US professor sees cultural diplomacy as peace solution

The use of violence to curb violence is a dangerous trend and through such means violence can’t be curbed, as only people-to-people contact and cultural diplomacy can bring long-lasting peace, said renowned American professor and teacher of digital video production Dr Brian Bailey.
The researcher and his wife, Heather Layton, are on a visit to Karachi on the invitation of two Pakistani members of the International Visitors Leadership Programme (IVLP) – one of US State Department’s professional exchange programmes. Layton is also a multimedia, interdisciplinary artist and a senior arts lecturer in the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Rochester in Rochester, New York, US, where she teaches courses in painting, mixed media, performance art and social intervention. She wants the world to use arts to resolve conflicts.
Both the professionals are visiting local universities and meeting with faculty members, students and common people.
“When we decided to visit Pakistan, many of our friends suggested not to go there, as most people are extremists and kill American indiscriminately. But it is not true as people here are very loving and want to get connected with the American citizens. So it is better to change the perspective on either side, as so is with Pakistanis who are thinking on same lines,” said Bailey.
He said that recently both of them had started conflict resolution sessions in Nagaland, India and the same will be started in Pakistan also. Talking with Pakistan Today, the professor said that their goal was to sensitise the people on changing perspectives and the media can play a very positive role.
Bailey is working as an assistant professor of education at the Nazareth College in Rochester, New York, US, where he teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in Adolescent Education. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree from the Cornell University in 1992 and went on to complete his Master’s Degree in Educational Technology from the Nazareth College of Rochester in 2000. He received a PhD. in Teaching and Curriculum at the University of Rochester’s Warner Graduate School of Education and Human Development in 2009.
Bailey’s research focuses on the intersection of school-based curriculum and contemporary youth culture, particularly when adolescents use digital media art to create short films, music videos, animation, documentaries, etc in school. The American professor is the co-founder and co-director of The Rochester Teen Film Festival and Summer Camp, both of which grew out of his research on Youth Digital Media Production and Literacy. Prior to the Nazareth College, Bailey held faculty appointments at The College of Saint Rose in Albany in New York and Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut.
Bailey has presented his research internationally at United Arab Emirates University, Zayed University (UAE), Sultan Qaboos University (Oman) and Nagaland University (India). He has presented papers at several national conferences in cities, including Albany, Los Angeles, St Louis, Chicago and New Orleans.
“To bring about a positive change, we don’t need many people and only a few people can bring a tremendous impact, for which we have started a mutual blog where we will be posting on different topics, which may help us to in bringing a change,” he added.