Nonviolence Studies Interdisciplinary Minor

Nonviolence is a weapon of strong.
--Mohandas K. Gandhi

Program Description

The interdisciplinary minor in Nonviolence Studies provides our students an opportunity to learn about the philosophical, cultural, and literary traditions of nonviolence and the histories of nonviolent change. The minor imparts a systematic understanding of nonviolence as a core human virtue, a positive force that is grounded in courage, compassion and conciliation, and is key to creating a peaceful and sustainable future for the humanity.

This understanding is especially critical given the many faceted problems of violence and war. Students taking this minor will feel inspired to become innovators working toward promoting human dignity, advancing social justice and nurturing ecological harmony. At the same time, they will also gain the ability to develop and apply nonviolent methods for resolving conflicts.

Designed to serve as a complimentary emphasis to any major, this interdisciplinary minor will provide students additional career options such as business sector jobs in human resources, industrial and labor relations, and conflict management; and public sector positions in community service or social work agencies, correctional institutions, and government departments. Other potential career paths exist in the non-profit sector including international agencies, and in non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Moreover, the minor will particularly well serve the professional needs of the future school teachers.


Effective Fall 2018, the curriculum for the minor includes two required courses--core and capstone-(6 units) and four support courses (12 units), that is, a total of six courses (18 units) as follows. Please note many of the courses below also fulfill GE requirements and will double count for the minor.

Required Core: 6 Units

The following two core courses focus on an in-depth and interdisciplinary understanding of the principles, philosophies, and methods of nonviolence. These courses are designed to provide students a novel perspective on the history of nonviolent change, facilitate their explorations of nonviolent philosophy and action, provide them the ability to apply these methods to contemporary social settings, and equip them with skills in problem solving through nonviolent methods and peaceful processes.

Foundation core course
HST 4433 Nonviolence in the Modern World (3)
(Also fulfils C3/D4)
Capstone course
CLS 4490 Seminar in Nonviolence Studies (3)

Elective Support Courses: 12 Units

Students will take four additional courses (12 units) as specified from the following three categories.

ENG 2882 War and Peace in Literature (3)
(Also fulfils C2B)

HST 3306 Modern India (3)
(Also fulfils C3/D4)

PHL 3060 Philosophy and Religion of India (3)

PLS 3551 International Conflict, War and Peace (3)

CLS 4100 The United Nations and the World (3)
(Also fulfils C3/D4)

EWS 3800 Women in Global Perspective (3)
(Also fulfils D4)

EWS 4010 ContemporaryAfrican American Studies (3)
(Also fulfils D4)

EWS 4020 Contemporary Chicano/Latino Studies (3)
(Also fulfils D4)

HST 3370 History of California (3)
(Also fulfils C3)

HST 4407 History of American Workers (3)
(Also fulfils D4)

DAN 2020 World Dance and Cultures (3)
(Also fulfils C1)

KIN 2700 Stress Management for Healthy Living (3)
(Also fulfils area E)

SW 3322 Family Violence (3)

Faculty Advisor and Coordinator for the Minor

The minor is offered by the College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences and is coordinated by Dr. Aishwary Kumar, Director of Ahimsa Center and Dr. Tara Sethia, emerita professor of history --who also serve as the advisors for the Minor.
For questions please visit our Contact page.