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[Book Review]: "Conspiracy Theories and the People Who Believe in Them"
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CitationTurner, H. (2020). [Book Review]: "Conspiracy Theories and the People Who Believe in Them, by Joseph E. Uscinski Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2019, 511 pages, $31.95, ISBN: 9780190844080". Insight Turkey, 22(4), 284-287.
Joseph Uscinski’s multi-author volume attempts to bring together a wide range of disciplinary perspectives on the phenomena of conspiracy theories (CTs) into one book. Given the significant epistemological disagreements between the disciplines that exist in the field of conspiracy theory research, it is fair to say that Uscinski has done a good job in producing a volume that balances the opposing perspectives. The book is comprised of the views of 40 academics from across a host of different disciplines. The volume partly stems from a 2015 conference on CTs that was organized and hosted by Uscinski; at that conference, there was a clear disagreement between the philosophers and the psychologists/social psychologists on the importance of studying conspiracies as ideas or as mental formations. The philosophers accused the psychologists of pathologizing people who espouse CTs rather than assessing their truth claims and the reasoning of the ideas presented. The psychologists in turn accused the philosophers of merely asking more questions and not pursuing research programs.1 The book reflects and features this balkanized difference of approach...