Black Lives Matter

November 22, 2021, 11:00 am - 12:00 pm EST // 17:00 - 18:00 CET

Activism for Reconciliation in a Divided Country

Since the killing of George Floyd on May 25, 2020, America has experienced an explosion of activism and institutional work for justice, truth, and reconciliation. Who are the actors in that field? What motivates them? Is racial reconciliation conceived as an important and realistic goal? What are the roles of confessions of guilt, recognition of injustices, and forgiveness in racial reconciliation in the United States? The seminar presents the first results of transdisciplinary reconciliation studies research. The research is based on documents and expert interviews. It includes a comparison with reconciliation processes in Germany.

Join DAAD/AGI Research Fellow Martin Leiner as he presents a comparative study of the process of reconciliation.

Martin Leiner is Professor for Protestant Theology and Ethics at Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena. He has previously held positions at the University of Mainz and the University of Neuchâtel. Since 2008, he has focused on transdisciplinary research on reconciliation processes worldwide. This includes historical examples such as German-French reconciliation after World War II to current challenges such as reparations for human rights violations and injustices in former colonies, reconciliation and refugees, or reconciliation in conflicts about heritage. Reconciliation Studies are a new, creative academic field where definitions, research methods, and ground-breaking theories still are very much in the making. After a series of summer schools, Dr. Leiner won a Deutsch Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) grant for the research on “Encountering the suffering of the other” in Israeli and Palestinian contexts. This grant also established the Jena Center for Reconciliation Studies (JCRS) with two PhD programs and twenty PhD students. Dr. Leiner is the founding president of the International Association for Reconciliation Studies (IARS), which was established in 2020. Dr. Leiner has published on reconciliation theory and on practical experiences in countries such as Colombia, Congo, East Asia, Germany, Israel/Palestinian Territories, Rwanda, and South Africa. He is the editor of the series Research in Peace and Reconciliation (RIPAR) and published books and articles in various fields of theology.

This event will convene via Zoom. Contact Ms. Elizabeth Hotary at with any questions.

This event is supported by the DAAD with funds from the Federal Foreign Office.