Research essay

Please write a research essay on one of the essay topics listed below. There are 69 essay topics divided into 6 broad research areas.

 

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Essay topics

China

In historical context, how did Confucius (551-479) in his Analects try to restrict or limit war? What was his legacy?
In historical context, what did Mozi (Mo Tzu) (480-390 BCE) teach about nonviolence and peace in ancient Chinese society? What was his impact and legacy?
What did Mencius (372-298 BCE) teach about nonviolence and peace in ancient Chinese society? What was his impact and legacy?
Regarding nonviolence and peace, how did Mozi (Mo Tzu) and Mencius critique and advance the thought of Confucius?
What did the ancient text of Tao-Te-Ching (Daodejing) teach about nonviolence and peace in ancient Chinese society? What was its impact and legacy?
According to Zhuangzi (Chuang-Tzu) (369-286 BCE), in fifth-century BCE China a variety of voices urged an end to violence. What was the nature and impact of these pacifist impulses?
What does Taoist thought teach about peace as seen in the Tao-te-ching (Daodejing) and Zhuangzi (Chuang-Tzu) texts?
What were the peace teachings of the Dialecticians in the 4th and 3rd centuries BCE in China, and what was their legacy?
What peaceable contributions did the Han dynasty (206 BCE-220 CE) make in China? What was their longer range impact?
How did Buddhist pacifism influence China between 500 and 900 CE?
What peaceable contributions did the Ming dynasty (1368-1644) make in China? What was their longer range impact?

 

India

Why are the Upanishads (c. 800-200 BCE) important in the transmission of thoughts on nonviolence and peace in India?
Please trace the development of the concept of ahimsa in India between 600 BCE and 1600 CE.
What was the “peace revolution” of Ashoka (Asoka), and why was it important?
What is the place, importance, and influence of ahimsa in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra?
What is early Jain teaching on peace and nonviolence, and what is its legacy in India?
How did Buddhist and/or Jain influence in India’s Gupta empire (320-484 CE) make society less violent and more peaceable?
How did Buddhism act to reduce violence with and among the Mongols?
How did Buddhism act as a force for peace in Tibet before 1600?

 

Ancient Mediterranean and Middle East

Who was Cyrus the Great and why is he significant? In terms of peace, what efforts and contributions did he make, and what methods did he use?
What was Plato’s vision and recipe for societal peace? What are its strengths and weaknesses?
What was Aristotle’s vision and recipe for societal peace? What are its strengths and weaknesses?
What was the Stoic vision and recipe for societal peace? What influence did it have on the ancient Hellenistic and Roman world?
What peaceable contributions did the ancient Roman Empire make in the Mediterranean region in the years 27 BCE-217 CE? What was their longer range impact?
In historical context, what do the ancient Hebrew 8th century BCE prophets Amos and Hosea say about personal, local, and international peace?
In historical context, what do the ancient Hebrew 8th century BCE prophets Isaiah and Micah say about personal, local, and international peace?
What was the Essenes’ vision and recipe for peace? Why is it important?
What are leading ideas about nonviolence and peace in the Talmud? What is their impact?
What was the teaching of the great Jewish rabbi Moses Maimonides (1135-1204) on peace? What was his impact and legacy?
In historical context, what was the teaching and practice of Jesus regarding nonviolence and peace?
In historical context, what are visions and methods for peace in the New Testament?
What were early Christian views of war and peacemaking between 100 and 313?
How did Christianity’s entrance into political power influence its perspectives on war and peace between 313 and 451?
What was the historical context and content of Augustine’s (354-430) Just War theory? Evaluate its impact and legacy?

 

Muslim World

What are visions of, and methods toward, peace in the Qur’an?
In what ways did the Prophet Muhammad try to bring about a peaceful society?
What was the nature of Muslim, Jewish, and Christian co-existence in Baghdad between 800 and 1100? What made their co-existence possible?
What was the nature of Muslim, Jewish, and Christian co-existence in Spain between 750 and 1200? What made their co-existence possible?
What was the Sufi vision and understanding of peace before 1500? What was its impact?
What was the great Sufi thinker ‘Abd al-Qadir al-Jilani’s (1077-1166) vision for peace?
What was the great Sufi poet Rumi’s (1207-1273) vision for peace?
What does the great Muslim thinker Ibn Khaldun (1332-1406) say about war and peace?
How did Mughal emperor Akbar (1540-1605) attempt to make peace in India? How successful were these attempts?
What was the relationship between trade and peace in West Africa before 1500?
What was the Manden Charter in West Africa and why is it significant? How did it relate to peace?

 

Europe

What was the context and content of Gratian’s (12th century) thinking on the Just War theory in his Decretum? Evaluate its impact and legacy.
Who were the Cathars and what did they teach regarding nonviolence and peace? What was their impact and legacy?
Who were the Waldensians and what did they teach regarding nonviolence and peace? What was their impact and legacy?
Who were the Lollards and what did they teach regarding nonviolence and peace? What was their impact and legacy?
Who was Peter Chelcicky (1390-1460) and what did he teach regarding nonviolence and peace? What was his impact and legacy?
Who was Erasmus (1465-1536) and what did he teach regarding nonviolence and peace? What was his impact and legacy?
Who were the Anabaptists? What did they teach regarding nonviolence and peace? What was their legacy?
Who was the Anabaptist Michael Sattler (1490-1527) and what did he teach regarding nonviolence and peace? What was his impact and legacy?
Who was the Anabaptist Pilgram Marpeck (1495-1556) and what did he teach regarding nonviolence and peace? What was his impact and legacy?
Who was the Anabaptist Menno Simons (1495-1561) and what did he teach regarding nonviolence and peace? What was his impact and legacy?
Compare and contrast the peace positions of Michael Sattler and Pilgram Marpeck. What are their strengths and weaknesses?
What were various perspectives on war, peace, and church-state relations among early Anabaptist thinkers? What are their strengths and weaknesses?
To what degree did the Mennonites between 1560 and 1700 follow and diverge from the peace teachings and practice of their Anabaptist forebears?
Who were the Hutterites? In historical context, what was their teaching and practice regarding nonviolence and peace up to 1700?
What was the message and practice of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) regarding nonviolence and peace in the first century of their existence (1650-1750)?
Who was the Quaker George Fox (1624-1691) and what did he teach regarding nonviolence and peace? Why is he important and what was his legacy?
Many consider Hugo Grotius (1583-1645) the founder of international law. In historical context, what was his contribution and legacy?
How did international trade contribute to peacemaking in Europe between 1500 and 1700?

 

 

The Americas

Who was Bartolomé de las Casas of Spain and Latin America, and why is he significant? What was his impact and legacy in terms of peace?
Who was Antonio de Vieira of Portugal and Brazil, and why is he significant? What was his impact and legacy in terms of peace?
Who was the Quaker William Penn (1644-1718) and why is he important regarding nonviolence and peace? Why is he important and what was his legacy?
Who was the Quaker John Woolman (1720-1772) and what did he teach regarding nonviolence and peace? Why is he important and what was his legacy?
What was the Iroquois Confederacy and why was it significant?
What is the relationship between human rights and peace? Please support your argument with examples from history before 1700.

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