Political fiction novels… Are they responsible for the spread of the “conspiracy theory”?
Recently, it has gained great popularity and commercial popularity
Monday – 16 Jumada II 1444 AH – 9 January 2023 AD Issue No. [
Dan Brown – Umberto Eco – James Alroy
Paris: Anisa Makhaldi
Conspiracy theories function as a simple network to analyze a complex reality, i.e. they provide an explanation in the midst of uncertainty and they attract the most; Because it helps to find meaning in a confusing and chaotic world, or as Tocqueville wrote in “Democracy in America”: “A wrong but clear and precise idea will be stronger in the world than a correct but complex idea. ..”. And because it is a work of fiction that assumes the existence of secret groups pulling the strings behind the scenes and villains plotting to control the world in dark, smoky rooms, conspiratorial theses are also a source of inspiration for novels and literary productions that aim to explain or give meaning to events, by including them within a large-scale global conspiracy so that none of these events remain accidental and meaningless. The controversy centers around the impact of digital informatics, social media and psychological, social and cultural factors on exacerbating these theories. However, very few studies deal with the literary references that encouraged the emergence of this irrational thinking, although “conspiratorial” literature is present, so to speak, in the detective novel and the novel of political and historical fiction, which have recently been popular and commercially unparalleled .
Recently, researcher Peter Knight, professor of literature at the University of Manchester and author of the book “Conspiracy Culture, or Conspiracy Culture,” wrote an article in the French newspaper “Le Monde” entitled: “Many conspiracy theories are in imagination born,” in which he says the following: “Although literature He had long been interested in the subject of conspiracy and secret societies, it was therefore necessary to wait for the nineteenth century for the intrigue to become a central element to become in the novel complex of the so-called (secret society novel) in Germany or “Secret Bard Novel.”
At the same time, some British writers were fascinated by the specter of Masonic secret societies, and the Italian and Irish conspiracy against the government, and at the turn of the twentieth century the detective novel and the thriller novel (Trailer) began to win. fame and recognition when they relied on the conspiracy as a plot with Alan Edgar Poe and Henry James who loves short stories. laden with unsolvable mysteries…”.
Alexi Broca, writer and journalist for the literary magazine “Magazine Letterer,” went further when he spoke on the radio waves of “France Culture” in a program entitled “Conspiracy Theories in Literature” about “The Library of Paranoia”, which includes in his shelves the publications of creators infected with what he calls “paranoia.” Creative” or “creative stalking psychosis”, where they invent stories in which the hero (who is often a white male) feels that his freedom and identity – and even his physical integrity – are threatened by falling under the control of mysterious forces. To to explain what is happening, the conspiracy theory is presented as a way to understand the vague regimes and mysterious events in which the conspiracy is no longer a foreign one aiming to infiltrate the nation, but rather a threat which comes from within and is more mysterious and sleepy.” The French writer adds that the name of the novelist Howard Phillips Lovecraft may have been placed at the top of the list of “conspiracy” writers. The latter wrote works for us throughout his life explaining that the world is not what we think, and that strange beings in fact rule, and although the author himself did not believe in these conspiratorial theses, the impact on readers, especially young people …». The works of the novelist Howard Phillips Lovecraft have been widely quoted in films and television, and achieved great success, especially the stories of intelligent creepy creatures who secretly control the fate of humanity by taking the place of important figures in politics and business, such novels left their impact and led to the rise of causing outlandish rumours, such as those targeting former New Zealand Prime Minister John Kay, who was forced to appear in the media in 2014 to deny ridiculous rumors claiming that he is a “creepy beast” that comes from outer space. , he declared in a sarcastic tone in front of the cameras: “I visited the doctor and the vet, and both of them assured me that I’m not creepy… and I’m here to declare that I still never visited a spaceship and I have no green uniform.” And while Love Croft used the element of conspiracy to add excitement to his plots, his American compatriot Dan Brown believed in all the conspiracy theories contained in his writings, and even strove to promote them. It is he who in the introduction until his novel “The Da Vinci Code” wrote that everything written in the novel was documented and inspired by real events, although many professors and researchers have proven the exact opposite with conclusive evidence.
In his last work before his departure in 2016, “Number Zero”, Umberto Eco, the famous novelist and author of the famous novel “The Name of the Rose”, proposed a new history writing, as he presented, through the words from Romano, the journalist, another fact regarding the fascist leader Mussolini, as he was not the one who was executed on April 28 (April) 1945, but it was similar! Why did the Duce refuse to meet his family in Como? Because she would have noticed the deception. Why did Petacci, the dictator’s mistress, want to die with the fake Mussolini? To save the real one, the original one was handed over to the Archbishop of Milan and, like other fascists, shipped to Argentina with the help of the Vatican, where it was protected by the B2 Masonic Chamber (which actually exists), which tried to restore him to power in 1970. All these theories are explained by Umberto Eco over twenty pages, and strictly give the impression that the author himself is convinced of the ambiguity of history.
On the shelves of the “conspiracy” library we also find the novelist James Alroy, author of the famous novel “The Black Dahlia”, and he, along with Don Duillo, is the most important American writer who dealt with the assassination in their works. of President John F. Kennedy. Alroy presented his conspiracy theory in the political fantasy novel “American Tabloid”, which links the assassination of President John F. Kennedy to the Cuban government and the US intelligence service, which contributed to the knot of mafia gangs and actress Marilyn Monroe. And all the events of James Alroy’s novels take place against the background of malicious political intrigues that end with vague and uncertain endings that leave the reader wondering if the clues he is tracking are just deceptions or camouflages.
It is notable that some of these authors have made an excellent comeback in recent times, although their literary productions were published decades ago. Many press reports have revealed that George Orwell’s novel “1984”, which paints a picture of a totalitarian world based on the appearance of a culture of surveillance, and the breakdown of all forms of trust that can arise between individuals , has returned strongly to the shelves. of international libraries, and became very popular after more than seventy years of its publication. Especially after the US President Trump came to power, as it was one of the best-selling novels on the Amazon platform in the United States and Russia. In France, the French newspaper “Le Figaro” revealed that Orwell’s novel “1984” was one of the most searched words in the “Google” search engine, and the name of this dystopian novel was associated with the “Corona” pandemic, as the hashtag “Covid” was the most spread during that period. So much so that the novel knew a second life, and even became a symbol of resistance against all supporters of conspiratorial theses who widely promoted the idea that the epidemic was a big lie designed to divert the people’s attention off.
Researcher Peter Knight, professor of literature at the University of Manchester, went further when he connected the conspiratorial theses presented by this kind of work to serious and unexpected consequences in real life, such as the incident of the seizure of the US Congress (Capitol) in Washington on January 6 (January) 2021, as if it were an imitation of “The Turner Notebooks”, a 1978 novel that dives into the world of conspiracy and imagines a terrible uprising by racists who for white supremacy ask. The novel was written by William Luther Peirce, a writer and researcher known for his racist connections to the Nazi Wyeth Power movement. This anti-government narrative influenced Timothy McVeigh, who in 1995 bombed a federal building in Oklahoma City, killing 168 people.