Graduated Reciprocation in Tension Reduction (GRIT)

Graduated reciprocation in tension reduction (GRIT) is a behavioral strategy designed to reduce hostilities among conflicting parties. It is a unilateral strategy under which the adopter initiates a system of conciliation and reciprocation and at the same time signals a willingness to cease the process if the other party attempts to exploit the goodwill. GRIT is applicable to both intergroup and intragroup conflict.

GRIT was proposed in 1959 by Charles Osgood in response to the escalation of the Cold War and the wave of strategic models being advocated, all of which took, in Osgood's view, untenable perspectives on U.S.–USSR relations. Military strategists advocated a preventive or preemptive first strike (“getting it all over with in an angry burst of hell-fire,” in Osgood's words). Pacifists argued for ...

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