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This article surveys rumors and `contemporary legends' concerned with the contamination or adulteration of various commodities. The article compares common Euro-American folktales like the `Kentucky Fried Rat' or stories concerned with the explosive effects of Pop Rocks with southern African...
The fame of major stars, and especially dead ones, has been entangled throughout the 20th century with a religious vocabulary: the figures of apotheosis, ritual, cult, and sacrifice are the staple of the most banal analyses of high celebrity. I ask whether the idea of a religious dimension to...
This article engages with postcolonial theorizations of orientalism and challenges assumptions about the pervasiveness of imperial ideologies in Britain at the beginning of the century by exploring the adherence of Selfridges department store to the principle of `cosmopolitanism'. The aesthetic...
This article explores the proliferation of nonfiction narratives which warn of an impending global pandemic of African origin. Through a reading of four texts — Richard Preston's The Hot Zone , Laurie Garrett's The Coming Plague , Richard Kaplan's The Ends of the Earth , and Jeffrey Goldberg's...
This piece examines the proliferation of paranormal discourses around wireless and radio in the early decades of the century. Engaging popular fiction and parapsychological literature of the era, the article gives particular emphasis to the period's reigning image of 'the etheric ocean',...
This paper discusses recent policy calculations in the UK concerning the Internet and child protection issues. Through an analysis of official documents, conference presentations, interviews and press reports, a story is pieced together of the culture of policy making. Problems are made visible,...
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