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  1. Some Conspiracy Theories.M. R. X. Dentith - 2023 - Social Epistemology (4):522-534.
    A remarkable feature of the philosophical work on conspiracy theory theory has been that most philosophers agree there is nothing inherently problematic about conspiracy theories (AKA the thesis of particularism). Recent work, however, has challenged this consensus view, arguing that there really is something epistemically wrong with conspiracy theorising (AKA generalism). Are particularism and generalism incompatible? By looking at just how much particularists and generalists might have to give away to make their theoretical viewpoints compatible, I will argue that particularists (...)
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  2. Suspicious conspiracy theories.M. R. X. Dentith - 2022 - Synthese 200 (3):1-14.
    Conspiracy theories and conspiracy theorists have been accused of a great many sins, but are the conspiracy theories conspiracy theorists believe epistemically problematic? Well, according to some recent work, yes, they are. Yet a number of other philosophers like Brian L. Keeley, Charles Pigden, Kurtis Hagen, Lee Basham, and the like have argued ‘No!’ I will argue that there are features of certain conspiracy theories which license suspicion of such theories. I will also argue that these features only license a (...)
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  3. The Problem of Fake News.M. R. X. Dentith - 2016 - Public Reason 8 (1-2):65-79.
    Looking at the recent spate of claims about “fake news” which appear to be a new feature of political discourse, I argue that fake news presents an interesting problem in epistemology. Te phenomena of fake news trades upon tolerating a certain indiference towards truth, which is sometimes expressed insincerely by political actors. Tis indiference and insincerity, I argue, has been allowed to fourish due to the way in which we have set the terms of the “public” epistemology that maintains what (...)
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  4. Conspiracy theories on the basis of the evidence.M. R. X. Dentith - 2019 - Synthese 196 (6):2243-2261.
    Conspiracy theories are often portrayed as unwarranted beliefs, typically supported by suspicious kinds of evidence. Yet contemporary work in Philosophy argues provisional belief in conspiracy theories is—at the very—least understandable (because conspiracies occur) and if we take an evidential approach—judging individual conspiracy theories on their particular merits—belief in such theories turns out to be warranted in a range of cases. Drawing on this work, I examine the kinds of evidence typically associated with conspiracy theories, showing that the evidential problems typically (...)
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  5. Debunking conspiracy theories.M. R. X. Dentith - 2020 - Synthese 198 (10):9897-9911.
    In this paper I interrogate the notion of `debunking conspiracy theories’, arguing that the term `debunk’ carries with it pejorative implications, given that the verb `to debunk’ is commonly understood as `to show the wrongness of a thing or concept’. As such, the notion of `debunking conspiracy theories’ builds in the notion that such theories are not just wrong but ought to be shown as being wrong. I argue that we should avoid the term `debunk’ and focus on investigating conspiracy (...)
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  6. The Future of the Philosophy of Conspiracy Theory: An Introduction to the Special Issue on Conspiracy Theory Theory.M. R. X. Dentith - 2023 - Social Epistemology (4):405-412.
    Looking at the early work in the philosophy of conspiracy theory theory, I put in context the papers in this special issue on new work on conspiracy theory theory (itself the product of the 1st International Conference on the Philosophy of Conspiracy Theory held in February 2022), showing how this new generation of work not only grew out of, but is itself a novel extension of the first generation of philosophical interest in these things called ‘conspiracy theories’.
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  7. Expertise and Conspiracy Theories.M. R. X. Dentith - 2018 - Social Epistemology 32 (3):196-208.
    Judging the warrant of conspiracy theories can be difficult, and often we rely upon what the experts tell us when it comes to assessing whether particular conspiracy theories ought to be believed. However, whereas there are recognised experts in the sciences, I argue that only are is no such associated expertise when it comes to the things we call `conspiracy theories,' but that the conspiracy theorist has good reason to be suspicious of the role of expert endorsements when it comes (...)
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  8. Clearing Up Some Conceptual Confusions About Conspiracy Theory Theorizing.Martin Orr & M. R. X. Dentith - 2018 - In Matthew R. X. Dentith (ed.), Taking Conspiracy Theories Seriously. Rowman & Littlefield International. pp. 141-153.
    Orr and Dentith argue that a recurrent problem in much of the wider academic literature on conspiracy theories is either conceptual confusion or a refusal to put theory before practice. Orr and Dentith show that a naive empiricism pervades much of the social science literature when it comes to these things called ‘conspiracy theories’ which not only runs at odds with the philosophical literature but also the general tenor of the social sciences over the latter part of the 20th Century (...)
     
