Should a nation apologise for the crimes of its past?

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


The big political question facing the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge when they paid a state visit to Canada recently was whether they would be called on to apologise to First Nations peoples for the ravages of colonialism that have left their communities at such a bitter disadvantage.

As it turned out, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of British Columbia Indian Chiefs declined to attend a reconciliation ceremony, saying:

Reconciliation has to be more than empty symbolic gestures … the chiefs-in-assembly just didn’t feel that it was appropriate to feed into that public illusion that everything is okay.
Original languageEnglish
Specialist publicationThe Conversation
PublisherThe Conversation UK
Publication statusPublished - 18 Oct 2016


  • Colonialism
  • National apology
  • Reparations
  • apologising


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