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Revenge as a Form of Ensuring Justice


In general, revenge is an action that involves harming someone in return for being harmed by them. Usually, all people can feel this urge to punish somebody for the actions they did. Psychologists consider that revenge is a form of providing justice. The threat of revenge can keep people protected from those who are willing to harm (Chester and DeWall 414). In this respect, revenge can assure people that those who inflicted moral or physical damage on them will not do that again in the future. However, sometimes, revenge can have unpleasant consequences. For example, when a loving couple breaks each other’s things when they quarrel; when businesspeople destroy their careers trying to avenge those who rejected them; when students start a fire in a school building, and so on (Hall). Thus, revenge is considered one of the deepest human instincts; therefore, it is impossible to get rid of it, but it is possible to control it.

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The Concept of Revenge

The concept of revenge was first described a very long time ago. Bible, for example, justifies revenge claiming that an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth is acceptable. However, nowadays, there is an enormous number of books and movies that depict stories about revenge. Almost all of them have one common opinion regarding revenge. They demonstrate that it is bad and emphasize that it always has pernicious consequences (Grobbink et al. 897). The characters in these stories always suffer, as at first, when they want to avenge somebody or something, they usually feel pain and anger, but when their revenge is over, the feelings do not change.

Thus, in modern society, using different forms of art, people try to show that revenge is mostly bad. They also show that it is imperative to try avoiding it and learn to forgive their offenders. However, according to the statistics, this does not bring any positive results. The main reason for this is certainly that this urge for revenge is one of the human instincts, which is difficult to control. Another crucial reason is that as long as there are offenders, the feeling of injustice will always prevail in people’s minds, and they will succumb to revenge.

Certainly, it seems logical that if one person did something bad to another person, he or she will feel injustice and try to establish it using revenge. On the other hand, violence begets violence, and the offender can also avenge somebody in return, and so on (Bone and Raihani 325). Therefore, to stop this process, people try to convince those who want revenge not to initiate this process at all.


Thus, it is impossible to get rid of revenge, as, according to various studies, even animals are inclined to this feeling. The reason for this is probably because the concept of revenge is closely connected to the concept of justice, which is responsible for the feeling of what is right and what is wrong. Therefore, since the feeling of revenge is inevitable, it is necessary to manage it. Indeed, the key to solving the problem of revenge is not to try to eliminate it but to control it. Revenge is not always negative and, in certain cases, it can bring positive results (Hall). It can occur only in those cases when revenge is used as a punishment that shows people that they did wrong and must not repeat that.

Works Cited

Bone, Jonathan E., and Nichola J. Raihani. “Human Punishment is Motivated by Both a Desire for Revenge and a Desire for Equality.” Evolution and Human Behavior, vol. 36, no. 4, 2015, pp. 323-330.

Chester, David S., and C. Nathan DeWall. “Combating the Sting of Rejection with the Pleasure of Revenge: A New Look at How Emotion Shapes Aggression.” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, vol. 112, no. 3, 2017, pp. 413-426.

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Grobbink, Leonie H., et al. “Revenge: An analysis of its psychological underpinnings.” International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology, vol. 59, no. 8, 2015, pp. 892-907.

Hall, Karyn. “Revenge: Will You Feel Better?” Psychology Today. 2013, Web.

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