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Lecture 1

SOCA01H3 Lecture 1: Lecture 1

Course Code
Sheldon Ungar

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September 3rd 2015
Introduction to course Sociological Imagination
Moral Panic: Moral panic is the exaggerated threat to societal values. It had been attributed to
folk devils and is also based on claims making.
Folk Devils: Term introduced by Stanley Cohen in his study of moral panic in the 1960’s. He
suggests that society creates a gallery of social type to shows its members which roles should
be avoided and which should be emulated. Folk devils are the strangers or the outsiders of a
society, someone who is perceived to be dangerous to the society.
Invasion of Baby Snatchers
There was a threat about strangers being baby snatchers.
Older kids were runaways while only a few kids were actually kidnapped.
Exaggerated data on fear of crime
27% of the time it’s the mother, another 27% of the time it’s the father, however, there
is still a moral panic of kids being killed by strangers.
Examples of Moral Panics
Americans and Ebola
Second hand smoke
Trigger warnings: Trigger warnings are warnings placed on many media outlets that discuss
sensitive incidents and topics such as sexual assault and violence. Trigger warnings gives the
reader the opportunity to opt-out of reading/engaging in such topics which could lead to
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