Itamar Shapira, former soldier in the Israeli army, refusenik and now member of the organization Combatants for Peace, looks uneasy from the moment I greet him. I have been to Tulkarm in the West Bank to talk with former Palestinian militants, and to Tel Aviv to meet former Israeli soldiers but today Itamar can’t face telling… more
When Pat Magee walks into the House of Commons in London this week, some Members of Parliament will no doubt condemn the very notion of bringing the man who planned and planted the Brighton bomb into the heart of an institution he once tried to destroy. The event, organized jointly by The Forgiveness Project and the All-Party Parliamentary… more
From the mass murderers of Auschwitz, to the Islamic extremists who flew their planes into the World Trade Center, the widespread belief is that those who do grave harm to others to fulfill their ideological purpose are fundamentally different from us. We use a special vocabulary for them: “beasts”, “monsters”, “evil.” Yet the hypothesis which… more
Those who hurt others have long been categorized into three distinct types — the sad, the mad and the outright bad. Where would Phillip Garrido — rapist, abductor, pedophile and possible murderer — fit into this rogues gallery of perpetrators? His father’s verdict that a motorbike accident and heavy LSD use turned him ‘crazy’ seems to excuse,… more
TFP’s Director, Marina Cantacuzino, now has a column in the Huffington Post. Follow this link to take you to the first installment, “Beyond Good and Evil.”
It is almost certainly true to say that without Anita Roddick The Forgiveness Project would not exist. In 2003, I began collecting stories of forgiveness as a personal response to the growing thirst for revenge in the build up to the invasion of Iraq.
On 12th May 2010 more than 800 people piled into St John’s Smith Square, London, to hear Archbishop Desmond Tutu, founding patron of The Forgiveness Project, deliver our inaugural annual lecture – ‘Is Violence Ever Justified?’ Touching briefly on the Church’s view of a just war and challenging the audience to consider ‘what would you do… more
In October 2009, on the 25th anniversary of the Brighton Bomb, we collaborated with the All Party Parliamentary Group on Conflict Issues (http://www.conflictissues.org.uk/) and invited Pat Magee (the former IRA activist responsible for planting the bomb) to speak alongside Jo Berry, the daughter of Sir Anthony Berry who was killed in the attack. The event… more
In 2005 The Forgiveness Project undertook a period of research in HMPs Brixton and Holloway in partnership with Synergy Theatre Project (http://www.synergytheatreproject.co.uk/) and Olivier Award-winning playwright Shelagh Stephenson. This collaboration was successfully brought to fruition through a theatre production of the resulting commissioned play, The Long Road which opened at London’s Soho Theatre in May… more
Through the digital media accredited course we ran at High Down prison in Surrey during 2008-9 we made several short films devised and created by prisoners chronicling their life stories and ideas around forgiveness. Committing stories to film is a powerful way to strengthen victim empathy and convey remorse.