She fled India after she was raped and forced into an arranged marriage.… Read the rest
All entries by this author
‘She is a serious, independent and provocative thinker,’ says chair of Demos trustees.… Read the rest
The Independent asks Hobsbawm and others.… Read the rest
…annoying cultural traditions have a distinct knack of clinging on through generations. It would be no exaggeration to say that thousands of young British Asian women are forced into marriage every year…I have seen well educated and well adjusted friends slowly become nervous wrecks as their parents pile on the pressure…last week the Home Office decided a specific law to ban forced marriages was not needed. To put it mildly, the decision was not only a travesty but an unbelievably stupid fudge…Yet once again Labour has fallen victim to an army of Asian apologetics who prefer this muddle and like to pretend that the practice is very rare. Complete rubbish.
For example, Pragna Patel from
‘We need a few high-profile cases of Asian parents being put in prison to make [forced marriage] a social stigma.’… Read the rest
False convictions are a problem – but so are false acquittals.… Read the rest
Very carefully.… Read the rest
‘Even multiculturalism’s defenders often have little clue of what it really is, or does.’… Read the rest
Scares about mercury fillings get headlines; follow-up research suggesting they are safe is ignored. … Read the rest
Newspaper scare stories rely on unpublished research, so informed debate is impossible.… Read the rest
‘Faith’ schools demand exemption from equality laws in order to keep teaching that homosexuality is a sin. … Read the rest
Might be a good idea to educate some homegrown scientists.… Read the rest
Scott has a very apropos column this week. Well, apropos from my point of view anyway – and in a very real sense, is not my point of view the only one that matters? Of course it is. And from that point of view Scott’s column reads like a sly follow-up to his column last week, the one in which he interviewed some bore who co-wrote a book about truth. Some of the commenters on that column, as you may or may not remember, rolled up their sleeves and got to work casting doubt on the whole idea of truth by breaking out the capital letters and the incredulous modifiers (certain, absolute) and the fleering quotation marks (“truth,” … Read the rest
Not enough Montaigne, no GH Mead, no Habermas; but still a useful book.… Read the rest
‘This isn’t Brigham Young Seminary,’ says BYU alumnus.… Read the rest
Accuracy, reliability, accountability matter.… Read the rest
Focus too much on organisation and attentiveness, not enough on explosions.… Read the rest
Good idea but silly reasons.… Read the rest
Brigham Young University is in the news at the moment because its philosophy department decided not to renew the contract of an adjunct instructor after he wrote a newspaper editorial in favour of same-sex marriage. The instructor received a letter from the chair of the philosophy department informing him of the decision shortly after his editorial ran in the Salt Lake Tribune. Inside Higher Ed reported, ‘Carri Jenkins, a BYU spokeswoman, said the choice not to rehire Nielsen came from the department, which has the authority to make personnel decisions on part-time faculty. “The department made the decision because of the opinion piece that had been written, and based on the fact that Mr. Nielsen publicly contradicted and opposed … Read the rest
I’m not the only one who thinks so, either. Frederick Crews’s article says much the same thing, only better.
Although the follies discussed in my chapters are mild when judged against the total historical record of homicidal zeal in the service of misapprehensions, they display most of the features that characterize religious fanaticism, such as undue deference to authority, hostility toward dissenters, and, most basically, an assumption that intuitively held certitude is somehow more precious and profound than the hard-won gains of trial and error.
This is, it seems to me, the lurking danger behind the innocuous-seeming idea that there are ways of getting at the truth about the world that are radically different from ‘the scientific method.’ If … Read the rest