Small Steps or Giant Leaps? Defining Reconciliation in the Transition from Conflict in Northern Ireland

Michael Potter

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    The context of Northern Ireland in the transition of conflict has produced a range of efforts to bring about reconciliation. However, definitions and understandings of the nature of reconciliation differ. This paper draws together how reconciliation has been defined in theory in Northern Ireland and elsewhere, examines some models of practice in the light of that theory and illustrates the process of reconciliation through general initiatives in Northern Ireland and specific projects seeking to reconcile at community level. It is concluded that, while political and public processes can set a context and space for engagement to take place, reconciliation is fundamentally about personal encounter and relationship, which have to take place in a range of settings and at all levels of a society that has experienced conflict.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)41-55
    JournalAustralasian Journal of Human Security
    Volume2
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2006

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    abstract = "The context of Northern Ireland in the transition of conflict has produced a range of efforts to bring about reconciliation. However, definitions and understandings of the nature of reconciliation differ. This paper draws together how reconciliation has been defined in theory in Northern Ireland and elsewhere, examines some models of practice in the light of that theory and illustrates the process of reconciliation through general initiatives in Northern Ireland and specific projects seeking to reconcile at community level. It is concluded that, while political and public processes can set a context and space for engagement to take place, reconciliation is fundamentally about personal encounter and relationship, which have to take place in a range of settings and at all levels of a society that has experienced conflict.",
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    Small Steps or Giant Leaps? Defining Reconciliation in the Transition from Conflict in Northern Ireland. / Potter, Michael.

    In: Australasian Journal of Human Security, Vol. 2, No. 2, 2006, p. 41-55.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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    AB - The context of Northern Ireland in the transition of conflict has produced a range of efforts to bring about reconciliation. However, definitions and understandings of the nature of reconciliation differ. This paper draws together how reconciliation has been defined in theory in Northern Ireland and elsewhere, examines some models of practice in the light of that theory and illustrates the process of reconciliation through general initiatives in Northern Ireland and specific projects seeking to reconcile at community level. It is concluded that, while political and public processes can set a context and space for engagement to take place, reconciliation is fundamentally about personal encounter and relationship, which have to take place in a range of settings and at all levels of a society that has experienced conflict.

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