This paper first argues that a conflict between groups can be lessened by the explicit affirmation by one group of the other group’s identity, including its past pain, defeats and collective losses, when appropriate. A model of group affirmation is then proposed, consisting of: Leadership, Recognition, Validation and the Transparency of Future Time. The groups involved can be ethnic or national in scope. This model is defined in terms of another possible ARIA model to be added to the one already proposed, though quite different in content, by Jay Rothman (1997). Limitations concerning the use of this model are discussed as well.

Author Bio(s)

Thomas E. Boudreau is author of Sheathing the Sword: The U.N. Secretary-General and the Prevention of International Conflict and Universitas: The Social Restructuring of American Undergraduate Education. He has taught as a visiting professor at Syracuse University and the University of Pennsylvnia. He is currently a visiting assistant professor at American University.


conflict transformation, identity affirmation, intergroup conflict reduction

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