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Clare Birchall: Conspiracy Theory, Secrecy, Transparency

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Conspiracy theories have perhaps always been an irritation to those in power, but two recent transatlantic policy interventions suggest both the explicit ways in which conspiracy theories constitute a destabilising threat and some strategies for tackling them in a post 9/11, post 7/7 era. In this paper, Birchall argues that this recent manifestation of political anxiety draws on a long-standing cultural anxiety concerning the politics of knowledge. She will also consider one of the suggested strategies – increased transparency – not in order to assess its ability to curb conspiracy theories, but in order to examine what kind of alternative to conspiracy theory transparency offers.

Dr Clare Birchall Senior Lecturer in the Institute for North American Studies, King’s College, London

This talk is part of the CRASSH series.

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