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  9. The applied epistemology of conspiracy theories: An overview.M. R. X. Dentith & Brian L. Keeley - 2018 - In David Coady & James Chase (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Applied Epistemology. New York: Routledge. pp. 284-294.
    An overview of the current epistemic literature concerning conspiracy theories, as well as indications for future research avenues on the topic.
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  10. Reconciling Conceptual Confusions in the Le Monde Debate on Conspiracy Theories, J.C.M. Duetz and M R. X. Dentith.Julia Duetz & M. R. X. Dentith - 2022 - Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 10 (11):40-50.
    This reply to an ongoing debate between conspiracy theory researchers from different disciplines exposes the conceptual confusions that underlie some of the disagreements in conspiracy theory research. Reconciling these conceptual confusions is important because conspiracy theories are a multidisciplinary topic and a profound understanding of them requires integrative insights from different fields. Specifically, we distinguish research focussing on conspiracy *theories* (and theorizing) from research of conspiracy *belief* (and mindset, theorists) and explain how particularism with regards to conspiracy theories does not (...)
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  11. Avoiding the Stereotyping of the Philosophy of Conspiracy Theories: A Reply to Hill.M. R. X. Dentith - 2022 - Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 11 (8):41-49.
    I’m to push back on Hill’s (2022) criticism in four ways. First: we need some context for the debate that occurred in the pages of the Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective that so concerns Hill. Second: getting precise with our terminology (and not working with stereotypes) is the only theoretically fruitful way to approach the problem of conspiracy theories. Third: I address Hill’s claim there is no evidence George W. Bush or Tony Blair accused their critics, during the build-up (...)
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  12. Corresponding Conspiracy Theorists.M. R. X. Dentith & Patrick Stokes - 2024 - Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 13 (5):15-32.
  13. The Philosophy of Conspiracy Theory: Bringing the Epistemology of a Freighted Term into the Social Sciences.M. R. X. Dentith - 2018 - In Joseph Uscinski (ed.), Conspiracy Theories and the People Who Believe Them. Oxford University Press. pp. 94-108.
    An analysis of the recent efforts to define what counts as a "conspiracy theory", in which I argue that the philosophical and non-pejorative definition best captures the phenomenon researchers of conspiracy theory wish to interrogate.
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  14. Taking conspiracy theories seriously and investigating them.M. R. X. Dentith - 2018 - In Matthew R. X. Dentith (ed.), Taking Conspiracy Theories Seriously. Rowman & Littlefield International. pp. 217-225.
    In this concluding chapter Dentith presents a synthesis of the views on offer, arguing that the various philosophical, sociological and psychology theses defended in this section point towards a necessary reorientation of the literature, one which requires we purge public discourse of the pejorative aspects of the terms ‘conspiracy theory’ and ‘conspiracy theorist’ and, rather, engage with conspiracy theories as theories (like we do with theories in the Sciences and the Social Sciences) appraising them on their particular merits. Not just (...)
     
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  15. The Iniquity of the Conspiracy Inquirers.M. R. X. Dentith - 2019 - Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 8 (8):1-11.
    A reply to “Why ‘Healthy Conspiracy Theories’ Are (Oxy)morons” by Pascal Wagner-Egger, Gérald Bronner, Sylvain Delouvée, Sebastian Dieguez and Nicolas Gauvrit.
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  16. What is fake news?M. R. X. Dentith - 2018 - University of Bucharest Review (2):24-34.
    Talk of fake news is rife in contemporary politics, but what is fake news, and how, if anything, does it differ from news which is fake? I argue that in order to make sense of the phenomenon of fake news, it is necessary to first define it and then show what does and does not fall under the rubric of ‘fake news’. I then go on to argue that fake news is not a new problem. Rather, if there is problem (...)
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  17. The Conspiracy Theory Theorists and Their Attitude Towards Conspiracy Theory—Introduction to Section Two.M. R. X. Dentith - 2018 - In Matthew R. X. Dentith (ed.), Taking Conspiracy Theories Seriously. Rowman & Littlefield International. pp. 73-77.
    An introduction to section two, which introduces and summarises two recent critiques of belief in conspiracy theories by social scientists, as well as introducing the various arguments in the section.
     
