Novel Alliances

The relation of transitional justice to contemporary reconciliation studies is an issue that requires much more attention. Some of the most recent examples of reconciliation (Australia and Canada) have not taken place inside of a transitional justice paradigm, but are the consequence of previously democratic states coming to terms with past crimes. Inasmuch as reconciliation in places such as South Africa and Yugoslavia has targeted transgressions that took place outside of democracy–for instance after apartheid or following a coup d’état–the performance of “settler reconciliation” has a much different set of effects and consequences than its counterparts in transitional nations. These differences must be parsed both with and against the TRC genealogy.

The way in which political performances of reconciliation can distract from the lived conditions of victims is more evident if analysis is shifted from South Africa to the world’s longest running official reconciliation initiative, found in Australia. In…

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Author: Makere

A transplanted New Zealand Scots/Maori academic/grandmother/random singer and sometime activist, my life is shaped by a deep conviction of the necessity for active critical engagement in the multi-faceted global and local crises of being and survival of species that confront us in the 21st century, the urgency of re-visioning the meaning of thriving together, and the contribution of Indigenous knowledge systems to a truly sustainable and just global society.