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The Value of Respect: Theorising Cooperative and Conflictive Relationships
Keywords: respect, cooperation, conflict,
Abstract: There is a common assumption that the deeper and more frequently two parties cooperate, the higher the level of respect will be between them. This paper challenges this assumption, instead arguing that respect can be just as high or low in a relationship of cooperation as it can be in one of conflict. To illustrate this, I develop a framework that plots parties’ attitude of respect independently from their interactions. In doing so, I illustrate the framework’s applicability from interpersonal relationships to those between groups both within and between political communities. Within the framework I also examine the role of non-interaction, as a separate relationship between conflict and cooperation, for conflict resolution and as a form of sanction. Finally, I discuss how respect can be asymmetrical both in cooperative and conflictive relationships and the necessity to remain respectful regardless of whether this is reciprocated or not.