Chapter 3. Three Theories of the Moral Panic

  1. Erich Goode and
  2. Nachman Ben-Yehuda

Published Online: 11 NOV 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9781444307924.ch3

Moral Panics: The Social Construction of Deviance, Second Edition

Moral Panics: The Social Construction of Deviance, Second Edition

How to Cite

Goode, E. and Ben-Yehuda, N. (2009) Three Theories of the Moral Panic, in Moral Panics: The Social Construction of Deviance, Second Edition, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444307924.ch3

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 11 NOV 2009
  2. Published Print: 21 AUG 2009

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405189347

Online ISBN: 9781444307924

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Keywords:

  • moral panic - the three theories;
  • knowing the elite, interest groups and grassroots;
  • activist groups - nestling in middle levels of the pyramid;
  • classic orthodox Marxist approach - “elite-engineered” model;
  • interest-group theory - acting independently of elite in expressing their ideology;
  • grassroots model - panics originating among general public;
  • grassroots perspective toward moral panics and American public reaction toward nuclear power;
  • populism as a factor in moral panic eruption;
  • elite-engineered model - ruling elite causes, creates, engineers, and “orchestrates” moral panics;
  • interest-group model and cui bono? For whose benefit is it? Who profits?

Summary

This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Defining Our Terms

  • The Three Theories: An Introduction

  • The Grassroots Model

  • The Elite-Engineered Model

  • Interest-Group Theory

  • Conclusions

  • Summary