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  • Roundtable Breakfast - Understanding and Addressing Humiliation

Roundtable Breakfast - Understanding and Addressing Humiliation

  • Thursday, December 02, 2010
  • 8:00 AM - 9:59 AM
  • John Jay College of Criminal Justice: 899 Tenth Avenue (at West 59th Street), Room 630, NYC


  • The event is free and open to anyone interested in the topic. Please register in order to attend.

Registration is closed

The Association for Conflict Resolution
of Greater New York


The CUNY Dispute Resolution Consortium
at John Jay College

present the

Monthly NYC-DR Roundtable Breakfast


Dr. Evelin Lindner will speak about about honor, dignity, and humiliation as themes that are salient at the individual micro level as much as at the macro level. From domestic violence and bullying in schools to the economic crisis and global terrorism, honor and dignity are being hurt in many ways and on many levels. What makes Lindner's approach unique is that she uses a large-scale geo-historical lens to understand these dynamics. 

The human rights ideal of equality in dignity for all is historically rather recent and represents a profound shift in the ways humiliation is being defined and felt. To give a particularly stark example, for practitioners in the field of conflict resolution, it is crucial to have a deep understanding of how a person feels who defends humiliated family honor with so-called honor killing, and why another person is appalled and convinced that honor killing represents a case of double humiliation. As path out of this conundrum, Lindner advocates the principle of unity in diversity, the "Gandhi way" of respecting-but-not-appeasing, and the "Mandela way" of understanding-but-not-condoning.

Evelin Lindner is a transdisciplinary social scientist and humanist, covering a range from neuroscience to political science and philosophy. She holds two Ph.D.s, one in medicine and the other in psychology. She is the Founding President of Human Dignity and Humiliation Studies, a global network of academics and practitioners (HumanDHS, and a professor at the upcoming World Dignity University. Lindner lives and teaches globally, affiliated, among others, with Columbia University in New York, the University of Oslo, Norway, and the Maison des Sciences de l'Homme in Paris. 

In 1996, she designed her doctoral research project on the concept of humiliation and its role in war and genocide. German history served as starting point. It is often assumed that the humiliation of the Germans through the Versailles Treaties after World War I was partly responsible for World War II and the Holocaust. It seemed therefore important to understand the nature of humiliation and how it is related to the occurrence of war and mass violence. 

From 1997-2001, Lindner carried out this research, interviewing over 200 people who were either implicated in or knowledgeable about the mass killings in Rwanda, Somalia, and Nazi Germany. Since 2001, Lindner has developed HumanDHS as an international platform for further work on dignity and humiliation. She continues with her personal research and is working on a theory of humiliation. Her research indicates, that, indeed, the dynamics of humiliation may be at the core of not only terrorism, war, and genocide, but also of global social and ecological sustainability. Understanding the role of humiliation is crucial if the world community is to succeed in overcoming the crises it currently faces.

Lindner is the author of three books published by Praeger:
1.    Making Enemies: Humiliation and International Conflict, which was honored as a Choice 2007 Outstanding Academic Title and characterized as path-breaking.
2.    In 2009, her second book, Emotion and Conflict: How Human Rights Can Dignify Emotion and Help Us Wage Good Conflict, was published. Both books begin with a Foreword by Morton Deutsch.
3.    In 2010, her third book was published, with a Foreword by Archbishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu, Gender, Humiliation, and Global Security: Dignifying Relationships from Love, Sex, and Parenthood to World Affairs.
See her other publications on

Association for Conflict Resolution - Greater New York Chapter


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