witch hunt

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witch hunt

An attempt to blame and punish people who hold unpopular views and opinions, often under the guise of some other investigation. The ruling party's witch hunt against its detractors sparked a civil war.
See also: hunt, witch

witch hunt

a campaign directed against a person or group holding unorthodox or unpopular views.
The expression was inspired by the persecution in former times of people believed to be witches, often culminating in execution by burning.
See also: hunt, witch
References in periodicals archive ?
Actually, the Witch hunt in Salem Massachusetts was probably the largest Witch hunt in history," another said.
This is why neither ministers nor bureaucrats have been saved from this witch hunt.
As Roper shows, the late fifteenth century saw a remarkable efflorescence of images of witches, much of it in advance of the rise of serious witch hunts.
However, she said that through a loan program run by nongovernmental activists, women in such areas are issued a low-interest, collateral-free "microcredit" loan of about 750 rupees ($18) to start her own business such as basket weaving, tailoring or selling chicken eggs, which has been successful in encouraging people to look beyond the economic aspects and mobilize against domestic abuse, alcoholism and the practice of witch hunts.
Prospects and Pitfalls: Witchcraft studies, or, more specifically, the study of early-modern European witch hunts, may well turn out to be a tester of the possibilities and limits for historical inquiry and research.
The comparative study of Anabaptist persecution and witch persecution in a number of lands where Anabaptism flourished, such as in the Northern and Southern Netherlands, southern Germany, and the Tirol, adds weight to the Monter thesis that the last great outbreak of the witch hunt occurred in places where Anabaptism had disappeared and was conducted by some of the same authorities.
The use of this legalistic surrogate for what was clearly a gay witch hunt worked in the short run, but in time it became clear that, while most of those arrested probably were gay, the case for statutory rape was fabricated out of whole cloth.
ySTANBUL (CyHAN)- Politicians, members of the judiciary and journalists have spoken out against threatening remarks by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoy-an, who stated that the government will carry out a witch hunt against followers of a faith-based group.
The study of the Reformation witch hunts of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in Europe and North America is still a topic overlaid with emotion and colored by the beliefs of the student.
WITCHCRAZE (BBC2, 9pm) IF the witches of Earl's Park are driving you mad, why not tune in for this dramatised account of the Scottish witch hunts of 400 years ago.
cable network answers that observation tonight with ``One of the Hollywood Ten,'' which begins as a torpid retread of Joseph McCarthy's Communist witch hunts of the 1940s and '50s and then blossoms into an absorbing drama of passionate filmmakers bucking all odds to create art.
Willem de Blecourt calls for serious reconsideration of the argument, made by Barbara Ehrenreich, Deidre English and others, that female healers were the main victims of the witch hunts of early modern Europe.
Ohio) revises his 2001 study of European and North American witch hunts, Witch, Wicce, Mother Goose, to incorporate the great flood of literature on witches and demonology during the intervening years.
Such discharges were way up, the report said, and there was no accountability for senior military brass who employed a "wink and smile" attitude with regard to the witch hunts.
264] Males were often the victims in actual witch hunts with Lamer estimating that about 20 per cent of the suspects were male (1984, 87), but females bore the brunt of these calamities it is the female witch, her dangerous sexuality and her magical powers, that is so prominent in ancient poetry.