos and notes from family members.

Sergeant Jennifer Hartman of New Ringgold, Pennsylvania entered the military when she was 17 years old. Four years later a suicide bombing killed her and two fellow soldiers near an electrical substation at her barracks in Baghdad.

On Monday, a pair of boots stood alongside 18 others on the second floor of McCabe Library as memorials to Hartman and other soldiers of Eastern Pennsylvania who died in Iraq.

Read the full story in The Phoenix…

More from the First-Fridays Film Series

April 2010 – 35th Anniversary of the End to the U.S. War in Vietnam…

Hearts & Minds

Peace Center of Delaware County First-Friday Free Film Series – April 2, 7p.m., Hearts & Minds

Special Showing of the Classic Anti-War Documentary


April 2, 7 p.m. – Hearts & Minds (1974, 112 min., Rated R for war violence, language, and brief nudity), the restored version of the classic film about the U.S. war in Vietnam and 1974 Best Documentary Oscar winner will be shown on the large screen at the Peace Center of Delaware County, 1001 Old Sproul Road, in Springfield, Delaware County.

April 2010 marks the 35th anniversary of the end of the Vietnam war. Directed by Peter Davis, using his own war footage, newsreels, presidential speeches and interviews with the likes of Robert Kennedy, Gen. William Westmoreland and Daniel Ellsberg, Hearts & Minds is about a time of war that defined a generation and an arrogant belief in the rightness of U.S. action around the world that reverberates throughout our times.

Michael Moore (Fahrenheit 9-11, Sicko) credits Hearts & Minds with his becoming a film maker, saying that the film is “Required viewing for anyone who says, ‘I am an American.'”

The First-Friday free film showings at the Peace Center of Delaware County are cosponsored by the Brandywine Peace Community. Doors open for light refreshments at 6:30p.m.

The showing of Hearts & Minds will be followed by an an after-film discussion with Dr. Sophie Quinn-Judge, who was an medical aid worker in Vietnam during the war. Quinn-Judge is director of the Center for Vietnamese Philosophy, Culture, and Society, and is just back from an extended visit to Vietnam.

The Peace Center of Delaware County is located within the Springfield Friends Meetinghouse, just off the corner of Old Marple and S. Sproul Roads, behind the Mr. Car Wash.

For directions or more information, visit www.delcopeacecenter.org or call 610-544-1818.


April 2010 marks the 35th Anniversary of the end to the U.S. war in Vietnam. What are the lessons and legacy of America’s longest war?

Sunday, April 11, The Legacy of Vietnam Today

will be the topic of a speakers panel at the Brandywine Peace Community Monthly Potluck Supper and Program held at University Lutheran Church, 3637 Chestnut Street in Philadelphia, beginning at 4:30p.m.

People are asked to bring a main dish, salad, or dessert to share.

The speakers panel will feature:

* David McReynolds, renowned socialist-pacifist and presidential candidate, who co-authored the first analysis from the U.S. peace movement calling for unconditional U.S. withdrawal from Vietnam. McReynolds was the national staff organizer at War Resisters League for 40 years and a leading strategist and organizer of the Vietnam-era anti-war movement. In 1966, at the height of the war, he traveled to Vietnam, meeting with dissident Buddhists, and then again in 1971. After the war, in 1981, he traveled to Vietnam and Cambodia.

* Dr. Sophie Quinn-Judge, who during the war was a medical aid worker in Vietnam, is now Associate Director of the Center for Vietnamese Philosophy, Culture, and Society at Temple University. Just back from another extended visit to Vietnam and fluent in Vietnamese, Dr. Quinn-Judge has received international recognition for her scholarly work on Vietnam, including her highly-regarded book, Ho Chi Minh: The Missing Years (1919-1941).

* Peter Lems, American Friends Service Committee Advocacy Program for Afghanistan and Iraq, has traveled throughout the Middle East, including Iraq and Afghanistan.

For more information, call 610 -544-1818 or visit www.brandywinepeace.com

Campus Camp Wellstone coming to Swarthmore

Campus Camp Wellstone is one of America’s most well respected student activism training groups, and trains students nationwide in mobilizing, messaging, stratigic planning, relationship building, grassroots lobbying, and the Wellstone philosophy of grassroots organizing.  On Saturday  the 24th and Sunday the 25th of April, Campus Camp Wellstone will be coming to Swarthmore to offer a free two-day activism training!

Participants in the training will receive a free practical education in everything from organizing events and campaigns to political advocacy, as well as a free Campus Camp Wellstone tee-shirt and a book on the Wellstone theory of grassroots and social organizing.

