Sort by: Author Title [ Type  (Desc)] Year
Filters: Keyword is scapegoating  [Clear All Filters]
McCarthy, J. (1995).  Dynamics of software development.
"Scapegoatism is a maladaptive, defensive reaction in which failure and other evils are magically warded off by finding someone to blame. The team will find a scapegoat instinctively as a way of preserving local functionality in spite of a deteriorating general situation." (p. 138)
Toseland, R. W., & Rivas R. F. (2005).  An introduction to group work practice.
"The scapegoat, for example, receives much negative attention and criticism from the group because the member is blamed for a host of defects and problems. According to Schulman (1999), members attack the portion of a scapegoat's behavior that they least like about themselves." (p. 235)
White, S. (2013).  An Introduction to the Psychodynamics of Workplace Bullying. 252. Abstract
"For a scapegoat to become a victim, the group dynamics have to change. There needs to be a trigger, for example, an increase in anxiety levels due to a takeover or a restructuring of the organisation. If group members become more concerned about self-survival than about the group, the dynamics fragment. With little, or no, support from colleagues, an already burdened scapegoat would be vulnerable to attacks by group members who cope by projecting their anxieties on to others."
Hersey, P., & Blanchard K. (1977).  Management of Organizational Behavior : Utilizing Human Resources.
"Often, however, people cannot attack the cause of their frustration directly, and they may look for a scapegoat as a target for their hostility. For example, a worker may fear his boss because the boss holds his fate in her hands. In this case, 'the resentful worker may pick a quarrel with his wife, kick the cat, beat his children, or, more constructively, work off his feelings by chopping wood, by cursing and swearing, or engaging in violent exercises or horseplay of an aggressive nature.'" (p. 18)
Stein, H. F. (2001).  Nothing personal, just business: a guided journey into organizational darkness.
"Organizational (cultural) scapegoating is one manifestation of embodiment and disembodiment, which are in turn about the languages and processes of inclusion, exclusion, and expulsion (De Vos 1980) and their projective/introjective equivalents." (p. 39)
Levinson, H. (1976).  Psychological Man.
"In displacement or substitution, we vent our feelings on a convenient but inappropriate target. This is the attack which follows projection. Scapegoating is just one variation of this mechanism. Managers frequently unload their disappointment in themselves onto their subordinates." (p. 36)
Dyckman, J. M., & Cutler J. A. (2003).  Scapegoats at Work: Taking the Bull's-eye Off Your Back. 212. Abstract
"There is almost always some truth to the accusations against a scapegoat, but many other sins are laid against their name that rightly belong elsewhere. Punishing or excluding the scapegoat serves to relieve the system of the need to examine the structural problems of the system and of all concerned to explore their own participation in the problem. The ability of scapegoating to provide simple apparent 'solutions' to complex problems is part of its power." (p. 11) "We know from our experience working with patients who come into our practices with job stress, depression, and anxiety that scapegoating is a common problem in the workplace. Most workers who suffer from it are isolated and blame themselves as their managers and coworkers have blamed them. Sometimes a vague sense that 'it is not fair' is their only clue that there may be larger forces at work, institutional forces, workplace culture forces that operate like a powerful undertow on a seemingly quiet beach." (p. 3)
Roberts, W. (2012).  Victory Secrets of Attila the Hun. 159. Abstract
"Beware of chieftains who either take or fail to give credit for their subordinates' accomplishments. Such chieftains are quick to find a scapegoat when they make even a minor mistake." (p. 29)
Wyatt, J., & Hare C. (1997).  Work Abuse: How to Recognize and Survive It.
"Scapegoating at work or anywhere else is the unconscious and irrational abuse of power against one person or a group of people, sometimes to the point of symbolic or even actual murder. Acute scapegoating is the cause of stress so severe as to disable an employee to the point of breakdown; the effects are far more detrimental than the ordinary fallout of ongoing or neglectful abuse due to needs not being met." (p. 68)
Hirschorn, L. (1990).  The Workplace Within: Psychodynamics of Organizational Life.
"Although people rely on social defenses to contain their anxiety and consequently scapegoat clients, customers, or co-workers, they also desire to restore their experience of psychological wholeness and repair the real or imagined psychological damage they have done in devaluing others. This desire for reparation helps to limit the level of social irrationality in any group setting and provides a strong basis for moments of group development." (p. 10)

See also: blame, organizational psychodynamics, stigma, abuse

Google ngram chart

Neighbor relation graph

SKOS Concept Scheme

SKOS concepts and relations

Concept Scheme: business culture/management vocabulary

URI: business culture/management vocabulary


  • Concept: scapegoating
    • preferred: scapegoating
    • definition: someone who is punished for the errors of others
    • related: blame
    • broader: organizational_psychodynamics
    • broader: stigma
    • broader: abuse
    • closeMatch:
    • keyword-227
    • linked content:
      • sense: scapegoat
      • sense: whipping boy
      • scapegoat
      • in scheme:
      • gloss: someone who is punished for the errors of others
      • hyponym of:
      • synset id: 110555311
  • W3C SKOS spec
    RDF source

    (C)2014 CC-BY-NC 3.0,