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‘The earth is flat, believe me:’ the anatomy of consumption myths and alternative facts.

Competitive Session
9:25 AM, Friday 19 Jul 2019 (20 minutes)
This paper investigates the structure of a consumption myth in which ‘flat Earth’ proponents persuade consumers to believe that the Earth is flat, not round. Data constitute the flat-earthers' video explanations introducing their beliefs. We use narrative analysis to study the structure of the myth isomorphic to the narrative; hence, finding the myth ‘within’ the account. Results show how flat earthers curate the instructions for how to read their account as the truth, by framing consumer myths as narratives of selective coherence, first appealing to the postmodern incredulity towards authority, second vetting the facts allowed, and third instructing naïve empiricism.
The University of Auckland
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