"Welch’ eine arme Sau": Fremdverstehen, emotionsregulation und die kommunikative konstruktion interpersonaler vergebung

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Contrary to revenge and retaliation, forgiveness as a strategy of interpersonal conflict resolution has not yet become the subject of sociological inquiry. Based on a qualitative interview study, this contribution investigates the social dimensions of meaning and signification that are essential to the forgiving of non-justiciable wrongs in interpersonal social relationships. Our results show that victims’ reactions to perceived wrongs are characterized by ambivalent and at times contradictory behavioral expectations that produce significant emotional irritation. Looking at various courses of interaction that centrally involve the moral judgment of wrongdoings, we show that successful acts of forgiveness substantially depend on the interpersonal regulation and transformation of emotion. These emotions function as mutual frames of reference for the intersubjective understanding of wrongdoings and suggest that interpersonal forgiveness should be conceived of as a genuinely social interactive process rather than an individual propensity.
Translated title of the contribution"What a Poor Sod": Intersubjective Understanding, the Regulation of Emotion, and the Communicative Construction of Interpersonal Forgiveness
Original languageGerman
JournalZeitschrift für Soziologie
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)22–38
Number of pages17
Publication statusPublished - 01.02.2017
Externally publishedYes

    Research areas

  • Sociology - emotion regulation, forgiveness, sociology of Knowledge, Moral Judgement