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Definition

The idea or belief that many important events are the result of secret plots by an influential organisation most commonly the government that are largely unknown to the general public.

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Why i chose this

Degree - At university i am planning on studying sociology and criminology so i thought this topic went well with these subjects.

Personal interest - i find researching conspiracies very fascinating so i thought i'd do my epq on something i found interesting and had a background knowledge on.

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Aims and objectives

žTo expand my knowledge on popular conspiracy theories. ž žTo find out how conspiracies develop. ž žTo develop planning, organisation skills and learning and working independently to achieve a successful outcome whilst answering my initial question.

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Planning

žI used: Spider diagram  Log book  The AQA booklet To plan my project clearly.

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Research/Methodology Primary

divided my research into primary and secondary sources so i could explore a number of research paths.

Questionnaires: I handed these out to a large sample however its questionable how representative these results are as the majority of them were given out to a sampling frame of the same age. 

 Emailed conspiracy theorists: However i got no response from this so i couldnt take this into consideration when doing my research.


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Research/Methodology Secondary

žSecondary Research Websites Books TV documentaries Secondary sources were easier to find information on as they were more accessible and they also had a rich source of information. These were my questionnaire results

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Area 51

Area 51 which is also known as groom lake is a US air force base in Southern Nevada founded in the 1950's. The conspiracy surronding it is that it is a top secret base where the government undertake the examination of extra-terrestrial beings.

Conspiracies started circulating after the area was completely blocked off from the public and the American governement completely denied its existance.

 These grew ever further after Robert Lazar announced he had worked on reverse alien engineering at Area 51 in 1989 as people were still unsure of its existance.

In 1996 conspiracies surrounding this area were more popular than they had ever been due to Bruce Burgess' documentary where he interviewed a retired mechanical engineered worker claims to have worked with an extra-terrestrial name ‘J-Rod’ on the site of area 51. This was now 2 people who had claimed to have worked at this area but the government were still denying its existance. Then in 2004 žDan Burisch announced he had also worked with ‘J-Rod’ which made suspicious grow dramatically. but dan had probably just seen the original documentary and wanted to fuel conspiracies further.

  it wasnt until Soviet satillitte photos relased in 2000 that its existance was confirmed however the government still refuse to acknowledge its existance

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9/11

The conspiracy involving the events of September 9th say that there is more to the attacks than what we know.

WTC 7 - Most people are unaware that there were infact 3 buildings which collapsed which included WTC 7. Theorist argue that the collapse of WTC 7 happened under very suspicious circumstances as the building wasnt even hit by a plane but collapsed due to fire. This has never happened before and hasnt happened since. so this obviously created many suspicious about how it then completely collapsed in under 7 seconds.

Another conspiracy surrounding the attacks is that

Larry - Larry silverstein purchased the twin towers and privatised them 6 months before. He then took out a new insurance policy which happened to cover terrorism. Silverstein and his children didnt turn up to usual breakfast which they usually had at the top of the north tower. They all offered weak excuses such as being stuck in traffic. however theorists looked into it a found that traffic was all clear on that morning. After the attacks larry was able to take out 2 insurance claims and he insisted that they were 2 separate buildings and manged to claim 4.5 billion dollars

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JFK

Most popular theory  surrounding JFKs assassination.

this 'umbrella man' has been the object of much speculation. He was the only person seen carrying and opening an umbrella on this extremely sunny day. He was also one of the closest bystanders to President John F. Kennedy when Kennedy was first struck by a bullet. As Kennedy's limousine approached, the man opened up and lifted the umbrella high above his head, then spun the umbrella as the president passed by him. After the assassination, the "umbrella man" sat down on the sidewalk shortly, before getting up and walking towards the Texas School Book Depository.

One theory suggests that he simply acted as a signaller to a gunman and the more recent one proposes that the umbrella may have been used to fire a dart with a paralyzing agent at Kennedy to immobilize his muscles and make him an easy target for an assassination.  its since been discovered that such an umbrella weapon was in the hands of the CIA. which suggests that the CIA may have infact had an involvement in his death.

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Conclusion

žThere is much evidence that supports these theories, however there is just as much evidence against these theories. žUltimately comes down to personal belief of each conspiracy. žMuch evidence surrounding some conspiracies and less for others.

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What went well

Primary research

Motivation

Essay

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What could i improve

žThe questionnaire response rate ž žDo more primary research

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