Reconciliation Sentiment, Forgiveness, and Mental Health Among Genocide Victims

  • Immaculée MukashemaEmail author
  • Aslı Bugay
  • Etienne Mullet
Part of the Cross-Cultural Advancements in Positive Psychology book series (CAPP, volume 13)


In this chapter, a set of studies conducted by the authors in post-genocide Rwanda and post-civil war Angola is reported. These studies (a) examine the conceptualizations people living in these countries have regarding reconciliation sentiment, (b) quantitatively assess the relationship between reconciliation sentiment and mental health in a group of victims and in a group of perpetrators of the genocide in Rwanda, and, (c) assess the link between forgivingness – the disposition to forgive on a daily basis – and the reconciliation process. They show that the people in Rwanda and Angola have articulated conceptualizations regarding the nature of reconciliation sentiment, and that these conceptualizations are consistent with the way victims personally experience reconciliation. Only one type of reconciliation sentiment, the one corresponding to a renewed capacity to live together, hear each other, work together, and to forge compromises on a daily basis, is associated with mental health. Unconditional forgivingness appears to be a strong promoter of this reconciliation sentiment.


Reconciliation sentiment Unconditional forgivingness Mental health Rwanda 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Immaculée Mukashema
    • 1
    Email author
  • Aslı Bugay
    • 2
  • Etienne Mullet
    • 3
  1. 1.University of RwandaButareRwanda
  2. 2.Middle East Technical UniversityNicosiaCyprus
  3. 3.Institute of Advanced Studies (EPHE)ParisFrance

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