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Roman Clemency versus Jewish(-Christian) Forgiveness: A Comparative Analysis
University College Stockholm, Department of Religious Studies and Theology.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4683-3302
University College Stockholm, Department of Religious Studies and Theology.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9117-4943
2023 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Interpersonal forgiveness and clemency do in some respects have very similar functions: By not retaliating or punishing a conflict is put to rest. However, the motivations behind the Jewish-Christian ideal of interpersonal forgiveness and the Roman ideal of clemency are quite different. Jesus Ben Sira, Jesus of Nazareth and others argue that only those who forgive will receive divine forgiveness. Seneca, on the other hand, argues for clemency as an expression of superior, even divine, power over others. The two motivations, in turn, reflect distinct social dynamics for the two forms of non-retaliatory behaviours. This paper discusses how the ethics of interpersonal forgiveness nurtures a culture of indirect reciprocity whereas the ethics of interpersonal clemency builds hierarchically organized cooperative networks.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2023.
Keywords [en]
Clemency, forgiveness, Seneca, Jesus, Ben Sira
National Category
Religious Studies
Research subject
Biblical Studies, New testament
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:ths:diva-2152OAI: oai:DiVA.org:ths-2152DiVA, id: diva2:1829384
Conference
Society of Biblical Literature Annual Meeting, San Antonio, Texas, 17-21 november 2023
Projects
Dynamics of moral repair in antiquity
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 2016-02319Available from: 2024-01-18 Created: 2024-01-18 Last updated: 2024-01-23Bibliographically approved

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Kazen, ThomasRoitto, Rikard

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Language
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