To understand what kind of collective healing practices might be most effective following mass atrocity, we need to comprehend better what counts as collective healing, and in what ways group healing processes differ from individual ones. We need clear and well-argued answers to these conceptual questions as a basis for deriving the criteria by which we might evaluate various practices in different contexts. Because means are valuable only in relation to ends, judging their effectiveness requires a definition of the ends in question and what is good about them. So, what counts as a good collective healing process? This conceptual paper proposes that the concept of healing requires that of being wounded, which in turn requires the idea that some agent performed dehumanizing actions. It identifies dehumanization as a serious form of harm, and characterizes the nature of healing processes based on this analysis. It then describes the group nature of mass atrocities. These four points enable us to separate different kinds of healing processes that are normally conflated and begin to provide a framework for evaluating diverse collective healing processes.
"Collective Healing: Towards a Conceptual Framework,"
Genocide Studies and Prevention: An International Journal:
Available at: https://digitalcommons.usf.edu/gsp/vol15/iss3/8
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