Killing, viewed from a conflict resolution perspective: a ‘just punishment’ using the Shona people’s lenses

  • Obediah Dodo
  • Enock Chikohora
  • Alois Muzenje
  • Gloria Dodo
  • Mitchell Zihanzu


This article looked at how the Shona people have culturally used physical fighting and killing as an effective way of resolving conflicts in society. The study was guided by a concept that looks at ‘just punishment’ for offences and conflicts encountered. The study analysed archival material and literature on killings in Zimbabwe, identifying incidents that were deliberately meant to permanently end conflicts in society. Content analysis was employed to interpret data. The study established that while murder and elimination have never been justifiable at law as a resolution of conflicts, Shona societies have employed the approach since time immemorial. The same approach has been embraced in the contemporary justice system.

Journal Identifiers

print ISSN: 2346-7126