Joseph Uscinski is a wanted man.

At least, he has been since last week, when the presence of a bunch of people wearing “Q” T-shirts at a Trump rally catapulted a bizarre conspiracy theory from the fringes of the internet to the center of the news. (The theory is hard to parse, but suffice it to say that it involves Hillary Clinton, the “deep state,” and child sex trafficking.) Suddenly reporters and news producers wanted to talk about how people come to believe in outlandish stories about powerful people, and how those beliefs seem to be shaping American politics.

So they turned to Uscinski, an associate professor of political science at the University of Miami. A co-author of American Conspiracy Theories (Oxford University Press, 2014), Uscinski has become an explainer of conspiracy theorists — and, occasionally, an object of their suspicion. After all, as someone on Twitter recently pointed out, the professor’s name appeared in an article that somebody emailed to John Podesta, the chairman of Hillary Clinton’s campaign, in 2014 …

The Chronicle of Higher Education