History and collective responsibility

Australasian Journal of Philosophy 78 (3):346 – 359 (2000)
In this paper I will argue that contemporary non-Aboriginal Australians can collectively be held responsible for past injustices committed against the Aboriginal peoples of this land. An examination of the role played by history in determining the nature of the present reveals both the temporal extension of the Australian community that confronts the question of responsibility for historical injustice and the ways in which we continue to participate in those same injustices. Because existing injustices suffered by indigenous Australians are essentially continuous with the racist history of the invasion of the Australian continent and dispossession of the Australian Aboriginal peoples, we may be held responsible for the wrongs committed in the course of that history.
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    Gal Gerson (2006). The Asymmetry Between Apology and Forgiveness. Contemporary Political Theory 5 (4):447-468.
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