Linkage: Sokal Hoax 2.0

id-rather-like-you-to-know-youve-been-trolled.jpgEvery philosophy student and every theology student should know about the original Sokal hoax. Here’s the best reflection on its important lessons. (Dr. Boghossian later expanded the discussion in this book.)

Now a philosopher has pulled a similar hoax; this time it’s a naturalistic atheist vs. the Association for Reformational Philosophy. The story is at Jerry Coyne’s blog, Why Evolution is True. (Never mind that this particular post provides no such reason. :-) ) Coyne notes,

This shows once again the appeal of religious gibberish to the educated believer

True – for some. But this love of pseudo-profound nonsense isn’t confined to believers in God, or even to religious people in general. It’s a human failing which I’ve discussed before. (pp. 23-4)

FYI – no decent organization of analytic philosophers would have accepted that abstract, as full of gibberish as it is. My colleagues and I referee submissions to a lecture series, and if we’d received something like that, it would have caused more than a little amusement.

But if gibberish is your thing, here’s a website I recommend for you.

In all seriousness, the harm of this stuff is that it gives ordinary people reason to think that all scholars are bs-ing. The problem with this is: most are not!

About Dale

Dale Tuggy is a Professor of Philosophy at SUNY Fredonia, where he teaches courses in analytic theology, philosophy of religion, religious studies, and the history of philosophy.

One Response to Linkage: Sokal Hoax 2.0

  1. villanovanus says:

    In all seriousness, the harm of this stuff is that it gives ordinary people reason to think that all scholars are bs-ing [Is Philosophy Bullshit?, November 25, 2009, @ maverickphilosopher.typepad.com]. The problem with this is: most are not!

    Is this post (steeped with links) some sort of self-apology? ;)

    MdS

    BTW (and only for those who can get it), in spite the superficial vulgate, the fiercest enemies of Galileo Galilei were not only the theologians, but, at least as much, the “peripatetic” philosophers …

    BBTW, one of the most interesting papers by Maarten Boudry is his How not to attack Intelligent Design Creationism: Philosophical misconceptions about Methodological Naturalism (@ sites.google.com/site/maartenboudry). I believe he is wrong: what he calls “Intrinsic Methodological Naturalism” (IMN) is NOT alternative to “Pragmatic Methodological Naturalism” (PMN)

Leave a Reply

Please use your real name instead of you company name or keyword spam.