Performing Absolution Narratives in Restorative Justice

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Based on Goffman's notion of people performing contextually preferred identities, a qualitative study of victim–offender mediation shows that the roles adopted in mediation sessions reflect a moral assessment of the situation. This assessment is structured by a confessional ethos, including demanding remorse from the perpetrator and mercy from the victim. The powerful idea of confession and forgiveness as liberating and emancipative is seen as part of a Foucauldian, neoliberal effort working toward the same end as regular criminal proceedings: creating law-abiding citizens. However, creating law-abiding citizens is not encouraged through judiciary processes, sentencing and imprisonment, but by stimulating an inner, panoptic judge of conscience, motivating the perpetrator to remain within the law.
Original languageEnglish
JournalRestorative Justice
Volume3
Issue number1 Routledge
Pages (from-to)28-48
Number of pages21
ISSN2050-4721
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 Sep 2015

    Research areas

  • The Faculty of Law - Restorative justice , Mediation, Religious aspects, Goffman, Foucault, Interactionism, Neoliberalism, Pastoral power

ID: 131355419