A Critical Evaluation of the Factual Accuracy and Scholarly Foundations of The Witch-Hunt Narrative

  title={A Critical Evaluation of the Factual Accuracy and Scholarly Foundations of The Witch-Hunt Narrative},
  author={James M Wood and D. Nathan and Richard Beck and Keith N. Hampton},
  journal={Journal of Interpersonal Violence},
  pages={897 - 925}
We comment on The Witch-Hunt Narrative (TWHN) by Cheit. As its first hypothesis, TWHN argues that most of the famous ritual child abuse cases of the 1980s and 1990s were not really witch-hunts at all. In response, we criticize the TWHN definition of a witch-hunt as overly narrow and idiosyncratic. Based on the scholarly literature, we propose 10 criteria for identifying a witch-hunt. We rate four well-known ritual child abuse cases with these criteria and show they were classic witch-hunts. As… Expand
A Response to Articles and Commentaries on The Witch-Hunt Narrative
  • R. Cheit
  • Psychology, Medicine
  • Journal of interpersonal violence
  • 2017
This response corrects an error that was identified by one commenter and it responds to questions raised by another commenter about my analysis of the “Concerned Scientists” brief. Expand


The Witch-Hunt Narrative
  • Nancy Lamb
  • Psychology, Medicine
  • Journal of interpersonal violence
  • 2017
An exhaustive examination of original data from dozens of cases bearing the witch hunt label concludes there was no witch-hunt epidemic, finding substantial evidence of sexual abuse in nearly every case he reviewed, contradicting the assertions made about those cases by what he calls thewitch-hunt narrative. Expand
The Witch-Hunt Narrative
  • K. Faller
  • History, Medicine
  • Journal of interpersonal violence
  • 2017
Cheit deals in depth with three hotly contested day care center cases: the McMartin Pre-School case in Manhattan Beach, California, the Wee Care Day Nursery case in Maplewood, New Jersey, and the Country Walk Babysitting Service case in Dade County, Florida. Expand
Cautio Criminalis, or a Book on Witch Trials
In 1631, at the epicentre of the worst excesses of the European witch-hunts, Friedrich Spee, a Jesuit priest, published the "Cautio Criminalis", a book speaking out against the trials that wereExpand
Myths About the Country Walk Case
The first scholarly effort to assess the competing views of the Country Walk case is assessed, finding the reasons why these claims constitute myths and why those findings are significant in the larger debate on children as witnesses. Expand
The Day Care Ritual Abuse Moral Panic
In the United States during the early 1980s, hundreds of day care providers were accused of sexually abusing their young charges in satanic rituals that included blood drinking, cannibalism, andExpand
Suggestive interviewing in the McMartin Preschool and Kelly Michaels daycare abuse cases: A case study
In the 1980s and early 1990s the United States witnessed an outbreak of bizarre “daycare abuse” cases in which groups of young children levelled allegations of sexual and Satanic abuse against theirExpand
Avoiding Problems in Child Abuse Interviews and Investigations
In 1983 a mother suffering from serious mental illness alleged that Raymond Buckey, a teacher at the McMartin Preschool in Manhattan Beach, California, had molested her 2½-year-old son (Nathan &Expand
Satanic Panic: The Creation of a Contemporary Legend
"Sociologist Victor began his involvement with satanic-cult phenomena by investigating a local panic centered in southwestern New York state. After an introductory section, his book begins with aExpand
Ritualistic Child Abuse in a Neighborhood Setting
It is suggested that ritual abuse in neighborhood settings appears secretive, coercive, and complex. Expand
The Creation of Satanic Ritual Abuse
Fears about satanic ritual child abuse swept the nation in the 1980s and 1990s, but were probably largely unfounded. In this article, we explore sociocultural, individual, and therapy-related factorsExpand