Positive Peace Through Personal Friendship: Franco-German Reconciliation (1974–1995)

Yuri van Hoef*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter/Conference proceedingChapterAcademic


This chapter introduces an approach to study political friendship as a factor that can contribute to positive peace. This is done by drawing upon the works of Johan Galtung and Andrea Oelsner, through which friendship is established as an aspect of positive peace. Thereby, this chapter contributes to addressing current lacunae in positive peace research. Political friendship is conceptualized through five key elements; affect, grand projects, altruistic reciprocity, moral obligations, and equality, which are examined in the friendships of Helmut Schmidt and Valéry Giscard d’Estaing (1974–1982), and Helmut Kohl and François Mitterrand (1982–1995). Both the commonalities and differences discovered shed a revealing light on the role of friendship in politics and international relations, and help us to understand the crucial role close personal relations played in the European project, establishing a degree of positive peace through personal friendship.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Palgrave Handbook of Positive Peace
Subtitle of host publicationVolumes 1-2
EditorsKaterina Standish, Heather Devere, Adan Suazo, Rachel Rafferty
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9789811609695
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2021

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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2022. All rights are reserved.

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