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The Paranoid ApocalypseA Hundred-Year Retrospective on The Protocols of the Elders of Zion$
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Richard Landes and Steven T. Katz

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780814748923

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814748923.001.0001

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Anti-Semitism from Outer Space

Anti-Semitism from Outer Space

The Protocols in the UFO Subculture

(p.163) 12 Anti-Semitism from Outer Space
The Paranoid Apocalypse

Michael Barkun

NYU Press

This chapter explores the relationship between UFOs and the Protocols, in which beings from outer space “reveal” the fact that the Zionist conspiracy reaches into the worlds beyond ours. While the topic may prove humorous, it nevertheless reveals some epistemological vulnerabilities in the study of the Protocols. Having discarded the modernist grand narrative, these elaborate fantasy narratives adopt the Protocols without even bothering to address the critical issue of forgery. Furthermore, these narratives allow for the return of the Protocols, among other ways, by leveraging their status as “stigmatized knowledge.” As a result, a collection of discredited and fantastic ideas gains mutual affirmation—that the Protocols is true, that on their way to Earth are spaceships peopled with “Ascended Masters” carrying directions from Atlantis for the next evolutionary leap in humanity. Together, they make a compelling narrative attractive to far more people than “modern” intellectuals imagine.

Keywords:   UFOs, UFO subculture, stigmatized knowledge, Zionist conspiracy, espistemological vulnerabilities, modernist grand narrative, fantasy narratives

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