Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Hostname: page-component-7dc689bd49-bfm8c Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2023-03-20T10:51:02.316Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "useRatesEcommerce": false } hasContentIssue true

Preface

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 January 2012

Nyla R. Branscombe
Affiliation:
University of Kansas
Bertjan Doosje
Affiliation:
Universiteit van Amsterdam
Get access

Summary

History is replete with instances of great harm being committed by one group against another. Regrettably, while engaged in such harm doing, group members tend to perceive their own group's harmful actions as morally justifiable. Such legitimization protects people from the distress and guilt that they might otherwise experience when confronted with the harm done by their ingroup. Indeed, choosing not to legitimize the ingroup's actions and questioning its morality can be seen as traitorous acts. Thus, there are ample reasons to suppose that people will be strongly inclined to protect their social identity by perceiving their group's actions from the vantage point of the “moral high ground.”

Collective guilt, then, might seem to be an unlikely emotion to experience, given that its occurrence requires the self to be seen as a member of a group that has acted immorally. Despite the many impediments to doing so, around the world there have been instances where people have both publicly and privately debated whether their group's treatment of another group was justified or not. Such a reassessment of the legitimacy of the ingroup's actions can focus on historical injustices from long ago, as well as more recent and ongoing forms of intergroup harm doing. Feelings of collective guilt that are widely shared have resulted in formal apologies and other forms of reparations being issued to the harmed group as a means of making amends for the past and its continuing effects in the present.

Type
Chapter
Information
Collective Guilt
International Perspectives
, pp. ix - x
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2004

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

  • Preface
  • Edited by Nyla R. Branscombe, University of Kansas, Bertjan Doosje, Universiteit van Amsterdam
  • Book: Collective Guilt
  • Online publication: 05 January 2012
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139106931.001
Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

  • Preface
  • Edited by Nyla R. Branscombe, University of Kansas, Bertjan Doosje, Universiteit van Amsterdam
  • Book: Collective Guilt
  • Online publication: 05 January 2012
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139106931.001
Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Preface
  • Edited by Nyla R. Branscombe, University of Kansas, Bertjan Doosje, Universiteit van Amsterdam
  • Book: Collective Guilt
  • Online publication: 05 January 2012
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139106931.001
Available formats
×