Beyond the Hoax Science, Philosophy and Culture

ISBN-10: 0199561834
ISBN-13: 9780199561834
Edition: 2010
Authors: Alan Sokal
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Description: 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,  More...

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Book details

Copyright year: 2010
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 2/11/2010
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 488
Size: 7.00" wide x 10.00" long x 1.25" tall
Weight: 2.112

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 becamefront-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 utmostimportance 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.

The Social Text Affair
Transgressing the boundaries: Towards a transformative hermeneutics of quantum gravity [annotated version]
Transgressing the boundaries: An afterword
Truth, reason, objectivity, and the Left
Science studies: Less than meets the eye
What the Social Text affair does and does not prove
Science and Philosophy
Cognitive relativism in the philosophy of science
Defense of a modest scientific realism
Science and Culture
Pseudoscience and postmodernism: Antagonists or fellow-travelers?
Religion, politics and survival
Epilogue: Epistemology and ethics
Index

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