Forgiving as emotional distancing

Social Philosophy and Policy 36 (1):6-26 (2019)
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Abstract
:In this essay, I present an account of forgiveness as a process of emotional distancing. The central claim is that, understood in these terms, forgiveness does not require a change in judgment. Rationally forgiving someone, in other words, does not require that one judges the significance of the wrongdoing differently or that one comes to the conclusion that the attitudes behind it have changed in a favorable way. The model shows in what sense forgiving is inherently social, shows why we should be pluralists about it, and provides a basis for arguing against the existence of necessary conditions of forgiving.
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Archival date: 2019-01-17
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