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A Culture of ConspiracyApocalyptic Visions in Contemporary America$
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Michael Barkun

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780520238053

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520238053.001.0001

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UFO Conspiracy Theories, 1975–1990

UFO Conspiracy Theories, 1975–1990

(p.79) Chapter 5 UFO Conspiracy Theories, 1975–1990
A Culture of Conspiracy

Michael Barkun

University of California Press

The Oklahoma City bombing brought New World Order ideas to the public attention. A segment of American culture straddles the divide between mainstream and deviant and encompasses millions of people: the UFO community. Those who are interested in UFOs, believe in them, or claim to have been contacted or abducted by them form a subculture knitted together by lecture circuits, Web sites, magazines, and conventions. Attitudes about UFOs contain the seeds of conspiracist thinking, for public attitudes are clearly at variance with the official position that there is no credible evidence that UFOs exist. Receptivity to New World Order ideas in some UFO circles was facilitated by two legends peculiar to the ufology milieu: the “men in black” story and the tale of underground bases. Gradually, the New World Order had found its way into UFO literature. The advantage for New World Order ideas of being placed in a UFO context has been a reduction in stigma.

Keywords:   UFO community, conspiracist thinking, New World Order, men in black, underground bases, ufology milieu

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