Susanne Boshammer teaches at the University of Osnabrück as a Professor of Practical Philosophy and works on questions of moral and political philosophy. As a speaker on ethical issues she is a contributor to the international philosophy festival “Phil.Cologne” and is a regular guest on “Philosophical Radio” on WDR5. She is particularly interested in discussing philosophical questions in a language that is generally comprehensible.
THE SECOND CHANCE WHY WE SHOULD FORGIVE (BUT NOT EVERYTHING)
A philosophy of forgiveness
The readiness to forgive enjoys a good reputation in all cultures. We admire those who forgive, as we all know how difficult it can be to overcome a grudge. Psychologists praise forgiveness as a remedy for psychological wounds, and religious people consider it an expression of charity. But is it always right to give others a second chance? Or should we be more careful about forgiveness? Do we sometimes even have a duty to stand firm, to protect ourselves, to ensure justice or to maintain our self-respect? And what if someone shows no remorse whatsoever and flouts their second chance?
In her vivid and stimulating book, philosophy professor Susanne Boshammer examines what it means to forgive someone and discusses the reasons for and against forgiveness. She makes it clear that forgiveness does not have to mean that everyone involved becomes friends again, and why forgiving does not mean that we forget what happened. She is also concerned with the role of asking for forgiveness in the process of forgiveness and what speaks in favour of forgiveness despite all legitimate concerns: forgiveness is a unique human capacity and a powerful expression of our very humanity.