Intergroup forgiveness: A congolese perspective

  • Kadiangandu J
  • Mullet E
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This study reports results of a survey about intergroup forgiveness conducted among people from the Kasaï region of the Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaïre). Most of the 500 participants had suffered from the many conflicts in their areas either personally or through injuries inflicted on members of their family. One side of intergroup forgiveness was assessed: requesting forgiveness. A large majority of participants agreed that forgiveness as an intergroup process makes perfect sense; only about 14% considered it impossible for a group of people to ask another group for forgiveness. Participants appeared to have well-articulated conceptions of what such a process would look like. It was conceived above all as a democratic process, as a public process with special deference to the offended group, as a process neither implying nor prohibiting the expression of particular sentiments or emotions, and as a process essentially aimed at reconciliation between the people from the two conflicting groups. In addition, participants agreed that asking for forgiveness should occur not too long after the events.

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  • Joachim Kadima Kadiangandu

  • Etienne Mullet

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