Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer portrait

Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer

Associate Professor
OEC 469
(651) 962-5336
Toll Free
(800) 328-6819, Ext. 2-5336
(651) 962-5310
Mail # 4059
University of St. Thomas
2115 Summit Avenue
St. Paul, MN 55105-1096

Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer, M.Div., associate professor of justice and peace studies at St. Thomas, is a nationally recognized teacher, writer, public speaker, and activist committed to nonviolent social change. He has focused his life and work on showing linkages between faith and critical political, economic and social issues. He has written extensively on issues of hunger, poverty, U.S. foreign policy, the historical Jesus, problems of God and violence, and authentic hope. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in political science from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, and a Master of Divinity degree from Union Theological Seminary in New York City.

Jack served as National Program Coordinator of the Politics of Food Program with Clergy & Laity Concerned from 1977 to 1981. He directed the Minnesota-based Hunger and Justice Project for the American Lutheran Church and Lutheran Church in America from 1982 to 1984. He and his wife Sara co-directed a house of studies in Managua, Nicaragua for the Center for Global Education, a program of Augsburg College from 1984-1986. Currently, he is active in the national movement to close the U.S. Army School of the Americas (SOA; renamed the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation: WHISC or WHINSEC), a U.S. military training school that trains Latin American soldiers and has been linked to human rights atrocities.

At St. Thomas, Jack teaches JPST 250: Introduction to Justice and Peace Studies; JPST 280: Active Nonviolence; THEO 421: Theologies of Justice and Peace; JPST 355: Public Policy Analysis and Advocacy; and occasional topics courses.

He is the author of numerous articles and books on faith, hunger, the arms race and U.S. foreign policy. His books include:

Hunger for Justice:  the Politics of Food and Faith (Orbis Books, 1980),
The Politics of Compassion (Orbis Books, 1986),
War Against The Poor:  Low Intensity Conflict and Christian Faith (Orbis Books, 1989),
Brave New World Order:  Must We Pledge Allegiance (Orbis Books, 1992),
Families Valued:  Parenting and Politics for the Good of All Children (Friendship Press, 1996),
School of Assassins (Orbis Books, 1997),
Harvest of Cain--his first novel (EPICA, 2001),
Jesus Against Christianity:  Reclaiming the Missing Jesus (Trinity Press International, 2001)
School of Assassins:  Guns, Greed and Globalization (Orbis Books, 2001). 
Is Religion Killing Us:  Violence in the Bible and the Quran (Trinity Press International, 2003).
Worship in the Spirit of Jesus: Theology, Liturgy, and Songs Without Violence (with Bret Hesla--Pilgrim Press, 2005).
Saving Christianity from Empire (Continuum, 2005).
Authentic Hope:  It’s the End of the World as We Know It, but Soft Landings Are Possible (Orbis Books, 2012).

Jack has three daughters. He lives in Minneapolis with his wife Sara and is active in the faith-based Community of St. Martin.

J-Term 2017 Courses

J-Term 2017 Courses
Course - Section Title Days Time Location

Spring 2017 Courses

Spring 2017 Courses
Course - Section Title Days Time Location
JPST 280 - 01 Active Nonviolence - T - R - - - 0955 - 1135 SCB 329
CRN: 20460 4 Credit Hours Instructor: Jack A. Nelson-Pallmeyer Active nonviolence as a means for societal defense and social transformation analyzed through case studies of actual nonviolent movements, examining their political philosophy and how this philosophy is reflected in their methods and strategies. Examples of possible case studies include: Mahatma Gandhi's movement for a free India, Danish resistance to Nazi occupation, the struggle for interracial justice in the United State, an integrated Canada-to-Cuba peace-and-freedom walk, the campaign to close the U.S. Army School of the Americas (WHINSEC), fair trade movements, and the Honeywell Project. The course emphasizes the theory and active practice of nonviolence as well as oral histories of successful nonviolent movements. Usually offered every semester.

Schedule Details

Location Time Day(s)
JPST 355 - D01 Public Policy Analysis & Advoc - T - R - - - 1525 - 1700 OEC 208
CRN: 21068 4 Credit Hours Instructor: Jack A. Nelson-Pallmeyer In this class students will investigate how and why particular policies are developed, proposed, adopted, and implemented; will explore how social values shape and impact public policies; and will learn how to frame issues in ways that allow for more effective advocacy. The class will examine the relative power of diverse corporate and non-profit sectors in influencing policy debates and outcomes, including the role of think tanks. Students will analyze the limitations and strengths of diverse approaches to advocacy ranging from third-party appeals and solidarity efforts to elite decision makers, as well as the prospects for a politics of agency rooted in citizen-centered politics in which people mobilize to meet the needs of their communities. The course will integrate basic theory, interaction with public policy analysts and advocates, personal experience in persuasive advocacy, and case studies focused on issues such as climate change, economic inequality, land-food-hunger, and approaches to health care. Assignments will introduce students to various tools for persuasive advocacy and allow them to develop skill sets for using them.

Schedule Details

Location Time Day(s)
JPST 473 - 01 Vocational Seminar See Details * *
CRN: 20357 0 Credit Hours Instructor: Jack A. Nelson-Pallmeyer Students are required to take this seminar during the semester they are doing an internship of 7-10 hrs/wk. The seminar meets three times (at the beginning, middle, and end of the semester), to provide opportunities for those engaged in individual placements to get peer support for their discernment process. At its core is a reflective process designed to lead students to: a deeper understanding of the practical means of working for social change; an evaluation of their internship experience (both in terms of gaining a deeper understanding of their own vocation and a better understanding of the type of institutions they are working with); and applying these insights to future course work and career planning.

Schedule Details

Location Time Day(s)
OEC 2081715-190006 Feb '17
OEC 2081715-190020 Feb '17
OEC 2081715-190006 Mar '17
OEC 2081715-190027 Mar '17
OEC 2081715-1900M - - - - - -

Summer 2017 Courses

Summer 2017 Courses
Course - Section Title Days Time Location