Forgiveness in the Context of Generalized Political Violence

Sat Mar 2, 2019
2:00 pm - 3:30 pm

arts, forgiveness, imagination, peace, theatre

Forgiveness in the Context of Generalized Political Violence

Laurel Borisenko conducted Ph.D. research in 3 different African countries on the role of the arts in leading to healing and reconciliation, and ultimately peacebuilding.  Forgiveness arose as a major theme as Laurel interviewed survivors of political violence in these countries.  In this afternoon session, Laurel will describe the different dynamics between victims and perpetrators, lead us in a discussion of the role of forgiveness as a precursor to healing and reconciliation.

Presenter: Laurel Borisenko

Laurel Borisenko has spent more than a decade working in humanitarian aid and complex emergencies around the world. She has held senior management roles in a variety of faith-based international NGOs and she has worked with UN agencies, in the areas of emergency relief, refugee protection, as well as peacebuilding. In addition to her work in West Africa with Mennonite Central Committee, Laurel brings first-hand knowledge of this topic through her field-based Ph.D. research, spanning five years.


Please call us at 250-754-3254 or send us an email to to register. Cost of the workshop is $20


  1.  ‘The Play I Could Not Publish’. in Experiences in Researching Conflict and Violence- Fieldwork Interrupted. Editors, Althea-Maria Rivas and Brendan Ciaran Browne, Policy Press, University of Bristol, UK, 2018.
  2. ‘Arts-Based Peacebuilding: Functions of Theatre in Uganda, Kenya, and Zimbabwe’, Ph.D. thesis, University of Amsterdam, 2016.
  1. ‘The Collapsible Space Between Us’: Refugee Theatre as a Tool of Resilience in Kenya, Canadian Journal for Peace and Conflict Studies, Canadian Mennonite University, Winnipeg, pending publication in 2016. (republished with permission in Hekima Review, December 2017, Nairobi).
  1. ‘Dancing in the Dragon’s Jaws’: Community Response to Harare Theatre as a Tool of Peace Building’. In Post-Conflict Performance, Film and Visual Arts:  Cities of Memory, Editors, Des O-Rawe and Mark Phelan, Palgrave Macmillan, UK, 2016.

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