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Conspiracy Theories and the People Who Believe Them$
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Joseph E. Uscinski

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190844073

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190844073.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 12 April 2021

The Truth Is Around Here Somewhere

The Truth Is Around Here Somewhere

Integrating the Research on Conspiracy Beliefs

(p.269) 18 The Truth Is Around Here Somewhere
Conspiracy Theories and the People Who Believe Them

Preston R. Bost

Oxford University Press

Recent years have seen a sharp acceleration in the publication of empirical studies on conspiracy beliefs. Collectively this work demonstrates markers of an energized but exploratory field still seeking theoretical focus and depth. The research has arrived at an inflection point that will lead to increased expectations for theory-driven work that tests specific predictions and arrives at answers with the potential to improve public discourse about conspiracy theories. Three specific lines of research can advance our understanding of the place of conspiracy beliefs in adaptive cognition: clearly defining the phenomenon under investigation, exploring the situational factors that contribute to conspiracy beliefs, and testing the positive as well as negative outcomes that result from conspiracy beliefs.

Keywords:   conspiracy beliefs, conspiracy theories, cognitive processes, threat perception, cognitive biases, suspicion, rationality

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