Critical Literacy on Conspiracy Theories

Call for proposals: Small projects 
Trajanje: 1 Mar 2022–20 Feb 2023
Project budget: 17,991.00 EUR 

In the last few decades we have witnessed the rise and spread of a wide variety of conspiracy theories, seen by many as credible explanations of the crises, events and social tendencies of the modern and contemporary world. Scientific, health, political and media institutions have failed to use their calls, warnings and criticism to prevent the rise of anti-vaccine and other conspiracy theories that emerged in relation to protective measures during the new coronavirus pandemic. This reveals a fundamental misunderstanding of the modern, mainly online, conspiracy theory movements, their conventions, diversity, history, and their complex connections to wider social life. Without a proper understanding of this culture, it is not possible to formulate effective critique and convincing alternatives to conspiracy theories and politics related to them.

Through this project, the Institute for Labour Studies, which is dedicated to research and educational activities in the field of critical social sciences, will equip the younger generation with scientific tools they will be able to use to effectively analyze and critique the conspiracy theories that spread across social networks and other online platforms. In doing so, we will not try to silence young people's dissatisfaction with the established political, media and scientific institutions, but rather encourage the redirection of this dissatisfaction to more productive forms of political participation, research or socially critical activities.

In cooperation with partners, the Institute will conduct a series of workshops and lectures and design a series of podcasts and video content on conspiracy theories and related social phenomena, while also encouraging discussion on major social networks such as Facebook, Instagram and TikTok.

Led by Pekarna Magdalenske mreže Maribor, the workshops and lectures will be held at various locations in Maribor with an emphasis on grammar schools and secondary schools. A series of podcasts will be included in the regular program of Radio MARŠ, and video content will be published on the Institute’s Youtube channel. All media content created as part of the project will also be available on our website.

Contact person: Nesa Vrečer


Project promoter: Institute for Labour Studies

Project partners: Zavod MARŠ, Pekarna Magdalenske mreže Maribor