Most of the literature on collective victimhood has focused on its negative consequences for conflict resolution. Only recently has the understanding emerged that collective victimhood can also play a role in reconciliation. The present research aimed to test this recent insight in the context of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict. A sample of 200 Israeli Jews who participated in the 2015 Israeli–Palestinian Memorial Day ceremony organized by the Combatants for Peace organization completed online questionnaires. In line with our predictions, personal victimization (i.e., losing a significant other due to the conflict) and inclusive victim perceptions (i.e., perceptions of a “common victim identity,” namely, similarity between the ingroup’s and the outgroup’s suffering) predicted peace activism. However, perceptions of a common perpetrator identity failed to predict activism. These results were replicated in a sample of 106 Israeli Jews who participated in the 2016 ceremony. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.
- Combatant for Peace
- Palestinian–Israeli Bereaved Families for Peace
- collective victimhood
- common perpetrator identity
- inclusive victim consciousness
- peace activism
- the Israeli–Palestinian conflict