From slaughter to abduction: coming to terms with the past in Australia
University of Melbourne Author/sTHOMPSON, JANNA
AffiliationArts: Department of Philosophy
CitationsThompson, Janna (2003) From slaughter to abduction: coming to terms with the past in Australia.
Access StatusOpen Access
CAPPE : Working paper 2003/4
This paper will concentrate primarily on 'reconciliation' – its adequacy, meaning and requirements. However, the possibility of reconciliation as acknowledgment and recompense for past wrongs depends on an idea of collective responsibility which encompasses responsibility for historical injustices. I will use the debate about apology to explain why citizens have a responsibility for making recompense for historical injustices committed by past officials of their nation. This explanation suggests a particular approach to dealing with these past injustices and a view about what reconciliation should accomplish, and I will relate this approach to the debate about Aboriginal land claims. Finally, I will consider some of the problems that arise when people are asked to comprehend injustices that do not fit common conceptions of harm. The debate about removal of children involves a conceptual difficulty of this kind
KeywordsReconciliation; land rights; Aborigines; Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation; removal of children; culture; land claims; apology
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