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What is Violence?


What to do:

  1. Form small groups and give each group 5 cards. They should read through each card and decide for each card whether they consider this to be an example of violence.
  2. After sometime, bring the group back together to discuss a few of their situation cards: Which was the most difficult case for you? What kind of situation is it? Why did you decide that this is violence (or not)? Is violence always physical or can it have other forms? How does it manifest itself?
  3. Following this group discussion, get the individual groups to write down four or five keywords on separate post-it notes of how they define violence.
  4. Once all groups are done they should walk around come together with another group and compare their keywords. They should then all agree on 4 or 5 keywords.
  5. These groups now become one and they go round again and repeat the process.
  6. Come back together and ask the groups to present their keywords and stick them somewhere they can all see.


Get the group all together and discuss the following questions

  • How did you choose your keywords? Was it difficult to get rid of some when you met the other group?
  • Are there words on the wall that you don’t agree with or that are not clear for you? Why?
  • Do these keywords reflect all the violent situations described on the cards that you discussed earlier?
  • Why do you think people use violence in conflicts? In what kind of situations do they become violent?
  • Do you think violence is useful to resolve conflicts? Why (not)?
  • What are some alternatives to violent behaviour in conflicts?
  • What reaction should we have towards violence and/or conflict?

Take it further

Now you have thought about what makes an act violent why not try our activity about ways of finding resolutions to conflict.

Resources Required

Copies of the situation cards for five groups Markers Flipchart paper Small cards or post-it notes, paper and coloured pencils


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