This book argues that justice often governs apologies. Drawing on examples from literature, politics, and current events, Cohen presents a theory of apology as corrective offers.
Many leading accounts of apology say much about what apologies do and why they are important. They stop short of exploring whether and how justice governs apologies. Cohen argues that corrective justice may require apologies as offers of reparation. Individuals, corporations, and states may then have rights or duties regarding apology. Exercising rights to apology or fulfilling duties to provide them are ways of holding one another mutually accountable. By casting rights and duties of apology as justifiable to free and equal persons, the book advances conversations about how liberalism may respond to historic injustice.
Apologies and Moral Repair will be of interest to scholars and advanced students in ethics, political philosophy, and social philosophy.
Andrew I. Cohen is Associate Professor of Philosophy and Director of the Jean Beer Blumenfeld Center for Ethics at Georgia State University. He is author of Philosophy, Ethics, Public Policy (Routledge, 2015). He has also edited or coedited books on public policy and applied ethics.
1. Toward a Theory of Apology: Mapping Some Terrain of Corrective Justice
2. Some Incomplete Accounts of Apologies
3. Apology as Relationship Repair
4. Relationships and Mutually Justifiable Demands
5. Rights and Duties of Apology
6. Apologies, Corrective Justice, and Relationship Repair: Some Puzzles
7. Corporate Apologies
8. Political Apologies
9. Apologies for Historic Injustice
"Andrew I. Cohen has made a significant advance in our understanding of the nature of apologies. He demonstrates, more clearly than anyone before, that apologies are grounded in the demands of justice. As such, he shows that liberal theories of justice have the resources to help address issues of historic injustice." - Andrew Valls, Oregon State University, USA