Journal article Open Access

On Political Conspiracy Theories*

Räikkä, Juha

I analyze the view that most political conspiracy theories should be rejected on the grounds that they embody "an almost nihilistic degree of skepticism". This view has been widely criticized, but I will aim to show that the objections presented so far are not wholly convincing. I will argue that the claim that most conspiracy theorists end in making claims of larger and larger conspiracies is mistaken, as the empirical evidence concerning conspiracy theories does not support such view. Expanding one's theory in the face of criticism has been only one strategy among many, and conspiracy theorists need not accept skepticism.
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