Reconciliation in Global Context

Why It Is Needed and How It Works

Edited by Björn Krondorfer

Subjects: Peace, Conflict Resolution, Political Sociology, Religion And Politics, Psychology
Series: SUNY Press Open Access
Hardcover : 9781438471815, 236 pages, November 2018
Paperback : 9781438471808, 236 pages, July 2019

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Table of contents


Introduction: Social and Political Reconciliation
Björn Krondorfer

1. Interpersonal Reconciliation with Groups in Conflict: Israelis and Palestinians, Germans and Jews
Björn Krondorfer

2. Beyond a Dilemma of Apology: Transforming (Veteran) Resistance to Reconciliation in Northern Ireland and South Africa
Wilhelm Verwoerd and Alistair Little

3. Societal Reconciliation through Psychosocial Methods: The Case of Zimbabwe
Joram Tarusarira

4. Bringing Faith into the Practice of Peace: Paths to Reconciliation of Bosnian Muslims
Zilka Spahić Šiljak and Julianne Funk

5. Reconciliation in the Midst of Strife: Palestine
Zeina M. Barakat

6. No Future without a Shared Ethos: Reconciling Palestinian and Israeli Identities
Avner Dinur

7. When Reconciliation Becomes the R-Word: Dealing with the Past in Former Yugoslavia
Heleen Touquet and Ana Milošević

Epilogue. Memory versus Reconciliation
Valerie Rosoux


A transdisciplinary approach to reconciliation practices and policies by an international team of scholars and scholar-practitioners.


When we open the newspaper, watch and listen to the news, or follow social media, we are inundated with reports on old and fresh conflict zones around the world. Less apparent, perhaps, are the many attempts at bringing former adversaries together. Reconciliation in Global Context argues for the merit of reconciliation and for the need of global conversations around this topic. The contributing scholars and scholar-practitioners—who hail from the United States, South Africa, Ireland, Israel, Zimbabwe, Germany, Palestine, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Switzerland, and the Netherlands—describe and analyze examples of reconciliatory practices in different national and political environments. Drawing on direct experiences with reconciliation efforts, from facilitating psychosocial intergroup workshops to critically evaluating official policies, they also reflect on the personal motivations that guide them in this field of engagement. Arranged along an arc that spans from cases describing and interpreting actual processes with groups in conflict to cases in which the conceptual merits and constraints of reconciliation are brought to the fore, the chapters ask hard questions, but also argue for a relational approach to reconciliatory practices. For, in the end, what is important is to embrace a spirit of reconciliation that avoids self-interested action and, instead, advances other-directed care.

This book is freely available in an open access edition thanks to Knowledge Unlatched—an initiative that provides libraries and institutions with a centralized platform to support OA collections and from leading publishing houses and OA initiatives. Learn more at the Knowledge Unlatched website at:, and access the book online at the SUNY Open Access Repository at

Björn Krondorfer is Director of the Martin-Springer Institute and Endowed Professor of Religious Studies at Northern Arizona University. He is the author of Male Confessions: Intimate Revelations and the Religious Imagination.


"This is simply the finest collection of essays on reconciliation processes working at the grassroots and mid-levels of societies I have ever seen. It takes up important issues and moves the discussion forward in each instance." — Robert J. Schreiter, author of Constructing Local Theologies