Does activating justice help or hurt in promoting forgiveness

J.C. Karremans, P.A.M. van Lange

    Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


    Do justice values promote or obstruct forgiveness? This question has received virtually no empirical attention, even though past theorizing suggest two different answers. The literature on forgiveness suggests that justice constitutes a barrier to forgiveness, suggesting that the activation of justice values should decrease the probability of forgiveness. Conversely, the literature on justice and human values indicates that justice and forgiveness are positively associated, suggesting that the activation of justice should enhance the probability of forgiveness. Consistent with the latter line of reasoning, three studies, using complementary priming methods, provide converging evidence for the prediction that the activation of justice promotes (rather than obstructs) forgiveness. Implications for extant theory regarding forgiveness and justice are discussed. © 2004 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)290-297
    Number of pages8
    JournalJournal of Experimental Social Psychology
    Publication statusPublished - 2005


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