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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2007 > Apr > Apr 13

Space Babies And Flying Saucer Religions

From: Terry Colvin <fortean1.nul>
Date: Thu, 12 Apr 2007 23:57:33 -0400 (EDT)
Fwd Date: Fri, 13 Apr 2007 07:47:11 -0400
Subject: Space Babies And Flying Saucer Religions

Space Babies And Flying Saucer Religions

Title: Flying Saucerers; A Social History Of Ufology
Author: David Clarke, Andy Roberts
Publication type: Book (Paperback)
Publication Date: 17 April 2007
ISBN 978-1-905646-00-5
Number of pages: 231
Page size: 175 x 245
Price: Pounds 14.95

A new book lifts the lid on the sixty year history of Ufology,
and looks at some of the colourful characters who have defined
the movement in the UK. These include the founder of the world's
oldest UFO religion and the bizarre case of Cynthia Appleton,
who claimed that her child was a 'space baby'.

Dr David Clarke, lecturer in Journalism Studies at Sheffield
Hallam University and co-author of Flying Saucerers, a Social
History of Ufology, has been researching the folklore of Ufology
for two decades with colleague Andy Roberts. Stories from the
book include:

The Space Baby
Mum-of-two Cynthia Appleton claimed that she was visited in her
Birmingham semi by beings from Venus in November 1957, one month
after the launch of the first space satellite, Sputnik 1. The
story took an even more bizarre turn in 1959, when the aliens
told Cynthia she was going to give birth to a baby
from Venus.

Her strange visitors insisted the child would be a boy and
should be named Matthew. They said he would become a 'leader of
men' at the age of 14. Just after midnight on 2 June 1959
Matthew was indeed born and press reports show that at 13 months
there were no obvious signs of his amazing future. The book
tells the full story up to the present day.

UFO cult investigated by Special Branch
A London taxi-driver, George King, founded a small cult in 1954
that grew to become an influential New Religious Movement with
thousands of followers and branches across the world. The
Aetherius Society was formed after King, a yoga devotee, claimed
to have heard a disembodied voice announce: 'Prepare yourself,
you are to become the voice of Interplanetary parliament',
whilst meditating in his Maida Vale flat.

King continued to channel telepathic messages from alien
intelligences until his death in 1997. His followers have
dedicated their lives to spreading these messages, which include
warnings of a future apocalypse and the dangers of atomic
experimentation. The book reveals how the society's pacifist,
anti-nuclear stance at the height of the Cold War brought them
to the attention of the Metropolitan Police Special Branch who
suspected the society might be a front for communists. Drawing
upon papers released under the Freedom of Information Act, the
book reveals how Special Branch sent undercover officers to
monitor a rally organised by the society against Government
secrecy on 'flying saucers' held in Trafalgar Square in 1958.

Dr Clarke said: "Belief in UFOs and aliens is a fruitful area of
research for social scientists but until recently the idea of
alien visitations as 'a modern myth' had received little
attention, possibly because it is a phenomenon that is occurring
here and now. For instance, an opinion poll in 1998 revealed
that almost a third of UK residents believe that
'extraterrestrial life has already visited earth' and two per
cent of those questioned claimed to have had direct experience
of alien visitations. Flying Saucerers examines how and why
people develop these types of beliefs. It examines how interest
in 'flying saucers' originated in the USA at the height of the
Cold War. When UFOs arrived here during the 1950s, the subject
quickly became a British obsession with its own clubs, magazines
and cast of famous believers which included celebrities such as
Lord Mountbatten, Prince Philip and Lord Dowding, of Battle of
Britain fame.

"The book isn't about UFO sightings and doesn't set out to
debunk the claims of those who have had UFO and other
extraordinary experiences. It is about the people who see,
investigate and write about UFOs and what has led them to
believe what they believe. Whatever opinion you hold, it cannot
be doubted that belief in UFOs and aliens has shaped modern
history and continues to do so."

Notes for editors
Flying Saucerers: A Social History of Ufology, by David Clarke
and Andy Roberts will be published by Heart of Albion Press on
17 April 2007.

Terry W. Colvin
Sierra Vista, Arizona

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