With close attention to the spheres of sport and religion as important sites of moral currency, this book draws on media coverage of major cases of hypocrisy, attending to differing meanings and consequences of hypocrisy within the US, France and Iceland. Instances come from scandals within the established churches, as well as cases from the National Collegiate Athletic Association, the Tour de France, and the inquest into the Hillsborough Disaster in the UK. It considers the importance of the context within which moral conduct takes place and the relevance of this for the occurrence of hypocritical action, while exploring also the implications of advances in computer and information technology for controlling messages and monitoring deceit.
Identifying the negative effects of the detection of hypocrisy at individual and institutional levels, the author engages with the work of Goffman to argue for the importance of trust in institutions, underlining the necessity of minimizing and correcting hypocritical acts by which this is undermined. A detailed study of hypocrisy and the need for trust, this volume will appeal to scholars and students of sociology with interests in social and moral conduct, sport, religion, Goffman and the notion of social life as artifice.