Palestinian Political Forgiveness: Agency, Permissibility, and Prospects

Social Theory and Practice 4 (36):661-688 (2010)

Glen Pettigrove
University of Glasgow
The Israel-Palestine conflict stands at the heart of tensions in the Middle East and, more than that, at the heart of tensions between the West and the Islamic world. It is sometimes suggested that the resolution of this conflict will require forgiveness on the part of both Palestine and Israel. However, what such forgiveness would involve has not been adequately explored. Our aim is to remedy this gap in the discussion. Our consideration of Palestinian political forgiveness will address three principal questions. The first is a definitional question: what is political forgiveness? Our answer to this question will involve, among other things, articulating an account of collective emotions. The second question is an agential question: is there a Palestinian agent capable of forgiving Israel? Finally, there is the normative question: should Palestinians forgive Israel?
Keywords Political Forgiveness  Israel  Palestine
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