Johan Galtung, the Father of Peace Studies

  • Johan Galtung
  • Dietrich Fischer
Part of the SpringerBriefs on Pioneers in Science and Practice book series (BRIEFSPIONEER, volume 5)


This brief overview of Johan Galtung’s life and work begins with some of his childhood experiences (such as his father being imprisoned in a Nazi concentration camp) that shaped his determination to work for peace. It surveys some of his main new concepts and theories (such as direct, structural and cultural violence, negative and positive peace, rank discordance as a factor of genocide, and peaceful conflict transformation, among many others). It summarizes his contributions in mediating in over one hundred international conflicts, founding peace institutes around the world, publishing over 160 books and over 1,600 articles, teaching thousands of people around the world in conflict resolution and peace building, and inspiring many to devote their lives to peace.


Foreign Minister Structural Violence Direct Violence Security Commission Warsaw Treaty 
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  1. Galtung J (1969) Violence, peace and peace research. J Peace Res 6(3):167–191. Also in: Essays in Peace Research I, pp 109–134Google Scholar
  2. Galtung J (1971) A structural theory of imperialism. J Peace Res 8(2): 81–117. Also in: Essays in Peace Research IV, pp 437–481Google Scholar
  3. Galtung J (1990) Cultural violence. J Peace Res 27(3): 291–305Google Scholar
  4. Galtung J (1998) Conflict transformation by peaceful means (the TRANSCEND Method) “mini-version”. United Nations, Geneva, p 37Google Scholar
  5. Galtung J (2000) Conflict transformation by peaceful means (the TRANSCEND Method) “maxi-version”. United Nations, Geneva, p 192Google Scholar
  6. Galtung J (2004) Transcend and transform: an introduction to conflict work (Pluto Press, London; Paradigm Press, Boulder, Colorado, p 189)Google Scholar
  7. Galtung J (2007) Introduction: peace by peaceful conflict transformation––the TRANSCEND Approach. In: Webel C, Galtung J (eds) Handbook of peace and conflict studies. Routledge, Abingdon, UK, pp 14–32Google Scholar
  8. Galtung J (2008) 50 years: 100 peace and conflict perspectives. TRANSCEND University Press, Kolofon, p 263Google Scholar
  9. Galtung J (2009) The fall of the US empire––and then what? TRANSCEND University Press, Kolofon, p 268Google Scholar
  10. Galtung J (2010a) A theory of conflict: overcoming direct violence. TRANSCEND University Press, Kolofon, p 320Google Scholar
  11. Galtung J (2010b) A theory of development: overcoming structural violence. TRANSCEND University Press. Kolofon, p 283Google Scholar
  12. Galtung J (2012) Peace economics: from a killing to a living economy. TRANSCEND University Press (forthcoming), KolofonGoogle Scholar
  13. Kemp A (1985) Image of the peace field: an international survey. J Peace Res 22(2): 129–140Google Scholar
  14. Köhler G, Alcock N (1976) An empirical table of structural violence. Journal of Peace Res 12(4): 343–356Google Scholar
  15. Zimmerman C, Leitenberg M (1979) Hiroshima lives on. Mazingira, vol 9. United Nations Environment Programme, NairobiGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.VersonnexFrance
  2. 2.Galtung Institute for Peace Theory and PracticeGrenzach-WyhlenGermany
  3. 3.BaselSwitzerland

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