2015: Peace, Trauma, and Religion

With the development of the master specialisation Peace, Trauma, and Religion in mind, we thought it a good idea to allow 2015’s series to revolve around that specialisation, both for the purpose of promoting the new programme and to introduce the interconnectedness of these distinct themes. Invited were six scholars, as every year, the difference being that some of theme are actively involved in the specialisation. Dr Johan Roeland, for example, was actively involved in the specialisation’s development, while professors Dr Van der Borght and Dr Ganzevoort are currently in charge of two of the specialisation’s educational courses.


2015’s topics and speakers were:

  • Issues involving reconciliation after the apartheid era in South Africa, by Prof. Dr Eddy van der Borcht;

  • Dr Christiane Karrer posed the question how the Bible, and specifically the Old Testament, may inspire peace-building;

  • Dr Johan Roeland discussed core issues involving the influence of new media and journalism in their representation of the religious other;

  • Prof. Dr Ruard Ganzevoort explored the deeply connected notions of religion, trauma, and healing, asking how religious language and symbols help to express, interpret, and transform traumatic suffering.

  • Focusing on modern Russia, dr Katya Tolstoya gave an introductory lecture on religion, ideology, and processing the past in post-soviet societies. For a description, please visit this external link (Dutch);

  • The series was concluded by Prof. Dr Fernando Enns, who gave an introduction of just peace and the relatively new concept of ,,just policing''. For a description, please visit this external link (Dutch).

There were no public lectures in 2019 because the Centre was helping to plan the 2nd Global Mennonite Peacebuilding Conference and Festival

Location and Information

Attendance is free of charge. However, it is highly appreciated if you inform us of your intended attendance via e-mail. (see: 'Contact')


​The lecture room should be accessible from 13.15 hrs. Your timely presence will be much appreciated. If you are unfamiliar with the VU University, one of the University's hosts will be happy to help you find your way. A host can always be found in the main hall.

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

De Boelelaan 1105

1081 HV Amsterdam


The University can be reached by public transport using the following public transport lines:

Metro: Line 51. Stop: De Boelelaan/VU.

Tram: Line 5, 16. Stop: De Boelelaan/VU.

For your convenience, you can download an overview here.