Educator Sarah Federman

Sample of Invited Talks

Atonement for the Holocaust: French National Railways
-The Ralph Bunche Library Speaker Series U.S. Department of State, worldwide U.S. Embassy broadcast.

Engaging Corporations in Transitional Justice: From the Holocaust to US Slavery
-Law & Society Annual Conference

Victims, Heroes, and Perpetrators: in Post-Conflict Contexts
Weatherhead Center for International Affairs
-Harvard University

A Genealogical Approach to Conflict Resolution
-Brandeis University, The Heller School for Social Policy and Management

Conflict Narratives
-Foreign Service Institute, U.S. Department of State

Universities and Slavery: A Reparations Proposal
-Universities Studying Slavery

Teaching Articles


Educators share the challenge of engaging our students with the questions of our time without being limited to the thinking of our time. Drawing broadly on liberal arts and social sciences helps balance these intentions. Understanding and responding to conflict in productive and lasting ways often requires many diverse fields such as history, religious studies, anthropology, sociology, political science, philosophy, literature, area studies, creative writing, business, and language studies. Approaches to conflict have genealogies and these fields help make these intellectual histories visible.

In the classroom, I take inspiration from the Coalition of Essential Schools whose principles include learning to use one’s mind well, less is more, demonstration of mastery, democracy, and equity and trust. Students engage with ideas through student-created simulations, discussions, role plays, independent research, participant observation, and even a flipped classroom. These formats create room for students’ own questions and interests. I especially enjoy role plays because they create space for diverse perspectives.

Classes Taught

Foreign Service Institute, U.S. Department of State
Complex Narratives
Exxon in Indonesia (case study)

College of Public Affairs, University of Baltimore
Negotiation: Theory and Practice,
Approaches to Conflict
Cultural and Ethnic Conflict

Paris Institute of Political Studies (SciencesPo) (France)
Approaches to Conflict in a Globalized World
Conflict Resolution Tools

Grinnell College
The Role of Market Actors in Mass Atrocity (April 2017)

University of Malta
Facilitation/Reflective Practice

Latest Blogs

The Dark Side of Forgiveness

There's a lot of talk about forgiveness these days. The health benefits alone, they say, are astounding. I don't disagree. Hanging on to resentment and blame for years can do a number on our lives and our bodies. Hatred long held can be like a cancer literal or...

North Korea versus North Koreans

​In the spirit of The Language of Conflict, this blog demonstrates in the context of North Korea that how we talk about groups matters. How we frame groups even justifies and legitimize violence even before it has occurred. When you read The New York Times or...

Indonesian “Coup” or “Genocide”?

Back in April, I popped into Grinnell College for a few weeks to teach a course on the role of market actors in mass atrocity and to give a campus-wide presentation on the French National Railways (SNCF) as a case study. The school organized a lovely talk, filling...

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Dr. Sarah Federman

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