Science denial seems to be rampant at the moment. The climate change denial promoted by “climategate” is just an extreme current example. We still face other forms of science denial with respect to evolutionary science, alternative medicines, spiritualism, etc. Even bloody alternative fertilisers, for god’s sake!
So this TED talk by Michael Spector is timely. He has new book out, Denialism: How Irrational Thinking Hinders Scientific Progress, Harms the Planet, and Threatens Our Lives. I have yet to read it but it also sounds timely from the reviews.
I am currently reading another book relevant to this area. It’s Nonsense on Stilts: How to Tell Science from Bunk by Massimo Pigliucci. Mine is a review copy (the book is published next month) but so far I can highly recommend it. It’s very well written, quite exciting to read and covers many modern examples of anti-science nonsense. Massimo discusses science denialism and its possible causes. Anti-intellectualism seems to be one of the causes in the US.
This whole subject is important. And as Spector says: “Denialism is a virus and viruses are contagious.”
See also: Looking for the sources of the ’denial’