The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells

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Was the (unintended?) duping of the American public by Welles' Halloween broadcast something that could have happened only in the 1930s? Have citizens become more sophisticated in their consumption of...

Was the (unintended?) duping of the American public by Welles' Halloween broadcast something that could have happened only in the 1930s? Have citizens become more sophisticated in their consumption of media?

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While the era in which "The War of the Worlds" was initially broadcast that evening of October 30, 1938, undoubtedly contributed to the mass hysteria that resulted from fears of an alien invasion, it is not unreasonble to suggest that such a reaction could have occurred during any period since then, right up to the present.

A similar broadcast during the early 1940s would likely have tapped into the public's paranoia about foreign invasion stemming from the actual activities of German espionage agents on U.S. soil and the presence of Japanese submarines off the U.S. Pacific coast.  Especially in the days following the attack at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, paranoia regarding a Japanese invasion was...

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