Among the Truthers: A Journey through America's Growing Conspiracist Underground

Among the Truthers: A Journey through America's Growing Conspiracist Underground

3.7 8
by Jonathan Kay
     
 

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From 9/11 conspiracy theorists and UFO obsessives tothe cult of Ayn Rand and Birthercrusaders, America is suffering from an explosion in post-rationalistideological movements. In Among the Truthers,journalist Jonathan Kay offers a thoughtful and sobering look at how socialnetworking and Web-based video sharing have engendered a flourishing of new

Overview

From 9/11 conspiracy theorists and UFO obsessives tothe cult of Ayn Rand and Birthercrusaders, America is suffering from an explosion in post-rationalistideological movements. In Among the Truthers,journalist Jonathan Kay offers a thoughtful and sobering look at how socialnetworking and Web-based video sharing have engendered a flourishing of new conspiracism. Kay details the sociological profiles of tenbrands of modern conspiracists—the Failed Historian,the Mid-Life Crack-Up, the Damaged Survivor, the Campus Revolutionary, theStoner, the Clinical Case, the Puzzle Solver, the Christian Doomsayer, the CosmicVoyager, and the Egomaniac—in a compelling exploration of America’s departurefrom reason and what it means for the very future of rational discourse as thenation steps further into the 21st century.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Kay, the managing editor and columnist at Canada's National Post newspaper, delivers an insightful (and slightly scary) exploration of America's conspiracy movements. Focusing primarily on the Truthers (who believe the U.S. government engineered the September 11 attacks)—and to a lesser extent, the Birthers (those who claim President Obama is a foreign-born Muslim), Holocaust deniers, and JKF assassination theorists—he argues that we must take these movements seriously, however outré they may seem, for the disturbing anti- intellectual trend they epitomize: a "nihilistic distrust of government" and a "rejection of logic and rational discourse." Kay, who spent three years immersing himself in conspiracy culture, traces America's flourishing conspiracism back to Greco-Roman times and explores the technological developments that allow conspiracy theories to flourish: Web sites and message boards where Truthers and Birthers can get news "tailored to their pre-existing obsessions." Kay, although generally a fair-minded conservative, reveals that he isn't immune to conspiracy theories himself: he excoriates the rise of multiculturalism and feminism in the academy for prompting a "reconstruction (and in some cases wholesale invention) of history according to the viewpoint of women, blacks, gays... a project that replaced the historian's once unquestioned goal of objective truth with an explicitly political, Marxist-leaning agenda aimed at empowerment and solidarity-building." (May)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062004819
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
05/17/2011
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
1,224,225
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.50(d)

Meet the Author

JONATHAN KAY is a managing editor, columnist and blogger at Canada’s National Post newspaper. His freelance articles have appeared in such publications as The New Yorker, The New York Times, Harper’s, Commentary magazine, Salon, Reader’s Digest and Newsweek. He is a visiting fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington, D.C. His first book, The Volunteer, co-authored with Michael Ross, became a top-ten bestseller in 2007.

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Among the Truthers: A Journey Through America's Growing Conspiracist Underground 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
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Includes fascinating subject matter &thoughtful critique
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