Towards a Theory of Scapegoating, Catharsis and Narrative Closure

  • Christiana SpensEmail author


The idea of scapegoating as a social ritual is introduced here, discussing the work of Girard, Douglas, Cohen and other key theorists to develop a theory that emphasizes the role of mythology, catharsis and narrative closure in that mechanism, as well as the wider context of moral panic and ‘sublime’ disarray.


Scapegoating Ritual Catharsis Narrative closure Girard 


Book and Journal Article

  1. Girard, René, I See Satan Fall Like Lightening. Forward by Williams, James G., 1999; reprinted. New York, NY: Orbis Books, 2001.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of International RelationsUniversity of St AndrewsSt AndrewsUK

Personalised recommendations