Political Conspiracies in America

Political Conspiracies in America

A Reader
Distribution: World
Publication date: 03/19/2008
Format: Paperback 5 b&w photos
ISBN: 978-0-253-21964-0
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Conspiracy theories have been a part of the American experience since colonial times. There is a rich literature on conspiracies involving, among others, Masons, Catholics, Mormons, Jews, financiers, Communists, and internationalists. Although many conspiracy theories appear irrational, an exaggerated fear of a conspiracy sometimes proves to be well founded. This anthology provides students with documents relating to some of the more important and interesting conspiracy theories in American history and politics, some based on reality, many chiefly on paranoia. It provides a fascinating look at a persistent and at times troubling aspect of democratic society.

Author Bio

Donald T. Critchlow is Professor of History at St. Louis University and author of Phyllis Schlafly and Grassroots Conservatism and Studebaker: The Life and Death of an American Corporation (IUP, 1996).

John Korasick is a judicial archivist for the Missouri State Historical Archives.

Matthew C. Sherman is a doctoral candidate at St. Louis University.


An interesting and important reader. . . . [It] offers a powerful thematic approach that will prove popular with students and instructors alike.

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Table of Contents


Section 1. Conspiracy in a New Nation
Section 2. Conspiracy in an Age of Democracy
Section 3. Conspiracy in a Divided Nation
Section 4. Conspiracy in the Industrial Age through the New Deal
Section 5. Conspiracy in the Cold War Era
Section 6. Conspiracy in Contemporary America

For Further Reading