John Gittings

Peace writings
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. (I  have now moved into Oxford).
   Having specialised for many years on China and East Asia, I  have been working on the history of peace thought for the past ten years, publishing a new book, The Glorious Art of Peace (OUP, 2012), and many articles. The paperback edition of my book was  published in October 2018 (see below) with a new preface.  
   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. 

Hiding in Plain Sight: Why we missed the threat of a pandemic -- and other existential risks. (July 2021).

Our perfect storm of crises -- Open Democracy, (Jan. 2019)


Extract from the new preface


Oxford University Press

Paths to Peace in a New Age of War 
(Oxford University Press,  October 2018)
This is a  paperback edition of the book first published in 2012, with a new preface addressing our current dangerous age.
'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