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Flim-Flam!: The Truth About Unicorns, Parapsychology and Other Delusions (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 1. Januar 1982


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Produktinformation

  • Taschenbuch: 342 Seiten
  • Verlag: Prometheus Books; Auflage: 0002 (1. Januar 1982)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0879751983
  • ISBN-13: 978-0879751982
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 15,3 x 2,6 x 22,9 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4.3 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (30 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 128.306 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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Produktbeschreibungen

Synopsis

In this book, Randi explores and exposes what he believes to be the outrageous deception that has been promoted widely in the media. Unafraid to call researchers to account for their failures and impostures, Randi tells us that we have been badly served by scientists who have failed to follow the procedures required by their training and traditions. Here, he shows us how what he views as sloppy research has been followed by rationalisations of evident failures, and we see these errors and misrepresentations clearly pointed out. Mr. Randi provides us with a compelling and convincing document that will certainly startle and enlighten all who read it.

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9 von 9 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Ein Kunde am 31. Dezember 1996
Format: Taschenbuch
I saw a TV show about James Randi recently. In one scene, he visited a college classroom, posing as an expert astrologer. He had prepared, he told the class, detailed individual horoscopes based on each student's birthdate and birthplace. The students read these horoscopes, then rated their accuracy on a scale of 1-5. One student gave his horoscope a 4. Every other horoscope got a 5. The students were amazed: astrology worked! Randi then had them look at each other's horoscopes. Cries of outrage filled the room. All of the horoscopes were exactly the same. They had nothing whatsoever to do with birthdates, or birthplaces, or any particular student.
This book is full of such examples. Randi uses them, and scientific data, and consistently careful analysis of facts, to show that such ideas as astrology, biorhythms, transcendental meditation, UFOs, the Bermuda Triangle, ESP, and psychic surgery are, quite simply, nonsense. In 1964, he offered $10,000 to anyone who could demonstrate a paranormal power under satisfactory observational conditions. As of the 1982 publication date, over 650 people had tried for the reward, none successfully. Some of the attempts are described in this book. Funny how psychics who have "demonstrated" the ability to bend metal rods by will power can't do it anymore when they are no longer allowed to wander out of the room with the rods during the experiment!
A theme throughout the book is that people who want to believe something will accept the most absurd rationalizations in order to continue to believe it, in spite of overwhelming contradictory evidence. At the beginning of his chapter on psychic surgery, Randi quotes William Cowper: "To follow foolish precedents, and wink / With both our eyes, is easier than to think.
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4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Vince Q. Tran am 20. Juli 2000
Format: Taschenbuch
Randi is not only a professional conjurer, but also serves as an individual dedicated to exposing the illegitimacy of parapsychology, and other forms of pseudoscientific/supernatural beliefs held by people. Confidence in his affirmation that any form(s) of parapsychology, and many other unexplainable phenomena that are widely believed to be true are in fact not, is backed up by his offer of now $1 million. This book is a collection of Randi's encounters of that very group of individuals that claim to posses the supernatural abilities in question. The basic thesis of this book is that these supernatural phenomenas do not exist and their occurrences are quite explainable. The responsibility then, is rests on both the scientific community and ourselves, to not fall victim to their ability to deceive.
Randi does well in keeping the content light and relatively easy to read. His light sarcasm well reflects his lack of respect for false claims of the supernatural and other pseudoscientific beliefs. While the book consists mostly of accounts of objective observation, there are modest stints of ideas and opinions of the author, which keeps the book accessible to readers not looking to have to bore through only scientific account and analysis. The loose usage of the word(s) damn/damning to present ideas of the corruption of scientific ideals was amusing. Randi also does well in keeping his book for the most part, free of religion and its influence in science; rather, he chooses to focus on scientific explanation of respective phenomena.
A problem with the book was that Randi did not delve very deeply into the reasons behind the phenomena of those purporting evidence of the supernatural.
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4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Mark Latta am 30. Juni 2000
Format: Taschenbuch
Randi's "Flim Flam!" is a definite addition to any skeptic's arsenal. It shows specific instances where "believers," when given a chance to prove their powers in a controlled environment, consistently fail to substantiate their claims. In this sense, it is an good illustration of how paranormal claims fail.
Also of particular interest is the chapter on the "fairies" that were photographed in England around the turn of the century. That chapter alone should be photocopied and handed out at Blockbuster whenever the 1997 film "Fairy Tale: A True Story" is rented. Then, after watching that film, parents could talk critically about the incident.
Unfortunately, the impression this book gave me was that Randi thinks that "believers" are stupid for believing what they do. Irrational? Possibly. Non-scientific? Maybe. But stupid? No. Randi's sarcastic tone is a real turn off to those would much rather have the facts and a clear, unbiased analysis of the events.
In summary, a good skeptical resource, but if you don't mind the author being a bit full of himself. For a more pleasant, skeptical look at paranormal claims, see the Skeptical Inquirer collection, "The Hundredth Monkey: and Other Paradigms of the Paranormal" by Kendrick Frazier.
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2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Jyoti Shankar am 3. Juni 1998
Format: Taschenbuch
Flim Flam, as the subtitle says, is about other delusions, and how James Randi investigates and exposes the tricks, frauds and fakery in the field of Psychic "Research". This field is really the wrestling arena for the con-artists who live by hype - either by fooling scientists, or in collusion with the pseudoscientists who live by money conned from good Samaritans, us - the tax payers and consumers and scientists of the normal. The Bermuda Triangle, Biorhythm, photos of fairies, ghosts and kirlia, levitation, pyramid power, Mayan visitors from outer space, tele-what-nots, TM and Z-rays are some of the "other delusions" exposed in this book. We know that these are bunk. But how do we convince our friends that they are? Give them this book. Show them how any of those so called psychic phenomena cannot stand the test of any skeptic with scientific approach which does not preclude the possibility of fraud or delusion or both. James Randi is the hit man of the Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal (CSICOP) and in this book you get an idea of how hard it is pull those punches.
Besides hundreds of names of people, places and institutions associated with these frauds, details from correspondence, this book has photos and diagrams of the hoax-rooms where the paranormal fakers did hoodwink and unnerve the rationality of the respectable scientists. The charts that were designed to fool the custodians of money - to be wasted through the propagation of pseudoscience of para-psychology and pollute the minds of the future generations of Americans with pure non-sense, the money that has been lost by genuine scientific and medical research - such charts have also been included in this book.
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