Millions of people disbelieve official explanations for significant political and social events in favour of alternative accounts that are often called ‘conspiracy theories’. For example, well known conspiracy theories suppose that the 9/11 attacks were an inside job, that climate change is a hoax, and that Princess Diana was murdered by the British government. Conspiracy theories like these are very popular – about half of the population believes at least one – and in recent years psychologists have been investigating what makes these conspiracy theories appealing to so many people. In this talk, Karen Douglas will discuss why conspiracy theories are popular, who is more likely to believe them (and why), and what some of the potential consequences of conspiracy theories are for politics, health, and the environment.
Karen Douglas is a Professor in Social Psychology at the University of Kent. In addition to conducting work on the psychology of conspiracy theories, she is involved in projects examining sexism in language, the influence of sexist ideology on attitudes toward pregnant women, and the psychology of internet behaviour.
Doors 2.45pm. Start 3pm.
Entry £8, £4 concessions (free to Conway Hall Ethical Society members, who should book these tickets in advance
Event is subject to capacity, without exceptions. Space will be reserved for ticket holders.
Brockway Room (Ground floor – accessible. Induction loop audio).