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Fiction Over Facts: Political Narrative’s Meat In The Sandwich

12 mins 1 mth

Sam Lebovic in his 2023 book State Of Silence revealed the prominent place of fictional novels in the development of espionage legislation at the turn of the 20C. In Britain, the emergence of the spy novel genre fed directly into the appetite of the public and legislators to lay the groundwork for the national security state. The United States followed suit via the creation of the Espionage Act in 1917, as concerns about German spies were inflamed around WW1. Protecting national interests from the dastardly deeds of foreign spies on American soil became an emerging key role for government. The FBI would  rise up under Director Hoover and reach its early apogee during the WW2 Nazi spy ring arrests in the US. The ever increasing power of the national security state and its many agencies throughout the 20C would see more state secrets kept from the people. This has created the deep distrust and proliferation of conspiracy theories in America today. Much of this is fed via fiction presented on TV, at cinemas, in books, and increasingly on social media platforms. Quite simply the general public has far greater access to entertainment than it does to any real facts when it comes to issues pertaining to national security. Fiction over facts: Political narrative’s meat in the sandwich.

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