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Jody-Williams, Knight Visitor

Jody Willams. // Photo by John Murphy

Nobel Laureate Jody Williams to deliver Sol Kanee Lecture on Peace and Justice

October 23, 2018 — 

Nobel Peace Laureate Jody Williams is the University of Manitoba’s 2018 Robert and Elizabeth Knight Distinguished Visitor and at a series of events she will explore the question of what role women have in the promotion of peace with justice and equality.

Williams was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1997 for her efforts to ban antipersonnel landmines and for her defense of human rights. The University of Manitoba’s Arthur V. Mauro Centre for Peace and Justice is honoured to have her deliver the 15th Sol Kanee Lecture on Peace and Justice.

The event series begins on Wednesday, October 24 at 2 p.m. in Marshall McLuhan Hall (UMSU University Centre, Fort Garry campus) with an open Q & A session moderated by Peace and Conflict Studies Graduate Programs Director, Dr. Adam Muller.

Williams will then meet with local women peace-builders and community activists in a session moderated by Dr. Anna Snyder, contributor to the development of the UM/UW Joint MA in Peace and Conflict Studies.

On Thursday, October 25, Williams will deliver the 15th Sol Kanee Lecture on Peace and Justice, The Nobel Womens Initiative: Women Supporting Women in the Pursuit of Peace at 1:30 p.m. at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights.

UN Landmines Treaty Earns 1997 Nobel Peace Prize

After a decade of work in the 1980s trying to stop US military involvement in El Salvador and Nicaragua, Williams was asked to create a civil society campaign to ban antipersonnel landmines. Beginning in early 1992 with two non-governmental organizations and no other staff but herself, Williams oversaw the growth of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines to over 1,300 organizations in 95 countries working to eliminate the weapon.

In an unprecedented cooperative effort with governments, UN bodies and the International Committee of the Red Cross, she served as a chief strategist and spokesperson for the ICBL as it dramatically achieved its goal of an international treaty banning antipersonnel landmines in September 1997. A few weeks later it was announced that Jody Williams and the International Campaign to Ban Landmines would share the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize.

Human Security, not National Security

Through it all, Williams continues to struggle to reclaim the real meaning of peace, which she defines by human security, not national security. “We must teach ourselves to believe that peace is not a ‘utopian vision,’ but a responsibility that must be worked for each and every day.” For Williams, working for peace requires dogged persistence and a commitment to sustainable peace, with socio-economic justice and equality.

Since January of 2006, Williams has served as the founding chair of the Nobel Women’s Initiative. Along with sister Nobel Laureate Dr. Shirin Ebadi of Iran, she took the lead in establishing the Initiative. The Nobel Women’s Initiative uses the prestige of the Nobel Peace Prize and the influence and access of the women Nobel Laureates themselves to support and amplify the efforts of women around the world working for sustainable peace with justice and equality.

What: Q&A session with Nobel Peace Laureate Jody Williams

When: Wednesday, October 24 at 2:00 pm

Where: Marshall McLuhan Hall, 204 UMSU University Centre, Fort Garry campus

What: 2018 Sol Kanee Lecture on Peace and Justice – “The Nobel Women’s Initiative: Women Supporting Women in the Pursuit of Peace”

When: Thursday, October 25 at 1:30 pm

Where: Canadian Museum for Human Rights

Both events are free and open to all.


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