Source: (2008) Ethics & International Affairs. 22(4):421-428.

Apology, forgiveness, reparations, restitution, truth-telling, acknowledgment, restorative and retributive justice, trust, repair, reconciliation: How do these processes relate to one another, how do they differ, and how do they operate at different social levels, from individuals to polities? Are they all even appropriate as responses to different types of wrongdoing? Three recent works by philosophers Charles L. Griswold, Nick Smith, and Margaret Urban Walker help to illuminate these closely related concepts, today’s coin of the realm in discussions of transitional politics. Despite the fact that each author tends to focus on one process in particular, all eleven of the processes listed above emerge in each account in one way or another, demonstrating the degree to which they are intertwined in what is a complex whole. In addition, two of the books discuss processes or forces that appear less consistently in the transitional literature: hope, in Margaret Urban Walker’s study; narrative, in Charles Griswold’s; and resentment and trust in both.