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The Rough Guide to Conspiracy Theories 2 (Rough Guide Reference) Paperback – October 20, 2008

11 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


. . . a succinct compilation of all the best in lunatic, eccentric and sometimes worryingly plausible schemes. -- What’s On in London, 5 Oct 2005

...pick up a box-set of X-Files and spit at official government explanations...that's no bad thing in a democracy. -- Sunday Sport, 16 Oct 2005

A readable, informative, level headed look at over 80 of the best known and researched conspiracies -- Lobster Magazine, December 2005

A snappy, thought-provoking book -- Nottingham Evening Post, 15 Oct 2005 --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

James McConnachie authored the first edition of The Rough Guide to Conspiracy Theories and the best-selling Rough Guide to the Da Vinci code. Robin Tudge has written extensively on the subject of conspiracy theories for the national press


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Product Details

  • Series: Rough Guide Reference
  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Rough Guides; 2 edition (October 20, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1858282810
  • ISBN-13: 978-1858282817
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,704,465 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

36 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Jerry Goodman on October 13, 2005
Format: Paperback
I bought this book as something I could dip into but found I couldn't put it down!

It was full of conspiracy theories I'd never heard of as well as fascinating insights into the classics, like JFK and the Dead Sea scrolls. The authors seemed open-minded and realistic in equal measure - just the right balance. Established theories and crackpot conspiracies were all analysed with the same even-handed logic. Excellent stuff.
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By The Anticonspirator on December 13, 2007
Format: Paperback
this is a praiseworthy collection of so many theories of conspiracy. i was honestly enlightened about the poisoning of Mozart. then i found myself reading about the Yakuza and organized crime. Echelon, the Manhattan project, and Area 51 are in this book too. the Illuminati can be found in various chapters and of course Lennon is analyzed thoroughly. theories about the war in Iraq are plentiful and there are -not surprisingly- many alleged conspiracies involving Swiss banks as well. Assassinations, Nazis, the Taliban, the Imf, CIA, Onassis, Nasa, Satan, Pinochet, Informants, Roswell, Apollo 11, Tesla, Oklahoma bombing, Rwandan genocide. need i go on?
i have five words for this collection of historical events and legendary people:
Glorious. Magnificent. Absorbing. Intriguing. Luminous
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Tim Johnson on March 13, 2008
Format: Paperback
I purchased this book some months ago and have been reading it in bits and pieces since then and there are still little portions that I have yet to examine. Having said that, I am still rating it highly because it is such a tremendously useful tool to possess for all people who read modern history. I admit it: I am a conspiracist. Using one of those tired old cliche's, "where there is smoke there is fire" and from where I am sitting the whole damn forest is burning.

I love the conservatives who continually paint people like me with the dreaded brush of "left-wing conspiracy nut" whenever writers believe that there is more to the story than that which is printed in the headlines of virtually any American newspaper or is heard on Fox News.
By using that kind of language the ideas or theories of the writer are totally blanketed with this comical rubric and no further serious notice need be taken of such laughable ideas. Hence no more investigation that could concievably uncover something that might lead to uncomfortable questions being asked.

This Rough Guide is truly encompassing both historically and comtemporarily; it discusses in enough depth so many of the loose ends in history to, I believe, satisfy all but the scholars of a particular area. This is not to say that the book positively accepts conspiracy theories as a group, rather, the authors look dispassionately at the arguments from most angles and leave the reader to decide for themselves.

In my opinion, the authors placed all the material facts before the reader and gave the reader, therefore, all the necessary factual material with which to make an educated decision about the particular event of group under consideration.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By TLR on September 3, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A breathtaking look at numerous conspiracy theories and coverups, some of which I hadn't heard of. For the most part, the authors stay objective and just present the facts. The entries are short and to the point, contain quite a bit of information, and lists of books and websites if you're interested in learning more (these lists could sometimes be better, though, especially on the JFK assassination).

The chapter "Italy: Land of Conspiracy" is a good example: "Everything is political in Italy, and everything is a conspiracy - history included. The country is divided between Left and Right in a way that makes the American divide between pro- and anti-Bush camps look shallow and inconsequential..." You'll learn about Gladio and the Strategy of Tension, the Ordine Nuovo, the murder of Aldo Moro, the Vatican Bank, the P2 lodge, and Licio Gellio.
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Format: Paperback
The Introduction to this 2005 book (there is a revised/expanded 2008 edition that I have not read) states, "this is a guide not to conspiracies, but to conspiracy theories. It doesn't freshly unveil hidden agendas or unmask sinister conspirators... this guide presents the world according to conspiracists, unleashing accusations, allegations and extreme explanations that are by turns brilliant, absurd, insightful, witty, nonsensical and sometimes outright insane."

There are dozens of theories (including various sub-variations) covered herein, categorized as: Assassinations and Downfalls; Mega-conspiracies and Master Plans; Miracles, Secrets and Lies: Conspiracies of Religion; The Land of the Free; Corporate Clampdown; Real Weapons of Mass Destruction; Calamities and Cover-ups; Warplay, etc. Each subtopic is followed by a list of Sources (including books, and websites), which are briefly and very helpfully summarized. (There are seldom any footnotes/sources noted within the articles themselves, but I'll let that one go.)

To give some examples, "In 1924, the publication of Nesta H. Webster's Secret Societies and Subversive Movements catapulted the myth of the Illuminati out of the eighteenth century and right into the twenty-first." (Pg. 86) The author rejects a Masonic interpretation of our money, observing that "IN GOD WE TRUST" is written on our money, while the Masons were/are "conspiring to build an atheistic, self-interested state." (Pg. 117) He notes that the FEMA camps feared by conspiracists "were built under the Rex 84 program, designed to deal with a mass exodus of illegal aliens." (Pg.
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