Justice, Satisfaction, and Restoration of Friendship
This chapter examines Aquinas's understanding of the way in which the aim of reconciliation affects the operation of corrective justice. It focuses on ‘satisfaction’, a term that Aquinas used to denote the sequence of acts and attitudes necessary for the offender to atone for his wrongs in the eyes of the victim. It is argued that friendship affects the currency of repayment (honour as opposed to tangible goods), the temporal scope of the offences that need to be amended (the past history of the friends as opposed to punctual offences), and the identity of the person who should enforce repayment (the offender as opposed to the judge). Friendship also determines the quantity of required satisfaction by making acceptable what satisfaction the friend is capable of, rather than demanding of him the full repayment of the debt. If, however, the friend has debased himself to such an extent that he cannot make any valuable satisfaction, then it is more advantageous for the ex-friend to be helped to repay the debt than merely to be released from payment.
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