Through the Eyes of the ‘Other’: Interpreting Peace and What Is Required for Building a Sustainable Peace

  • Cathy Bollaert
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Compromise after Conflict book series (PSCAC)


This chapter employs a worldview lens for exploring how peace is interpreted across the diverse groups in South Africa. It uncovers eleven core themes which reflect the structural and relational components of building sustainable peace. Significantly, these pillars resonated with different worldview attributes which was useful for shifting the discourse surrounding conflict analysis and reconciliation in South Africa from one which essentialises and reinforces race-based identities to one that has a deeper reach than race and is more contextually relevant. The chapter also shows that when a person’s own interpretation of peace was not demonstrated in the actions and behaviour of the ‘other’ or when a person’s actions did not seem to make sense, it reinforced existing stereotypes of the ‘other’ and hardened intergroup boundaries.


Sustainable peace Peace-building Multicultural societies Intergroup boundaries Identity 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cathy Bollaert
    • 1
  1. 1.Ulster UniversityBelfastUK

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