The witch-hunt metaphor (and accusations against residential care workers)

Beckett, Chris (2002) The witch-hunt metaphor (and accusations against residential care workers). British Journal of Social Work, 32 (5). pp. 621-628. ISSN 0045-3102

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This Critical Commentary examines the widespread use of the metaphor of the witchhunt in relation to child sexual abuse investigations when they are perceived as being unjustified. The use of this metaphor can be seen to be part of a backlash, part of a widespread desire to discredit the evidence that sexual abuse is widespread. However, it is argued here that the metaphor is actually quite apt in the case of the recent wave of convictions of residential care workers, where the methods used have been quite suspect—and genuinely reminiscent in some respects of those used in historic witch hunts. It is suggested that legitimate child protection will ultimately be the loser if this is not addressed.

Item Type: Article
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Social Work
UEA Research Groups: Faculty of Social Sciences > Research Centres > Centre for Research on Children and Families
Depositing User: Nicole Ranaweera
Date Deposited: 25 Nov 2010 12:42
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2023 11:58
DOI: 10.1093/bjsw/32.5.621

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