Seeing that so many Swarthmore alumni go on to careers in politics or other brands of activism, the skills provided by Campus Camp Wellstone are particularly valuable to Swarthmore students, both while at school and once beyond it.  Training such as this also provides a constructive venue in which members of the activist community and those wishing to become more involved in campus life can come together to learn more about each other and the different projects being undertaken by their fellow students.

This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Swarthmore students.  To register, send your name, email, phone number, and student ID number (so that we can have food at the training) to ecorby1@swarthmore.edu All food will be vegetarian, but if you have any further dietary restrictions please let us know in the email as well.

The training will be between 9:30am and 6:00pm on Saturday, and between 9:30am and 4:30pm on Sunday in the Hicks Mural Room.

The event is sponsored by SDS, SLAP, Earthlust, Young Democrats, the Sociology and Anthropology department, the Peace and Conflict Studies program, the President’s Office, and the Student Budget Committee.

For more information on Campus Camp Wellstone, go to http://www.wellstone.org/our-programs/campus-camp-wellstone

The Trials of Lawyers in the Era of Torture

Islamic Studies Annual Lecture

Lisa Hajjar

Associate Professor of Law and Society

University of California, Santa Barbara

Guantanamo Bay prisoners

April 19

4:30 PM

Science Center 199

Lawyers are crucial and privileged interlocutors in efforts to challenge and end the US torture policy. Who are these lawyers representing torture victims of the “war on terror?” How has this work affected them politically and ideologically? What kinds of legal strategies and networking have resulted from the ongoing and collective lawyering on torture-related cases? What are the national and global ramifications of these ongoing legal struggles?

Co-Sponsored by the Political Science and Sociology and Anthropology Departments, and the Public Policy and Peace and Conflict Studies Programs

Hajjar .pdf flyer

Directions to Swarthmore College

What is Palestine? A discourse analysis of Palestinian and Israeli Peace Activists

“What is Palestine? A discourse analysis of Palestinian and Israeli Peace Activists”

Dr. Camelia Suleiman, Lecturer, Tri-College Arabic Program, Bryn Mawr College

Thursday, March 25

4:30 PM

Bond Hall

Where are the temporal and spatial borders of Palestine? Generally, to Israeli activists, Palestine occupies a very specific spatial-temporal locality: all the land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea prior to the year 1948, the year Israel became a state. Palestine after that year means to them the spatial dimension of the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip, in other words, the remainder of historic Palestine from 1948-1967 (the year Israel occupied the West Bank and Gaza Strip). This is not as simple or as straightforward to Palestinian interviewees. Their relationship to Palestine biographically, historically, and experientially is much more complex, despite of the fact that their physical mobility is highly restricted. Further, activists from both groups locate the ‘self’ experientially in two critical moments in their biographies: birth and coming into adulthood. They generally link these moments to historic events taking place, and as formative of their later activism.

Sponsored by the Arabic section of the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures

Discover the Peace Collection at Swarthmore

I was just visiting the Peace Collection website for some information and was inspired to create this quick blog post inviting you to visit the archives website.  The collection of peace movement organizations and individuals is really remarkable. What a fine resource to have right at our finger tips! Do you know what is IN the Peace Collection? Take a quick browse through the handy “Document Groups” page.  Here are a few of the items you will find:

Gene Sharp [8″ x 10″ black & white photograph]

Albert Einstein Institution Records (DG 220)

125 linear feet

Founded in 1983; dedicated to advancing the study and use of strategic nonviolent action in conflicts throughout the world; committed to the defense of freedom, democracy, and the reduction of political violence through the use of nonviolent action; principal founder, Dr. Gene Sharp.


Jane Addams,1900 [4″ x 6.25″ sepia photograph; credit: Waters ]

Jane Addams Papers (DG 001)

130 linear feet

A world-famous social reformer; co-founded the first settlement house in America in 1889. Known as Hull-House, it reached thousands of Chicago-area immigrants through social activities and classes. Addams and her co-workers championed many causes on behalf of the urban poor, such as protection of immigrants, child labor laws, industrial safety, juvenile courts, and recognition of labor unions. As a feminist and pacifist, Addams was a leading figure in the movement for international peace. From 1915 through 1919, she served as chairman of the Woman’s Peace Party (U.S.) and the International Committee of Women for Permanent Peace. Both organizations were forerunners of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF). Addams was international president of WILPF from 1919 through 1929, and honorary international president from 1929 until her death in 1935. Jane Addams was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931.

photograph exhibit

photograghs online


The Phoenix at sail [6.5″ x 4.5″ black & white photograph, cropped]

A Quaker Action Group Records [AQAG] (DG 074)

19.75 linear feet

Founded in Philadelphia (PA) in 1966 to apply nonviolent direct action as a witness against the war in Vietnam; not an official body of the Religious Society of Friends; in 1971 transformed into Movement for a New Society.


