Social Sciences as Sorcery

Social Sciences as Sorcery

Social Sciences as Sorcery

Social Sciences as Sorcery

Excerpt

To forestall any possible misunderstanding, I must state emphatically at the outset that I neither accuse nor even suspect anyone mentioned by name in this book of deliberately concocting a stunt, disseminating falsehoods knowingly, or of being prompted by a desire for dishonest gain or an advancement obtained through corruption. A renowned author would have to have a most extraordinary character (indeed, he would have to be in a way superhuman) to be able to write prolifically in the full knowledge that his works are worthless and that he is a charlatan whose fame is entirely undeserved and based solely on the stupidity and gullibility of his admirers. Even if he had some doubts about the correctness of his approach at some stage of his career, success and adulation would soon persuade him of his own genius and the epoch-making value of his concoctions. When, in consequence of acquiring a controlling position in the distribution of funds, appointments and promotions, he becomes surrounded by sycophants courting his favours, he is most unlikely to see through their motivation; and, like wealthy and powerful people in other walks of life, will tend to take flattery at its face value, accepting it as a sincere appreciation (and therefore confirmation).

Rather than among noted writers, cynical charlatans can be found among manipulators who write little or nothing, and whose egos are consequently not invested in any particular notion or approach, and who do not care, therefore, which gimmick they use to milk fund-dispensing bodies. Although I know one or two individuals of this kind, none of them is mentioned by name -- which would not only entail unprovable imputations of motive, but also be beside the point, as my task here is to combat wrong ideas . . . not to compile a list of shady academics. Even individuals of this type, moreover, find . . .

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