This module explores the nature of revenge and its part in igniting and fuelling the conflict.

The DVD resource material in this module divides perspectives on the issue into three strands:
Revenge Is Not Justice: Perspectives that see revenge as a base instinct to be resisted
Revenge As A Form of Justice: Perspectives that saw revenge as part of the motivation to establish a just state, as well as perspectives that saw revenge attacks as part of a strategy to defend their just state.
Revenge As A Cycle: Perspectives that illustrate the intensely personal nature of revenge.

The strands ground the exploration in the relationship between justice and revenge and thus the significance of whether or not individuals had faith in the state’s ability to deliver justice. The piece of film introducing Strand 1 dramatises support for revenge attacks after a violent incident. The strand continues with perspectives which regard revenge as an impulse outside the law to be resisted in the cause of justice. Strand 2 counters this view with perspectives that saw revenge as an impulse it was legitimate to exploit for ‘justice’. Finally Strand 3 explores the intensely personal nature of revenge and the tendency of its dynamic to spiral away from any strategic considerations into the most abject violence.