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The Temptations of Scapegoating
American Criminal Law Review  (IF3.455),  Pub Date : 2019-03-01, DOI:
Daniel B. Yeager

In this Article, I examine four types of scapegoating which I designate (1) frame-ups, (2) axe-grindings, (3) patsies, and (4) reckonings. Each type is distinct from the original Levitical sense of the term whereby Aaron, by placing his hands on the head of a live goat and confessing the sins of the people of Israel, transfers the guilt of the people to the goat, which he promptly banishes to the desert. That Levitical sense of the term still has point within the fields of race, family psychology, and mass sociology, where scapegoating is identified as a process of “exter-nalizing” social harms.