Is Forgiveness a Good Thing?

Forgiveness: Promise, Possibility and Failure (2012)
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While most scholars focus on the advantages of forgiveness, the negative effects of hasty forgiveness have been largely neglected in the literature. In this essay I shall argue that in certain contexts granting forgiveness to a wrongdoer could be morally questionable, and sometimes it could even be morally wrong. Following Aristotle’s view of emotion, and, in particular, his notion of virtuous anger, I shall claim that appropriate, righteous anger is instrumental for justice, and, as a result, inappropriate, or imprudent forgiveness could be an impediment to justice, or even a license for the continuation of injustice.
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Archival date: 2015-10-01
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