Get 20M+ Full-Text Papers For Less Than $1.50/day. Subscribe now for You or Your Team.

Learn More →

Missing the moral: Excited delirium as a negative case study of a moral panic

Missing the moral: Excited delirium as a negative case study of a moral panic This article examines Excited Delirium, a controversial medical explanation offered as an explanation for a variety of in-custody deaths. It appears to fit all essential criteria to incite a moral panic, featuring a powerful moral entrepreneur playing off of well-established fears of drugs use and psychosis, with a classic folk devil in the form of young men of color. Yet Excited Delirium has failed to provoke a widespread response, raising the question of how a phenomenon that meets all the classic criteria can fail to incite a moral panic. I argue this stems from the entrepreneurs involved failing to present themselves as sufficiently moral, their campaign to medicalize the phenomenon meeting an unreceptive medical field, and their broad conception of Excited Delirium too easily facilitating strong counter-narratives. This study uses Excited Delirium as a negative case to demonstrate several important factors to consider in the development of moral panics. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Punishment & Society: The International Journal of Penology SAGE

Missing the moral: Excited delirium as a negative case study of a moral panic

Loading next page...
 
/lp/sage/missing-the-moral-excited-delirium-as-a-negative-case-study-of-a-moral-5XQzytrOef

References (96)

Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
© The Author(s) 2016
ISSN
1462-4745
eISSN
1741-3095
DOI
10.1177/1462474516635885
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This article examines Excited Delirium, a controversial medical explanation offered as an explanation for a variety of in-custody deaths. It appears to fit all essential criteria to incite a moral panic, featuring a powerful moral entrepreneur playing off of well-established fears of drugs use and psychosis, with a classic folk devil in the form of young men of color. Yet Excited Delirium has failed to provoke a widespread response, raising the question of how a phenomenon that meets all the classic criteria can fail to incite a moral panic. I argue this stems from the entrepreneurs involved failing to present themselves as sufficiently moral, their campaign to medicalize the phenomenon meeting an unreceptive medical field, and their broad conception of Excited Delirium too easily facilitating strong counter-narratives. This study uses Excited Delirium as a negative case to demonstrate several important factors to consider in the development of moral panics.

Journal

Punishment & Society: The International Journal of PenologySAGE

Published: Apr 1, 2016

There are no references for this article.