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Title: Lost in translation : an analysis of Christian restorative justice advocacy in Britain
Author: Osakabe, Yutaka
ISNI:       0000 0004 7431 9970
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 2018
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The aim of restorative justice is generally to empower victims and help offenders be accountable for their wrongdoings. In order to achieve these objectives, some programmes of restorative justice facilitate meetings between victims and offenders to give a chance to the victim to participate in deciding how the one who has wronged them can make things right. Some Christians have been among the most active contributors and advocates of implementing restorative justice in the public sphere since its inception. This is because the theory underpinning the approach resonates with Christian concepts such as sin and repentance. By employing in-depth interview analysis as a main method, this thesis demonstrates that engaging in restorative justice is problematic for those Christian advocates who believe they have a monopoly on the inner truth of restorative justice. This is because they operate their mission in a contradictory fashion, whereby they believe that only Christian faith can hold the true ethos of restorative justice, but at the same time need to suspend such language to avoid isolating wider (non-Christian) communities. Expressing such a belief may jeopardise their relationships with non-Christian partners for the advancement of restorative justice, and suspending Christian language may disempower themselves from engaging in the programme. After identifying these risks, the thesis argues that a fundamental problem that advocates encounter is how to deal with non-Christians as the 'other'. I propose that a possible way for advocates to continue their mission is to adopt reflexivity as a socio-political position, which asks of them to reconsider their absolute belief in the Christian approach to restorative justice. They need to be open to recognise their own limitations and adapt the ways in which they are committed to their Christian traditions, not only point out the others' problems.
Supervisor: Brittain, Christopher Craig ; McKinnon, Andrew Sponsor: University of Aberdeen ; Tokyo Christian Institute
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Restorative justice ; Christianity and justice