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Saturday, 3 March 2018

The Internet and Conspiracy Theories

I have been reading James Shapiro's Contested Will, an examination of disputes about Shakespeare's authorship of his plays and poetry.  As well as suggesting that the original challenges arose within a particular cultural context where the "Higher Criticism" was calling both the Gospels and the authorship of Homer into doubt. 

More interesting to me was the penultimate section which suggested that the rise of the Internet had helped to revive the whole farrago as the Internet rewards sheer persistence and determination over truth telling. A similar cultural trend can be seen behind the revival of other conspiracy theories.

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