Democracy and Retribution: Transitional Justice and Regime Support in Postwar West Germany

  title={Democracy and Retribution: Transitional Justice and Regime Support in Postwar West Germany},
  author={Giovanni Capoccia and Grigore Pop-Eleches},
  journal={Comparative Political Studies},
  pages={399 - 433}
How harshly should perpetrators of past abuses be punished, to reinforce the legitimacy of a new democracy? Drawing on sociopsychological theories, we hypothesize that prodemocratic mass attitudes are favored by the perception that defendants in transitional justice trials have been punished in a way that is morally proportional to their offenses. This perception is shaped by the social categorization of defendants and the opinions about the certainty of their guilt that predominate in the mass… 

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