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  18. Does the Phrase “Conspiracy Theory” Matter?M. R. X. Dentith, Ginna Husting & Martin Orr - 2023 - Society.
    Research on conspiracy theories has proliferated since 2016, in part due to the US election of President Trump, the COVID-19 pandemic, and increasingly threatening environmental conditions. In the rush to publication given these concerning social consequences, researchers have increasingly treated as definitive a 2016 paper by Michael Wood (Political Psychology, 37(5), 695–705, 2016) that concludes that the phrase “conspiracy theory” has no negative effect upon people’s willingness to endorse a claim. We revisit Wood’s findings and its (re)uptake in the recent (...)
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  19. What particularism about conspiracy theories entails.M. R. X. Dentith - 2018 - In Matthew R. X. Dentith (ed.), Taking Conspiracy Theories Seriously. Rowman & Littlefield International. pp. 59-69.
    In What particularism about conspiracy theories entails Dentith responds to their critics and examines the case for a refined and revised thesis of Particularism, the argument that we should appraise individual and particular conspiracy theories rather than appraise them in light of our views of the class of conspiracy theories generally. Recent work in the Philosophy of Conspiracy Theories has presented challenges to Particularism simpliciter (or Naive Particularism). Dentith argues that by facing these challenges Particularism presents an even stronger case (...)
     
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  20. The Psychologists’ Conspiracy Panic: They Seek to Cure Everyone.M. R. X. Dentith & Dr Dr Lee Basham - 2018 - In Matthew R. X. Dentith (ed.), Taking Conspiracy Theories Seriously. Rowman & Littlefield International. pp. 79-93.
    Basham and Dentith argue that the danger of condemning both conspiracy theorists and their conspiracy theories in a democracy has grave consequences. They argue that we should encourage research into public concerns about influential institutions, especially in cases where a conspiracy has been alleged. Rather than dismiss conspiracy theorising, we should, encourage the politically crucial, historically proven gift of watchfulness in the citizen, and its sometimes necessary, proper and correct expression, conspiracy theory.
     
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  21. A (naive) view of conspiracy as collective action.M. R. X. Dentith - 2018 - Filosofia E Collettività 22:61-71.
    Conspiracies are, by definition, a group activity; to conspire requires two or more people working together towards some end, typically in secret. Conspirators have intentions; this is borne out by the fact they want some end and are willing to engage in action to achieve. Of course, what these intentions are can be hard to fathom: historians have written a lot about the intentions of the assassins of Julius Caesar, for example; did they want to restore the Republic; was Marcus (...)
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  22. 'I-know-it-when-I-see-it' - Motivating Examples in the Social Psychology of Conspiracy Theory Theory.M. R. X. Dentith - 2023 - Misinformation and Conspiracy Theories.
    Looking at set of 76 representative articles published by social psychologists between 2017 and 2023 (reviewed between December 2022 and February 2023), I examine the role of motivating examples---a kind of illustrative example, typically used by researchers at the beginning of their work to motivate the issue or problem they want to resolve or address in that work---in the social psychological work on conspiracy theory. Through an examination of the language around how motivating examples are introduced and used in the (...)
     
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  23.  36
    The Philosophy of Conspiracy Theories: Concepts, Methods and Theory.M. R. X. Dentith (ed.) - 2024 - Routledge.
    This book presents state of the art philosophical work on conspiracy theory research that brings in sharp focus on central and important insights concerning the supposed irrationality of conspiracy theory and conspiracy theory belief, while also proposing several novel solutions to long standing issues in the broader academic debate on these things called ‘conspiracy theories’. -/- It features a critical history of conspiracy theory theory, emphasising the role of the ‘first generation’ of philosophers in conspiracy theory research. This book also (...)
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  24.  70
    Taking Account of Conspiracy Theorising.M. R. X. Dentith - 2019 - Colloquium.
    In this paper I both summarise the recent volume "Taking Conspiracy Theories Seriously" (Rowman and Littlefield, 2018) and argue as to why we should investigate conspiracy theories rather than assume they are false or irrational by definition.
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  25. Introduction.M. R. X. Dentith - 2018 - In Matthew R. X. Dentith (ed.), Taking Conspiracy Theories Seriously. Rowman & Littlefield International.
    An introduction to section one, introducing the various arguments in the section, and the common features of the critique of Dentith’s paper, When inferring to a conspiracy theory might be the best explanation.
     
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  26. Conspiracy Theories, Quassim Cassam, 2019. Cambridge, Polity Press, vii + 127 pp, USD45 (hb) USD12.95. [REVIEW]M. R. X. Dentith - 2020 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 37 (5):895-897.
  27. Between Forteana and Skepticism. [REVIEW]M. R. X. Dentith - 2018 - Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 7 (11):48-52.
    A review of Bernard Will's "Believing Weird Things".
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  28. Politics, Deception, and Being Self-Deceived. [REVIEW]M. R. X. Dentith - 2019 - Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 8 (4):38-43.
    A review of Anna Elisabeth Galeotti's "Political Self-Deception".
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