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Sorry States: Apologies in International Politics Hardcover – Jul 31 2008

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 242 pages
  • Publisher: Cornell Univ Pr (July 31 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801446252
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801446252
  • Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 0.5 x 23.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 499 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,535,580 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From the Back Cover

"Sorry States is an extremely timely book, covering an issue of great importance for the international relations of East Asia (and beyond). Jennifer Lind has compiled all of the important statements on war responsibility and related issues by Japanese and German politicians and other elites, including not just the official statements and acts but also the backlash statements that have received media attention."—Leonard J. Schoppa, University of Virginia, author of Race for the Exits

"Is remorse the condition of reconciliation? With this original piece of scholarship, Jennifer Lind presents a more subtle argument. Yes, West Germany apologized profusely for Nazi atrocities, while Japan could never quite go beyond 'those unfortunate incidents.' As a result, Germany enjoys excellent relations with its neighbors, and Japan does not. Austria and Italy—Axis partners both—largely dodged their wartime responsibilities and still became respected members of the Western community. Neither have the United States and Britain apologized for Dresden, and yet they went on to enjoy warm relations with their wartime foes. Similarly, the Germans have not apologized to the French, their best friends in Europe. As it dissects these paradoxical outcomes, Sorry States makes a critical contribution to our understanding of comparative foreign policy and the politics of remembrance and reconciliation. It is a fine blend of good history and good political science."—Josef Joffe, Publisher-Editor, Die Zeit, Germany, and Senior Fellow, Institute for International Studies, Stanford University --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Jennifer Lind is Assistant Professor of Government at Dartmouth College. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 2 reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Timely, original, and clear Oct. 27 2008
By Ryan Karr - Published on
Format: Hardcover
As the international spotlight moves east towards Asia, Jennifer Lind provides an insightful look at how historical remembrance of war crimes plays a key role in East Asia and other regions. By contrasting the German-France post-WWII experience with that of Japan-Korea, the author points out a puzzle that goes against conventional wisdom: apologizing for war crimes won't necessarily improve relations with the victim nation, and it may be counter-productive. Meanwhile, states that are not contrite will most likely be viewed as threatening by its previous victims, as demonstrated by Lind in her analysis of the Japan-Korea case study. Thus, states that have committed war crimes in the past are faced with a conundrum: act contrite, and risk a counter-productive domestic backlash, or deny previous crimes and risk a foreign backlash.

This book is a great read for anyone interested in international relations, East Asia, or European reconciliation. Lind attacks the conventional wisdom and clearly shows how reconciliation is a tricky game to play. "Sorry States" is sure to satisfy not only respected IR scholars with well-organized, detailed analyses and theory testing, but also students of IR (like me) with clear and engaging discussion of one of the most important issues facing Asia today.
0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
About what promotes international reconciliation Sept. 30 2009
By ROROTOKO - Published on
Format: Hardcover
"Sorry States" is on the ROROTOKO list of cutting-edge intellectual nonfiction. Professor Lind's book interview ran here as cover feature on September 21, 2009.