Beyond retribution, restoration and procedural justice: the Big Two of communion and agency in victims’ perspectives on justice

Victims’ perspectives on justice in the aftermath of crime are a key victimological topic. The main justice concepts that have received scholarly victimological attention are retributive justice, value restoration and procedural justice. In this paper, we argue that the so-called Big Two framework -...

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Bibliographic Details
Published in:Psychology, crime & law
Main Author: Pemberton, A. (Author)
Other Authors: Aarten, P. G. M. (Author); Mulder, E.
Format: Electronic Article
Language:English
Published: 2017
In:Psychology, crime & law
Year: 2017, Volume: 23, Issue: 7, Pages: 682-698
Online Access: Volltext (Resolving-System)
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Summary:Victims’ perspectives on justice in the aftermath of crime are a key victimological topic. The main justice concepts that have received scholarly victimological attention are retributive justice, value restoration and procedural justice. In this paper, we argue that the so-called Big Two framework - agency and communion - can further help us understand victims’ experiences with justice. Agency refers to a person striving for individuality, while communion refers to the participation of the individual in and connection with a group. According to the framework outlined in this paper, we argue that victimization by crime involves an impaired sense of agency and communion, and justice can be viewed as an attempt to repair both these dimensions. Retributive justice is a prominent means to repair agency, but other options to do so are also open to the victim. A similar observation can be made about value restoration with respect to communion. Acknowledging this can be of particular importance in cases where no offender is apprehended. As to procedural justice, the framework emphasizes the need to distinguish process participation as a means to re-establish agency from participation to re-establish communion with representatives of society.
ISSN:1477-2744
DOI:10.1080/1068316X.2017.1298760