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"No theory holds together:" suspicion, its plotters, and the patterns of imaginative reason in (re-)conceptualizing digital conspiracist discourse

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dc.contributor Aalto-yliopisto fi
dc.contributor Aalto University en
dc.contributor.author Sorokin, Siim
dc.date.accessioned 2021-11-24T14:40:28Z
dc.date.available 2021-11-24T14:40:28Z
dc.date.issued 2021
dc.identifier.issn 2489-6748 (electronic)
dc.identifier.uri https://aaltodoc.aalto.fi/handle/123456789/111277
dc.description.abstract Arguably, our (post)modern age engenders suspicion and (explanatory) uncertainty, prompting epistemic instability, eroding veracity conditions and causing rational skepticism and distrust. This throws into sharp relief the leading pathologizing or stigmatizing scholarly evaluation of the practice of conspiracy theorizing. Especially insofar as the proliferation and stratification of competing (and power-differentiated) stories and knowledge representations are concerned. In challenging the validity of such conventional wisdom, this multidisciplinary essay broadly follows the critical “particularist” philosophical perspective. I will highlight the doubly collaborative activity underscoring digital conspiracism: The Latin etymology of “to conspire” (“to breathe together”) and the storytelling dimension of “to plot” (“plotting a story”). Two notions will be introduced: contra-plotting and plotters of suspicion. Both elaborate on the ubiquitous role of narrative, for plotting necessitates an indefinitely expanding “middle” communally self-reproduced through “continual interpretation” – precluding the final acceptability of any resolution (sections 1-2). The third section offers an illustrative qualitative analysis of ‘natural’ discursive data. The sample of forum posts on the MS Estonia’s catastrophic shipwreck is taken from the bilingual (Estonian-English) conspiracy forum Para-Web and broader (motif- and theme-oriented) plotting tendencies are identified. The essay concludes with some summarizing thoughts and suggestions for further research (section 4). en
dc.format.extent Pages 55-75
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher Aalto University en
dc.publisher Aalto-yliopisto fi
dc.relation.ispartofseries POPULAR INQUIRY: The Journal of the Aesthetics of Kitsch, Camp and Mass Culture en
dc.relation.ispartofseries 5(2021):1
dc.subject.other Philosophy en
dc.title "No theory holds together:" suspicion, its plotters, and the patterns of imaginative reason in (re-)conceptualizing digital conspiracist discourse en
dc.type J Muu elektroninen julkaisu fi
dc.subject.keyword Contra-plotting en
dc.subject.keyword Plotters of Suspicion en
dc.subject.keyword (explanatory) Uncertainty en
dc.subject.keyword Behindo-logy en
dc.subject.keyword Narrative patterns en
dc.subject.keyword MS Estonia en
dc.identifier.urn URN:NBN:fi:aalto-2021112410433
dc.type.dcmitype text en
local.aalto.formfolder 2021_11_24_klo_12_47

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