How universal is UN 'peace'? : a comparative linguistic analysis of the United Nations and Giryama (Kenya) concepts of 'peace'
Title: How universal is UN 'peace'? : a comparative linguistic analysis of the United Nations and Giryama (Kenya) concepts of 'peace'
Citation: International journal of language and culture, 2015, Vol. 2, No. 2, pp. 194-218
It is now commonly accepted that, for the sake of international peace, the provisions of the UN Charter (originally devised to regulate interstate wars) should be interpreted so as to allow for intrastate interference as well. Yet the UN Charter does not explicitly state what the term peace refers to. It seems that the concept underpinning this term is so much the norm that only deviations from it are marked and therefore noteworthy or definable. Still, in view of the wide array of UN peacekeeping missions all over the world, a clear notion of ‘peace’ could make an important contribution to the success of these missions. In view of this, the paper addresses two questions: what lies behind the concept of ‘peace’ embedded in UN discourse, and how internationally salient is it? To provide the necessary perspective, we undertake a comparative analysis of the UN and Giryama (Kenya) ‘peace’ concepts. The analysis aims to highlight those aspects of Giryama and UN ‘peace’ that are characteristically ‘socially meaningful’ and concludes by highlighting convergences and divergences between them.
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