Bayard Rustin with Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, India, 1949 (original includes other people) [7″x 5″sepia photograph, cropped; from box “Individuals: A-Z”]

Fellowship of Reconciliation Records [FOR] (DG 013)

171+ linear feet

Founded in 1915 by Christian pacifists; members are now drawn from many religious groups; seeks to apply principles of peace and social justice and nonviolent social change to issues such as disarmament, conscription, race relations, economic justice, and civil liberties. The FOR-USA is affiliated with the International Fellowship of Reconciliation.


Button “Taxes for Peace Not War; World Peace Tax Fund” [1.5″ metal;


National Campaign for a Peace Tax Fund Records (DG 155)

8 linear feet

Founded in Ann Arbor (MI) in 1971 as the World Peace Tax Fund to provide a means whereby a taxpayer conscientiously opposed to any participation in war could have his or her income, estate, and gift tax payments spent for non-military purposes only; national office moved to Washington (DC) in 1975; name changed to National Council for a World Peace Tax Fund in 1975, to National Campaign for a World Peace Tax Fund in 1983, and to National Campaign for a Peace Tax Fund in 1984 or 1985. Collection ncludes correspondence, office files, brochures, and newsletters. No finding aid available online.

tripod record


Bayard Rustin & Evan Thomas at 13th Annual WRL Conference, 1942 [9.25″ x 6.5″ sepia photograph, cropped; credit: Sidney Moritz, New York (NY)]

War Resisters League Records (DG 040)

34+ linear feet

Established by Dr. Jessie Wallace Hughan, together with colleagues from the Women’s Peace Society and the Women’s Peace Union, as an rganization with similar goals to War Resisters’ International; seeks to end war and social injustice through pacifist and nonviolent tactics.


Ron Kovac (Vietnam War veteran) protesting in front of Nixon headquarters, 1972 [3.5″ x 5″ color photograph, cropped]

Women Strike for Peace Records (DG 115)

32 linear feet

Begun in 1961 as a one-day protest against nuclear weapons, led by Dagmar Wilson, in Washington (DC); a nation-wide grass-roots organization most active during the Vietnam War, when it operated draft counseling and amnesty programs, and lobbied against the continuation of the war; has local chapters throughout the U.S.; national headquarters in Philadelphia (PA); legislative office and National Information Clearing House in Washington (DC); also known as WISP (Women’s International Strike for Peace) or Women for Peace; disbanded ca. 1989.


Washington State Branch with No More War signs, Seattle (WA), Sept. 1922

[10″ x 8″ sepia photograph, cropped; larger size]

Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (U.S.) Records [WILPF] (DG 043)
238+ linear feet

Established in January 1920, replacing the Woman’s Peace Party as the official arm of the WILPF in the United States; its aim was to “promote methods for the attainment of that peace between nations which is based on justice and good will and to cooperate with women from other countries who are working for the same ends”; an important leader in the peace movement of the 20th century, as well as in women’s issues; had a Legislative Office in Washington (DC) for many years; had/has many state and local branches established to carry out goals of the national program on a more local level; national office in Philadelphia (PA) closed in 2009; some activities currently being overseen from office in Connecticut (2010- ). Collection includes records from its predecessor organization, the Woman’s Peace Party, some files related to the International WILPF (especially reports of international congresses), the U.S. National records, and the files of the Jane Addams Peace Association [JAPA]. Available as well are photographs and/or negatives (several thousand), periodicals, posters, banners, scrapbooks, postcards, graphics, audiovisual material, campaign buttons, lapel ribbons and pins, bumperstickers and other stickers, and other memorabilia.

photograph exhibit

How We Fight: Crusades, Quagmires, and the American Way of War

Dominic Tierney, Political Science, Swarthmore College

How We Fight: Crusades, Quagmires, and the American Way of War

Wednesday, March 31, 2010; 4:30 p.m.

Faculty lectures are open to the entire community and provide an excellent opportunity to learn from the current research and scholarship of our colleagues.  All faculty lectures are at 4:30 in the Scheuer Room.