Aliens in America: Conspiracy Cultures From Outerspace to Cyberspace / Edition 1

Aliens in America: Conspiracy Cultures From Outerspace to Cyberspace / Edition 1

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by Jodi Dean
     
 

ISBN-10: 0801484685

ISBN-13: 9780801484681

Pub. Date: 03/28/1998

Publisher: Cornell University Press

In a provocative analysis of public culture and popular concerns, Jodi Dean examines how serious UFO-logists and their pop-culture counterparts tap into fears, phobias, and conspiracy theories with a deep past and a vivid present in American society. Aliens, the author shows, provide cultural icons through which to access the new conditions of democratic politics at…  See more details below

Overview

In a provocative analysis of public culture and popular concerns, Jodi Dean examines how serious UFO-logists and their pop-culture counterparts tap into fears, phobias, and conspiracy theories with a deep past and a vivid present in American society. Aliens, the author shows, provide cultural icons through which to access the new conditions of democratic politics at the millennium. Because of the technological complexity of our age, political choices and decisions have become virtually meaningless, practically impossible. How do we judge what is real, believable, trustworthy, or authoritative? When the truth is out there, but we can trust no one, Dean argues, paranoia is indeed the most sensible response. Aliens have invaded the United States. No longer confined to science fiction and tabloids, aliens appear in the New York Times, Washington Post, and Wall Street Journal, at candy counters (in chocolate-covered flying saucers and Martian melon-flavored lollipops), and on Internet web sites. Aliens are at the center of a faculty battle at Harvard. They have been used to market AT&T cellular phones, Milky Way candy bars, Kodak film, Diet Coke, Stove-Top Stuffing, skateboard accessories, and abduction insurance. A Gallup poll reports that 27 percent of Americans believe space aliens have visited Earth. A Time/CNN poll finds 80 percent of its respondents believe the U.S. government is covering up knowledge of the existence of aliens. What does the widespread American belief in extraterrestrials say about the public sphere? How common are our assumptions about what is real? Is there any such thing as "common" sense? Aliens, the author shows, provide cultural icons through which to access the new conditions of democratic politics at the millennium. Because of the technological complexity of our age, political choices and decisions have become virtually meaningless, practically impossible. How do we judge what is real, believable, trustworthy, or authoritative? When the truth is out there, but we can trust no one, Dean argues, paranoia is indeed the most sensible response.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780801484681
Publisher:
Cornell University Press
Publication date:
03/28/1998
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments,xi
Introduction: Alien Politics,1
1 Fugitive Alien Truth,25
2 Space Programs,62
3 Virtually Credible,98
4 I Want to Believe,126
5 The Familiarity of Strangeness,153
Postscript: Commemorations, July 1997,182
Notes,199
Index,233

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1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Just because Ms Dean cannot 'choose among policies and verdicts, treatments and claims', she dismisses all attempts at reason and understanding. Having no concept of truth, in fact, in trendy postmodern style, dismissing its very possibility, she is left wallowing in the midst of the most ridiculous muddle of fraudulent, self-serving nonsensical claims about the reality of 'alien abduction'. Some writers and publishers, including Cornell University (!!)Press, to its shame, make money out of this tosh. Grow up - we are on our own there are no saviours, either from our human past or from some alien planet.