You are asked to analyze a conspiracy theory of your choice by using the various analytic tools outlined in Module 2 and applied throughout the course. The assignment is written as a mini-report, with sub-titles. At least 2-3 references.
Subject: Apocalypse theory and the ends of the world
Analysis of Conspiracy Theories
“There is one story and one story only
That will prove worth your telling,
Whether as learned bard or gifted child;
To it all lines or lesser guards belong
That startle with their shining
Such common stories as they stray into.”
– (Robert Graves, To Juan at the Winter Solstice” from Poems 1938-1945 )
“…telling the real conspiracy apart from the imaginary one–or, in the terminology used here, the conspiracy from the conspiracy theory–is a subjective process. Although some analysts think this differentiation is not crucial, truth or falsity do matter. One cannot treat Winston Churchill’s warnings of the Nazi conspiracy in the 1930s on a par with Hitler’s contemporaneous ravings about a Jewish conspiracy. Reader and author alike need markers to distinguish the solid ground of fact from the swamp of fantasy, for it is this insidiousness that permits conspiracism to spread from the extremes to the mainstream.” (Pipes, 1997, p. 38)
To perform thorough analyses on conspiracy theories, conspiracy theorists must gather expertise in a variety of analytic disciplines, from documentation, to Semiotics, to history, to Psychology, to media literacy, to popular culture.Any skilled student of conspiracy theories needs to be able to correlate many different kinds of data, from a variety of different fields. It is important also to become a skilled analyst of data, to be able to determine which data are credible and which data are not worthy of consideration.One of your tasks this semester is to write a 750 word (minimum) critical assignment analyzing and critiquing one very specific conspiracy theory (concerning an extraordinarily famous person, war, society, or event). For this assignment, you will be expected to incorporate the full palette of analytic tools discussed here in Week 2’s module.
Daniel Pipes’ analytic tools (we will apply these tools on all CTs, throughout the term)
Evidence (Pipes, 1997)“Distinctive features of its evidence include these…”
Note that Pipes is critical of the following ideas….
~~~~~~~~~~~How to use the ideas of Daniel Pipes
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