Beyond the Hoax: Science, Philosophy and Culture
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Oxford University Press (2008)
In 1996, Alan Sokal, a Professor of Physics at New York University, wrote a paper for the cultural-studies journal Social Text, entitled: 'Transgressing the Boundaries: Towards a transformative hermeneutics of quantum gravity'. It was reviewed, accepted and published. Sokal immediately confessed that the whole article was a hoax - a cunningly worded paper designed to expose and parody the style of extreme postmodernist criticism of science. The story became front-page news around the world and triggered fierce and wide-ranging controversy. Sokal is one of the most powerful voices in the continuing debate about the status of evidence-based knowledge. In Beyond the Hoax he turns his attention to a new set of targets - pseudo-science, religion, and misinformation in public life. 'Whether my targets are the postmodernists of the left, the fundamentalists of the right, or the muddle-headed of all political and apolitical stripes, the bottom line is that clear thinking, combined with a respect for evidence, are of the utmost importance to the survival of the human race in the twenty-first century.' The book also includes a hugely illuminating annotated text of the Hoax itself, and a reflection on the furore it provoked.
|Keywords||Science Philosophy Evidence Pseudoscience Fraud in science|
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|Call number||Q175.S6395 2008|
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Emily A. Schultz, Fear of Scandalous Knowledge: Arguing About Coherence in Scientific Theory and Practice.
Alan Sokal, Letter to Physics Today in Reply to Peter Saulson's Review of My Book Beyond the Hoax: Science, Philosophy and Culture.
Paul Boghossian (1996). What the Sokal Hoax Ought to Teach Us. Times Literary Supplement.
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