1st Edition

Reconciliation after War Historical Perspectives on Transitional Justice

Edited By Rachel Kerr, Henry Redwood, James Gow Copyright 2021
    362 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    362 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This edited volume examines a range of historical and contemporary episodes of reconciliation and anti-reconciliation in the aftermath of war.

    Reconciliation is a concept that resists easy definition. At the same time, it is almost invariably invoked as a goal of post-conflict reconstruction, peacebuilding and transitional justice. This book examines the considerable ambiguity and controversy surrounding the term and, crucially, asks what has reconciliation entailed historically? What can we learn from past episodes of reconciliation and anti-reconciliation? Taken together, the chapters in this volume adopt an interdisciplinary approach, focused on the question of how reconciliation has been enacted, performed and understood in particular historical episodes, and how that might contribute to our understanding of the concept and its practice. Rather than seek a universal definition, the book focuses on what makes each case of reconciliation unique, and highlights the specificity of reconciliation in individual contexts.

    This book will be of much interest to students of transitional justice, conflict resolution, human rights, history and International Relations.

    1. Introduction: A genealogy of reconciliation

    Henry Redwood and Rachel Kerr

    Part I: The Distant Past

    2. Remembering What One Has Forgotten: Athenian Reconciliation After War (Crimes)

    Robin Osborne

    3. Jesuit Peace-Making in the Kingdom of Naples: Reconciliation in Early-Modern Europe

    Stephen Cummins

    4. Reconciliation and Oblivion in the English Republics

    Imogen Peck

    Part II: The Longue Durée

    5. 1917 In 2017: A ‘Useless’ Past? Remembering and Forgetting the Bolshevik Revolution

    Natasha Kuhrt

    6. One Hundred Years of Reconciliation: Fractured Memories o the Finnish Civil War

    Teemu Laulainen

    7. The Paradox of Reconciliation: Early Post-War Chinese-Japanese Experience in Regional and Comparative Perspective

    Daqing Yang

    8. There Once Was A Country: The Construction and Deconstruction of Yugoslavia

    Jelena Subotic

    9. The Unreconciled US Civil War

    James Gow and Rana Ibrahem

    Part III: Alternative Perspectives

    10. Religion and Reconciliation: Power, Practice and Rejections of the Truth and Reconciliation Project in South African and Bosnian Contexts

    George R. Wilkes

    11. Burying the Hatchet: Exploring Indigenous Practice of Reconciliation Among Pastoralist Communities in East Africa

    Anne Kubai

    12. If You Are Not Careful, Reconciliation Will Be Spreading All Over The Country’: Reconciliation in Britain’s Humanitarian Aid to Post-War Germany, 1919-1925

    Ben Holmes

    13. The Art of Healing and Reconciliation in Canada

    Jonathan Dewar

    Part IV: Challenging Conventional Wisdom

    14. Reconciled to What? Community Relations and the Anti-Politics of Reconciliation in Northern Ireland

    Jonathan Evershed

    15. Reconciliation Without Transitional Justice? The Challenges of Imposed Reconciliation in Spain

    Rosa Ana Alija-Fernandez and Olga Martin-Ortega

    16. Unhealed Wounds: The Limits of German Reconciliation in the Case of Distomo, Greece

    Olga Burkhardt-Vetter

    17. Reconciliation As An Ongoing Political Project: The Case of Japan

    Madoka Futamura

    18. Epilogue

    Henry Redwood


    Rachel Kerr is a Reader in International Relations and Contemporary War in the Department of War Studies and co-Director of the War Crimes Research Group at King’s College London, UK.

    Henry Redwood is a Lecturer in International Relations in the Department of War Studies, King’s College London, UK.

    James Gow is Professor of International Peace and Security and Co-Director of the War Crimes Research Group at King’s College London, UK, and Non-Resident Scholar, Liechtenstein Institute, Princeton University, USA.