Fifty years on and the "Paul is dead" hoax has lost none of its power to fascinate on so many levels. Perhaps the most compelling angle for examination is how did something so clearly nonsensical in the light of day get disseminated so widely and not just dismissed out of hand? It seems that a perfect storm of circumstance gave it traction and resonance, with both what was happening within The Beatles and within the community most receptive to believing that truth was not what authority figures told us.
Helping unpack all of this is sociologist Candy Leonard, author of Beatleness. Her book covers the subject in some detail.