Here is the second set of reading recommendations we are compiling for any clergy person, lay person, or student interested in Conflict Transformation! Feel free to suggest books you have found useful in the comments!
Pithy and resonant, W. Craig Gilliam’s poems are best experienced by reading them aloud and slowly savoring each carefully chosen word or phrase. Many poems describe experiences in nature where the poet has experienced moments of surprise, delight, illumination, and/or confirmation. Gilliam is also exceptionally attuned to the interactions of human beings with one another and the natural world. For Craig, poetry is a way of life, a way of being in the world. He brings this viewpoint to his work as a consultant, facilitator and educator in leadership development and coaching, conflict transformation, and facilitating courageous conversations.
Anglican Archbishop Desmond Tutu spent his life battling apartheid in South Africa. Winner of the 1984 Nobel Peace Prize, Archbishop Tutu was asked by President Nelson Mandela in 1995 to chair the new Truth and Reconciliation Commission, whose goal was to investigate apartheid-era crimes. Archbishop Tutu’s candid memoir describes the tense and conflict-ridden process of deciding how to adjudicate the crimes of apartheid. He then narrates the harrowing responsibility of offering amnesty to perpetrators of heinous crimes contingent upon the perpetrators full confession. Through the entire truth and reconciliation process, Archbishop Tutu firmly adheres to the conviction that there is indeed no future without forgiveness.
Dr. Christine D. Pohl is Associate Provost for Faculty Development and professor of Church in Society at Asbury Theological Seminary. In Living Into Community: Cultivating Practices that Sustain Us, Pohl suggests practices to enrich family and congregational life. Pohl is especially attuned to living a life built around the virtues of gratitude and truthfulness.
An especially interesting chapter in Living Into Community deals with the question of how to receive, reject, value, or disregard gifts. Pohl deals with the dimensions of gift giving and receiving and the strings that attach us through our mutual lives as gifts to one another. So if you have ever received a gift you did not need or want, Pohl has an interesting perspective to offer you!
The Circle Way provides both a theoretical framework and practical skills for hosting a circle conversation. A circle conversation (also known as a circle process) provides a structured space for exploration, problem-solving,decision making, and the healing of relationships. The circle process can be used in a various settings Baldwin and Linnea emphasize that every participant in the circle process has a role to play and contributes to the learning experienced by the group in the circle.