Scapegoating involves holding someone responsible for something that the person did not do. It allows anger and other negative emotions to be released. It can also be means of getting rid of a rival or to increase control.

In the Bible (Leviticus) all of the sins of the people were ritually transferred to a goat which was then driven away thereby removing sin from the community.


Features of scapegoating:

(1) Something unpleasant has happened.

(2) A person or group are blamed for the event (projection).

(3) The blame is unfair or unfounded.

(4) The person or group may face physical or psychological retribution from the community.


Negative features of scapegoating:

(1) The cause of the event usually remains unresolved and so could recur.

(2) The responsible person or parties are not held accountable.

(3) The scapegoat usually is usually made to suffer in some way as a result.

To read more or access our algorithms and calculators, please log in or register.