Ten percent of the global population believed that the world would end on December 21, 2012. But people have believed that the world was going to end before. What causes these apocalyptic crazes and what allows them to spread beyond the fringes of society? What role does popular religion play in creating or spreading apocalyptic hysteria? How do these prophets of doom react when the world still exists past its predicted date of expiration? What about the people who believed them?
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