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Scapegoat Theory definition | Psychology Glossary |

Scapegoat Theory

Scapegoat theory is a social psychological term that relates to prejudice. According to this theory, people may be prejudice toward a group in order to vent their anger. In essence, they use the group they dislike as their target for all of their anger…as a vent. One example that has been suggested is the holocaust. According to scapegoat theory, the Germans used the Jews as scapegoats for all of their countries problems (which included economic problems across the country), focused all of their anger on the Jews, allowed their anger and hatred to build, and focused all of their anger, frustration, and problems on the Jews. (This is not "the" explanation for the holocaust, but one component of it.)

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