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November 14, 2021

The ugly psychology behind scapegoating, with Luke Burgis
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Did you know that the desires are not entirely the own? Desires are imitated from the first moment we are born. The desires form from what the parents, friends, and significant others want in life. Now placed in a group, large or small, these imitative desires are even more powerful. These transferred desires within a group do create cohesion, but they're also the heart of where scapegoats are born.

A scapegoat is someone outside of your group who also stands out from the social norm. The group then uses these scapegoats to transfer blame and negative emotions because they do not share the desires of the group. This blame, negative emotion, or fundamental truth is something the group does not want to acknowledge internally, so the blame is transferred to the scapegoat.

In an instant, the problems of the group are gone because of the transfer of blame onto the scapegoat. Since scapegoats are identified as the root cause of the problem, they create a sense of relief, healing, and even protection for the group.

Read the video transcript: bigthink.com/videos/scapegoat

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About Luke Burgis:
Luke Burgis has co-created and led four companies in wellness, consumer products, and technology. He’s currently Entrepreneur-in-Residence and Director of Programs at the Ciocca Center for Principled Entrepreneurship where he also teaches business at The Catholic University of America. Luke has helped form and serves on the board of several new K-12 education initiatives and writes and speaks regularly about the education of desire. He studied business at NYU Stern and philosophy and theology at a pontifical university in Rome. He’s Managing Partner of Fourth Wall Ventures, an incubator that he started to build, train, and invest in people and companies that contribute to a healthy human ecology. He lives in Washington, DC with his wife, Claire, and her crazy New Orleans cat Clotille.

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