MEDFORD, MA — Tufts University, the Darakjian-Jafarian Chair in Armenian History, the Department of History, and the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (supported by the Ethel Jafarian Duffet Fund) will sponsor the annual Commemoration of the Armenian Genocide at Tufts on Wednesday, April 11, 2012, at 7:00 p.m. The Tufts event will feature a lecture by Prof. Ervin Staub, entitled “Overcoming Evil: Preventing Genocide and Creating Peaceful Societies.” Prof. Staub will be introduced by Ina Baghdiantz McCabe, Professor of History and Darakjian Jafarian Chair of Armenian History at Tufts University.

The commemoration and lecture will take place in Goddard Chapel on Tufts’ Medford, MA, campus. A reception and book signing will follow in the Coolidge Room in nearby Ballou Hall.

Ervin Staub is Professor Emeritus and Founding Director of the doctoral program in the psychology of peace and violence at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. He received his Ph.D. from Stanford, and has taught at Harvard. He has studied the roots of altruism, the origins of genocide, violent conflict, terrorism, and their prevention, psychological recovery, and reconciliation. His books include the two-volume Positive Social Behavior and Morality; The Roots of Evil: the Origins of Genocide and Other Group Violence; The Psychology of Good and Evil: Why Children, Adults and Groups Help and Harm Others; and Overcoming Evil: Genocide, Violent Conflict and Terrorism (2011). A forthcoming book is The Roots of Goodness: The Development of Inclusive Caring, Moral Courage, Altruism Born of Suffering and Active Bystandership.

Staub is past president of the International Society for Political Psychology and of the Society for the Study of Peace, Conflict and Violence. He has conducted many projects in field settings, from promoting altruism in children to seminars/trainings and educational radio projects in Rwanda, Burundi and the Congo to promote psychological recovery and reconciliation, to training active bystanders in schools to prevent harmful behavior by students. He received awards for life-long contributions to peace psychology, for distinguished contributions to political psychology, for distinguished scholarly and practical contributions to social justice, and for work on international and intercultural relations.

Overcoming Evil describes the origins or influences leading to genocide, violent conflict, and terrorism. It identifies principles and practices of prevention, and of reconciliation between groups after violence, or before violence thereby to prevent violence. The book draws on the author’s previous work on all these issues, as well as on research in genocide studies, the study of conflict and of terrorism, and psychological research on group relations, and emphasizes early prevention, when violence-generating conditions are present and a psychological and social evolution toward violence has begun, but there is not yet immediate danger of intense violence. It also describes the work of the author and his associates in real world settings in Africa.

Staub’s work aims to promote knowledge, understanding, and “active bystandership” by leaders and government officials, members of the media, and citizens to prevent violence and create harmonious societies.

More information about the lecture is available by calling 617-489-1610, e-mailing hq@naasr.org, or writing to NAASR, 395 Concord Ave., Belmont, MA 02478; or by contacting Prof. McCabe at ina.mccabe@tufts.edu.

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