Conspiracy theories are built from the foundations of rumors. They are sometimes called “quasi-theories” (Ch.3, pg. 53). The purpose of conspiracy theories is to help people bring order to a chaotic event. To do so, conspiracy theories also use accepted societal beliefs to lay the blame upon a given party and divide the participants. Commonly, conspiracy theories are used to separate people into an ‘us’ and ‘them’ category. This separation is used to help the believer direct their emotions to the appropriate party, usually anger towards the ‘them’ party and sympathy towards the ‘us’ group. This creates a sense of unity within the ‘us’ party, it also allows for a person to reside in a sense of community. Since many conspiracy theories are not the published truth, believers can take a sense of comfort from this community. Conspiracy theories is the ending product after rumors go through three stages of evolution. …show more content…
The example used through the chapter of September 11th and its aftermath is a good example to show the progress of rumor to conspiracy theory. After the towers fell and the days following, numerous rumors spread about more terrorists’ attempts and plans. These attacks caused great confusion, this level not seen since Pearl Harbor. The rumors that were spread were meant to keep people away from potential sites of terrorist attacks. Feat was rampant after the attacks and people relied more on rumors and stories to guide their lives following the attacks. People wanted to know how to cope with the new sense of insecurity and fear. After the fear has waned, rumors developed into the people seeking to know that justice was met
He challenged this assumption by arguing that historians and South Carolina officials had written the result of the Stono Rebellion in reverse. Many of the historians and officials had assumed that there was a competent conspiracy theory to rebel before the violence even erupted. Hoffer again disagreed with this assumption. After analyzing the many causes that could’ve started the rebellion, the author came across many shortcomings and deficiencies of the traditional conspiracy theories that many individuals believe caused the rebellion.
The strength of the evidence throughout the film decreases, which is proven through the fact that many citizens stop believing the news reports the government is putting out. The evidence put forth by the government through the news station applies to everyone in the country watching the show. Huge pieces of evidences are ignored by the government. Larkhill is completely erased as well as the “terrorist” attacks on the people
The author argues that the Tea Party movement flocks towards conspiracy theories, as a way to hide structural inequalities which help the rich to maintain their wealth. However, in the chapter “Spinning Paranoia” in the book Conspiracy Nation by Skip Willman, the authors argue that conspiracy theorist and their opponents, who claim to be defending common sense, tend to have a lot more in common than is realized. He further states that contingency theory, which attempts to contain conspiracy theory is a sort of conspiracy theory in its own right, in that they both work to support for the symbolic order. Demonstrating that Berlet is not aware of the fact that his arguments about the Tea Party also back hierarchical power structures. For example,
There is a similarity between the play of Twelve Angry Men by Reginald Rose and Trifles regarding the idea of investigating the evidences. Eleven men who are sure the murder is guilty have made up their minds before they have even considered that the killer might be innocent. But, Juror eight gets them to review the evidence more carefully. As a group, the judges developed visions that even most jurors changed their views when the validity of the evidence was shown to be a questionable. There is a similarity between the play of Twelve Angry Men by Reginald Rose and Trifles regarding the idea of investigating the evidences.
Conspiracy and unlawful imprisonment, both are elements that can be linked together as coexisting events that have occurred throughout history. The idea of the manifestation of a conspiracy is enough to cause mass hysteria, causing any resident within a state, to cower and prosecute any human being that is deemed untrustworthy. In the year 1741, rumors of a slave conspiracy stated to circulate the town of New York, leading the residents to coward in fear, yet whether or not these conspiracies were true remains a mystery. As a result the New York Conspiracy trials of 1741, have been considered controversial, in regards to the whether or not a conspiracy transpired. This is primarily due to the fact that the only documented evidence that modern
Compared to the Birds Aren’t Real theory, it is not as extreme but it still has similarities when it comes to persuading the audience, especially through paranoia. The conventions of conspiracy theories as a genre are evident in the language and stylistic choices made by QAnon. For example, the movement employs coded language and cryptic messages, such as references to “Q”, to create a sense of insider knowledge among its followers. (QAnon Message Board)
Moon Landing Conspiracy Theory “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind,” (Neil Armstrong, 1969). At first glance, it may seem like we actually sent people to the moon and they returned safely. People have failed to notice, however, that NASA didn’t cover up everything completely when faking the first moon landing. If people continue to believe that America sent people on the moon and that they returned unharmed, they will never understand the larger question of exactly how they did it. That is, if they actually did.
Legends cover a broad spectrum of subjects and are used to help people understand various events. Starting with the supernatural legends that have been around for thousands of years to the conspiracy theories that seem to be born every day, legends are constantly growing and changing. A legend about the supernatural, for example, gives comfort to a person because it explains an unexplainable occurrence. While race and gender legends often serve as a warning to a particular group to cease how they have been acting and revert to the way it was. These legends are often used to scare people into acting a certain way, such as the “Hook” legend was used to stop teenagers from having sex by scaring them with a murderer lurking outside of the car
Does the secret society of the past still exist? Many seem to believe the Illuminati is still around to this day. The big question is, who is the Illuminati and where did they emerged from? Many conspirators say the Freemasons have a lot influence on them and their actions. Although it is still considered a conspiracy, the Illuminati, one of the most secretive societies do in fact exist.
This philosophy states “Entities should not be multiplied unnecessarily”, that if there are two explanations for an occurrence, the simpler one is the better one (Thornburn). The more assumptions that you must make, the less likely the explanation is. When you need to add something to fulfill its function of the narrative, you just added the chance to weaken the theory. Kurt Eichenwald’s, The Plot to Destroy America, explains conspiracies and people’s dependence on believing in them. “If people try to correct a false belief, they can simply entrench the belief.”
From this little lie at the time, it caused a massive fear and hysteria throughout the town. Further in the story we find there are hidden hatred, jealousy, and lust between the people
In the article “A Psychology of Rumor” by Robert H. Knapp he defines rumor as a belief of informal social communication including myths, legend, and humor. Robert H Knapp states that rumors have three basic characteristic modes of transmission mostly by word of mouth, informative, and the ones that express emotional need. The characteristic of rumor all play a different role in society. Such as wish rumors, bogie rumors, and the wedge driving aggression rumors. Robert H. Knapp explored into details about the characteristic of a successful rumor, and an unsuccessful rumor.
Both Olmsted and Coale use Hofstadter’s theory of paranoia in a way that is beneficial to extend and create a foundation for their own academic writing about conspiracy theory. However Fenster’s argument is effective as, by rejecting the dominant framework, he provides a contemporary way of thinking about the popular cultural discourse that focuses on conspiracy thinking and opens up what could be a more productive way to discuss, rather than disregard, conspiracy theory.