John Gittings

Recent articles and interviews
Journal articles
Newspaper articles
Family links

After teaching at the University of Westminster I worked at The Guardian (UK) for twenty years as assistant foreign editor and chief foreign leader-writer (1983-2003).   With my wife and constant partner for over 50 years, Aelfthryth Gittings (who died in December 2012), we brought up four sons and travelled widely in South America, Asia and Europe. In 2001-03 we set up The Guardian's first staff office on the Chinese mainland, in Shanghai. Afterwards we moved to Shipton under Wychwood in Oxfordshire, becoming active in local historical research, CND, and the Labour Party.
   Having specialised for many years on China and East Asia, I am now working on the history of peace thought, and published a book on this subject in 2012 (see below).  I am a Research Associate at the China Institute, School of Oriental & African Studies, London University, and an Associate Editor of the Oxford International Encyclopaedia of Peace. In November 2015 I  served as a judge on the International People's Tribunal on 1965 Crimes against Humanity in Indonesia, and co-edited the Final Report.

New articles:

A History of Nuclear Threats

Daniel Ellsberg on the Doomsday Machine -- Review

From the archive, 1970: My Cold War "Friend"

The Complexity of the Cultural Revolution: 50 Years after it was launched by Mao Zedong.

INDONESIA 1965 MASSACRE: Final Report of the International People's Tribunal on Crimes Against Humanity, Indonesia 1965: 20 July 2016

The Black Hole of Bali (1990 Report by John Gittings 25 years after the massacre)

New essay: "Peace in History"

Philosophy and Peace

Shakespeare and Tolstoy on Peace and War

WorldWarOneWatch Nos. 1-6: A series of articles monitoring coverage of the First World War anniversary


New E-book editions

New Publication: 
From the Iliad to Iraq 
(Oxford University Press, 2012)
'We need all the insights collected in Gittings's impressive book and more, enriching our culture with more capacity to cooperate, empathize, reconcile and resolve conflict.' (Johan Galtung, International Affairs)
“This is  a wonderful study of the subtler “arts of peace"….  wide ranging, informed, and  informative”.  (Oliver Richmond, Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology).

"Eminently readable, this book would make a great gift for the activist and sympathetic non-activist alike, providing inspiration from the glorious heritage of peace activism down the ages." (Peace News, Dec. 2012).


D. Previous articles
H. Obituaries