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Forgiveness and Transitional Justice in the Czech Republic.

David, Roman
June 4, 2015

Source: (2006) Journal of Conflict Resolution. 50(3):339-367.

This article examines major theoretical assumptions about forgiveness by victims of human rights
abuses in the context of transitional justice in the Czech Republic. The authors hypothesize that forgiveness
is facilitated by restoring equality between victims and perpetrators, namely: individual, social and
political empowerment of victims; decreasing the superior position of perpetrators, especially through
their punishment; and a repentant gesture of perpetrators towards victims, especially by apologizing. The
results of path analysis confirm that religious belief, individual, social, and political empowerment, punishment,
and apology directly promote forgiveness. This enables the authors to distinguish four types of
forgiveness: religious, reparatory, retributive, and reconciliatory forgiveness. They suggest that policy
interventions that promote forgiveness may not be mutually exclusive as often proposed in the dilemmas
of transitional justice. (author’s abstract)


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