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For Damian Thompson, the misinformation industry is wreaking havoc on theories and spurious claims are forms of “counterknowledge,” and. For Damian Thompson, these unproven theories and spurious claims are forms of ‘counterknowledge’, and, helped by the internet, they are creating a global. Damian Thompson has invented a new word for this – “counterknowledge” – and has tried to give the whole flabby concept a bit of shape.

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In reality, we are more vulnerable than at any time for decades. Of course, where there really is an insurmountable evidence gap we should draw only tentative conclusions or suspend judgement altogether. An explanation for this is readily available. His coverage of intelligent design among Muslim groups was new to me, though I should have become suspicious at this point about his manner of blaming the “leftist” press.

The supernatural…does not provide us with any explanations that can be tested empirically. The book Counterknowledge by Damian Tho,pson is about conpiracy’s. Yet the makers of Loose Change are pushing at an open door. That Damian Thompson thompon points fingers and laughs surely is very enjoyable and entertaining.

My library Help Advanced Book Search. In any case, many technical errors arise during his contribution thoompson this quest for an alchemy of argumentation. I was unable to find a satisfying answer to the fundamental question of why counterknowledge is so appealing, or what makes it succeed.

I ckunterknowledge myself a little angry over all the “ridiculous, batty, ludicrous, and horseshit”: But some thought on his part might have led him to reflect that in cases where there is something to explain, gaps can be filled in by some means other than gathering more evidence.

Without sounding anti-Islamic, he rightly states that Islamic studies desperately Strictly 3 stars.

Amazon Rapids Fun stories for kids on the go. Instead of a well thought out response to people who embrace conspiracy theories, pseudoscience, and pseudo-history, it comes off as an angry rant, which makes it hard to take very seriously. This book is a great answer.

Lies, damn lies and ‘counterknowledge’ – Telegraph

Not coming from any easily deducible ideological angle, Thompson passionately defends coknterknowledge more complicated than factual truth, a concept in danger of being swept away by “a pandemic of credulous thinking. I enjoy reading books about skepticism and science, so thought this would be an interesting and informative read. Among all the tangled layers of non sequitur, misconception and outright nonsense, it is a relief to encounter a pair of errors which are quite simple to describe: Works can be labelled as pseudohistory for one or more of the following reasons Thompson’s uncalibrated indignation has the unfortunate side-effect of suggesting that every instance of ‘counterknowledge’ deserves equal condemnation, which ultimately hurts his argument, though not fatally.


Of far thompwon real concern is upsurge in narrowly vocational courses which threatens to turn much of academia into a provider to business of free employee training while depriving society of independent-minded thinkers, artists and others whose aspirations and concerns extend beyond the mere performance of technical tasks.

Cause you know, western institutions always protected us so well against junk science and junk history.

It is hard – even irrational – to resist the conclusion that some conspiracies might so far have been successfully kept secret – especially with the likes of Thompson performing such a valuable service in closing down debate. If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support? Why do people believe information they know to be a lie? Try the Kindle edition and experience these great reading features: This second category of testable-in-principle claims which are only accidentally untestable includes the thesis that the Chinese circumnavigated the globe before Magellan a claim Thompson targets and the central Christian doctrine that Christ rose from the dead which for obvious reasons he does not.

A quarter of British Muslims believe that “the British Government was involved in some way” with the London terrorist bombings of July 7, This book manages to dent its chances of getting a higher rating, thanks to the writer managing to contradict his own aforementioned arguments more than once.

Thompson makes numerous references to probability, most of them defective in one way or another. Pharmaceutical companies invest millions of pounds in drugs that have only marginal effect on our danian according to GlaxoSmithKline, 90 per thmopson of drugs work in only 30 to 50 per cent of patients.

T est results that show drugs to be harmful or ineffective are routinely suppressed, while researchers are paid to submit favourable articles – often ghost-written by the drug company – to counterknowledgf journals. May 19, Krishna Kumar rated it really liked it. The teachers and indeed the researchers appear to have accepted this misleading propaganda term uncritically. Account Options Sign in.


Apr 22, Steve Duffy rated it it was ok. All credit to Thompson for making this point: Most, indeed, are heard and rejected, many are criticized, most are ignored. Religious fundamentalists, both christian and muslim, get the worst of the author’s spleen, but there’s more than enough to go around — the British Royal Family, big business and senior faculty at universities also get named. September 11 conspiracy theories have gained such a tthompson in France that even a member of President Sarkozy’s government has suggested that President Bush might have planned the attacks.

He talks in depth about types of counterknowledge, from pseudohistory to quack medicine, and actually provides fascinating and very readable accounts of the origins of some of the specific beliefs he tackles.

To ask other readers questions about Counterknowledgeplease sign up. The president of South Africa is virtually an Aids denier, which cannot inspire much confidence in his country’s health service.

Lies, damn lies and ‘counterknowledge’

You may know someone who thinks the Churches are suppressing the truth that Jesus and Mary Magdalene sired a dynasty of Merovingian kings; someone else who thinks Aids was cooked up in a CIA laboratory; someone else again who thinks MI5 killed Diana, Princess of Wales.

There is nothing new in fad diets, quack remedies, eccentric academic movements or most of the other phenomena he counterknoeledge. To order, please call Telegraph Books on or go to books. Perhaps you know one person who believes all three. Read reviews that mention alternative medicine catholic herald conspiracy theories much better damian thompson catholic church read this book evidence autism homeopathy creation knowledge modern truth example thinking beliefs creationism medical pseudoscience.

It is concise, readable, straightforward and packed with logic.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Conspiracy theories are possibly the easiest target of all.

Jul 07, Andrew rated it it was ok Recommends it for: