Conflict, Injury, and Transformation

Marc Gopin

in Holy War, Holy Peace

Published in print April 2002 | ISBN: 9780195146509
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199834235 | DOI:
Conflict, Injury, and Transformation

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Addresses the role of memories of personal and collective injury – the scars of conflict and violence – in retarding peacemaking processes. The important role of organized religion in this kind of “perpetuated mourning,” and its role in conflict generation and avoidance, and self‐examination and self‐judgment, is discussed. It is noted that systems of coping with ultimate loss must become part of any conflict resolution between enemies, and that although each community involved must accomplish this separately, peacemakers should coordinate the process. Two things are needed to disengage a group from the need to be violent: manufactured injury (often based on the political ambitions of leaders) must be separated from actual injury; and manufactured injuries that are rooted in weak internal self‐conceptions must be replaced by a strong sense of self that does not need injury to survive. In the case of the Israel/Palestine conflict, these processes are as important for Jews in relation to the Holocaust as for Palestinians in relation to the loss of their country in 1948.

Keywords: conflict; conflict generation; conflict resolution; Holocaust; injury; Israel; manufactured injury; Palestine; peacemaking; perpetuated mourning

Chapter.  4906 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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