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Friendship and Moral Formation: Implications for Restorative Justice

Published in Augustine and Social Justice. Lanham: Lexington Books. 2015, p. 251-275
Abstract In his role as bishop, Augustine regularly intercedes on behalf of criminals or wrong-doers in matters related to actions committed against or within the Christian church. These intercessions are issued against the backdrop of his reflections on the nature of discipline – its aims, its purposes, its execution. For Augustine, discipline is fundamentally concerned with the health and reform of the wrong-doer. Augustine emphasizes the importance for justice of considering how a wrong-doer might best be afforded the opportunity to reform and how such reform might be encouraged and conducted should they wish. His emphasis on restoring the wrong-doer to health (salutem) and to relationship in a community resonates with the aims of restorative justice. Central to his understanding of how such restoration is possible is the moral formation that happens through friendship. This paper explores the resources and implications of Augustine’s thought on discipline and reform for restorative justice, particularly in light of the practice of solitary confinement in the American criminal justice system and the Circles of Support and Accountability program that assists sex offenders in re-integrating into society after their prison terms. The argument presents Augustine’s emphasis on the restoration of the wrong-doer through morally formative friendship as a model for addressing the relationship between the wrong-doer and a society often fearful of them.
Keywords AugustineSocial justiceRestorative justiceFriendshipMoral formation
ISBN: 978-1-4985-0917-6
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STEWART-KROEKER, Sarah. Friendship and Moral Formation: Implications for Restorative Justice. In: Augustine and Social Justice. Lanham : Lexington Books, 2015. p. 251-275. https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:100796

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Deposited on : 2017-12-22

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