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Mysteries, Conspiracies, and Inquiries: Reflections on the Power of Superstition, Suspicion, and Scrutiny

Susen, S. ORCID: 0000-0003-0643-1891 (2021). Mysteries, Conspiracies, and Inquiries: Reflections on the Power of Superstition, Suspicion, and Scrutiny. SocietàMutamentoPolitica: Rivista Italiana di Sociologia, 12(23), pp. 25-62. doi: 10.36253/smp-12996

Abstract

The main purpose of this paper is to provide a critical analysis of Luc Boltanski’s account of the multifaceted relationship between mysteries, conspiracies, and inquiries in modern societies. It is striking that, although this important aspect of Boltanski’s oeuvre has been commented on by several scholars, his principal contributions to this area of investigation have been largely overlooked and received hardly any serious attention by researchers in the humanities and social sciences. This paper is an attempt to fill this noticeable gap in the literature. Thus, rather than covering the entire breadth and depth of Boltanski’s writings, the paper will focus on the valuable insights his work offers into the relationship between mysteries, conspiracies, and inquiries. To this end, the analysis is divided into two parts. The first part comprises an overview of Boltanski’s central theoretical contributions to our understanding of mysteries, conspiracies, and inquiries. The second part offers some critical reflections on important issues arising from Boltanski’s examination of the relationship between mysteries, conspiracies, and inquiries – especially with regard to its limitations and shortcomings.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2021 Simon Susen. This is an open access, peer-reviewed article published by Firenze University Press (http://www.fupress.com/smp) and distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Publisher Keywords: Conspiracies, Inquiries, Karl Popper, Luc Boltanski, Mysteries, Power, Reality, World
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Departments: School of Arts & Social Sciences > Sociology
Date available in CRO: 20 Jul 2021 10:26
Date deposited: 20 July 2021
Date of acceptance: 3 May 2021
Date of first online publication: 20 July 2021
URI: https://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/26474
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