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Fatal FictionsCrime and Investigation in Law and Literature$
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Alison L. LaCroix, Richard H. McAdams, and Martha C. Nussbaum

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190610784

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190610784.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 07 December 2019

Reconciliation without Anger

Reconciliation without Anger

Paton’s Cry, the Beloved Country

Chapter:
(p.177) 9 Reconciliation without Anger
Source:
Fatal Fictions
Author(s):

Martha C. Nussbaum

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190610784.003.0009

Chapter 9 investigates the connections between anger, injustice, and political change in Alan Paton’s Cry, the Beloved Country. Nussbaum argues against the common view that anger is a necessary motivation to political mobilization or a necessary creative force for change. The common view includes the idea that political reconciliation requires public atonement by the unjust and public forgiveness by their victims. Nussbaum describes the novel as showing a personal analogue of the public alternative by which a nation riven by injustice might change. The protagonists are two fathers: a black man whose son has murdered a white man, and a white man whose son is the murder victim. The scenario is a natural one for the classic drama of contrition, apology, and forgiveness, but instead the two fathers turn aside from anger to imagine, with generosity, a future of interracial cooperation and constructive work.

Keywords:   Alan Paton, reconciliation, anger, apartheid, South Africa, Nelson Mandela

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