John Paul Lederach describes discussing alternatives to violent conflict with groups who felt powerless and that violence was their only avenue of action. One method he uses is to ask them what violence has achieved historically.
John Paul Lederach is Professor of Practice for International Peacebuilding with the Joan B. Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame. He works as a practitioner-scholar, providing facilitation, mediation and training/education, with extensive experience at national and community levels in North and Latin America, Africa, Southeast and Central Asia. Widely known for the development of culturally appropriate approaches to conflict transformation and the design and implementation of strategic approaches to peacebuilding his approach has focused on innovations for building constructive change in settings experiencing extensive violence and deep rooted-conflict. Author of 17 books and manuals, including Building Peace: Sustainable Reconciliation in Divided Societies (US Institute of Peace Press), The Little Book of Conflict Transformation (Good Books), The Moral Imagination: The Art and Soul of Building Peace (Oxford University Press), and his most recent with daughter Angela Jill, When Blood and Bones Cry Out: Journeys through the soundscape of healing and reconciliation (Queensland University Press and Oxford University Press).