Added: September 5, 2015 – Last updated: March 4, 2017


Author: Jodi Death

Title: Bad Apples, Bad Barrel

Subtitle: Exploring Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse by Catholic Clergy in Australia

Journal: International Journal for Crime, Justice and Social Democracy

Volume: 4

Issue: 2

Year: 2015

Pages: 94-110

ISSN: 2202-7998 – Find a Library: WordCat | eISSN: 2202-8005 – Find a Library: Open Access Journal

Language: English

Keywords: Modern History: 20th Century, 21st Century | Oceanian History: Australian History | Types: Child Sexual Abuse, Clergy Sexual Abuse


Link: International Journal for Crime, Justice and Social Democracy (Free Access)


Author: Jodi Death, School of Justice, Queensland University of, ResearchGate

Abstract: »This paper considers constructions of institutional culture and power in the cover-up of child sexual abuse (CSA) by clergy in the Roman Catholic Church of Australia. The issue of cover-up has previously been considered in international inquiries as an institutional failing that has caused significant harm to victims of CSA by Catholic Clergy. Evidence given by select representatives of the Catholic Church in two government inquiries into institutional abuse carried out in Australia is considered here. This evidence suggests that, where cover-up has occurred, it has been reliant on the abuse of institutional power and resulted in direct emotional, psychological and spiritual harm to victims of abuse. Despite international recognition of cover-up as institutional abuse, evidence presented by Roman Catholic Representatives to the Victorian Inquiry denied there was an institutionalised cover-up. Responding to this evidence, this paper queries whether the primary foundation of cover-up conforms to the ‘bad apple theory’ in that it relates only to a few individuals, or the ‘bad barrel theory’ of institutional structure and culture.« (Source: International Journal for Crime, Justice and Social Democracy)


  Abstract (p. 94)
  Introduction (p. 94)
  Institutional abuse internationally (p. 95)
  State inquiries and child sexual abuse in Australia (p. 97)
  This study (p. 98)
  Structure and institutional abuse (p. 99)
  Cover-up and a culture of elitism? (p. 101)
  Cover-up and a culture of concern for reputation (p. 103)
  Concluding discussion (p. 104)
  References (p. 105)

Wikipedia: History of Oceania: History of Australia | Catholic Church sexual abuse cases: Catholic sexual abuse cases in Australia | Rape in Australia | Sex and the law: Child sexual abuse