Forget moral panics

Mark Horsley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the spirit of Jean Baudrillard’s Forget Foucault this article offers a step-by-step critique of the ‘moral panic’ concept. It begins with a short review of Cohen’s original thesis and its gradual evolution before addressing its remarkable popularity and ascent to the stature of a domain assumption. The rest of the article uses and extends the existing critique of moral panic theory before suggesting that the entire conceptual repertoire, rather than undergo another period of adaptation, should be ditched to make way for much-needed innovation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-98
JournalJournal of Theoretical and Philosophical Criminology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2017
Externally publishedYes


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