1st Edition

Conspiracy Theorizing Analysis and Scriptural Critique

By Gerald Arbuckle Copyright 2024

    Conspiracy Theorizing explore how individuals with the Christian faith should react to conspiracy theories, their untruths, and their dangers. This book outlines the way that conspiracy theories are the fundamental basis for this stigmatization and scapegoating. It goes further to explain that scapegoating is fostering extreme divisions within societies and between nations with each side often demonizing the other.

    This book states how conspiracy theories satisfy people’s needs for certainty, security, and a positive self-image in a world that they feel is disintegrating. Uncovering deeper, when the comforting securities of cultures crumble, paranoia makes sense. This book demonstrates that an inability to live with uncertainty and ambiguity draws people to conspiracy theories when they validate their apprehensions. The commentary in this book also validates that since conspiracy theories can never be verified by objective research and truths they are one of the most difficult subjects to uncover.

    This book aims to answer these questions: What are conspiracy theories? Why do they arise, especially in times of cultural upheavals? Are they harmful? What do the Christian Scriptures say about them? Readers interested in religion, Christianity, and conspiracy theories would enjoy this book.

    1. Gossip: The Breeding Ground of Conspiracy Theorizing 2. Conspiracy Theorizing Uncovered 3. Conspiracy Theorizing Drives Scapegoating, Populism, and Polarization 4. Conspiracy Theorizing and Magical Thinking: Is There a Connection? Conclusion


    Gerald A. Arbuckle, SM, theologian and Cambridge-trained social anthropologist is an award-winning author, and his most recent book is The Pandemic and the People of God. He was recently awarded an honorary Doctorate of the Australian Catholic University “for bringing the interplay between faith and reason to bear on complex religious and social policy issues."

    “Once again Gerald Arbuckle provides a timely, perceptive and original analysis and interpretation of one of the more salient features of today's world. He brings to bare on the subject wide-ranging knowledge and sheds light on one of the most critical socio-psychological challenges of our time.”

     Allan Figueroa Deck, SJ, Distinguished Scholar of Pastoral Theology in Residence, Loyola Marymount University

    “Succinct, clear, biblical and anthropological, Arbuckle confronts head on conspiracy thinking and its concurrent Christian fundamentalism.  He provides a set of tools, social and evangelical, as an antidote to the current crisis of knowledge in which fake news and conspiratorial thinking cloud truth and destroy communities.”

     Professor Gerard Moore, Principal BBI-The Australian Institute of Theological Education

    “An essential work for our time, this concise volume illumes the detrimental impact of conspiracy theories and their penchant to cause cultural chaos, fundamental biases, and scapegoating, that denigrates not just individuals and religions but entire ethnic groups and countries. This book by an internationally acclaimed cultural anthropologist is a work of common sense and contextual theology, one that assists us all to better read “the signs of the times”.  A fascinating read, it will be of use to numerous academic disciplines and resonate with all people of goodwill.”

     Professor Anthony Maher, Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture

    “I am amazed that such a small book can pack such a big punch in helping us understand where conspiracy theories come from, why they remain so persistent in light of scientific evidence to the contrary, and why they have such harmful consequences.  In this global era of rapid social and cultural change, where people are desperate to make sense out of their lives, it couldn’t be truer that Arbuckle’s insights and clear explanations are for such a time as this.  He brings to this book the rare combination of a cultural anthropologist and Scripture scholar to address the problems of conspiracy theorizing, but he doesn’t leave us there, he reminds us that faith in Christ is greater than the evil that can sometimes preoccupy us.”

     Darrell Whiteman, author of Crossing Cultures with the Gospel: Anthropological Wisdom for Effective Christian Witness.