6 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Well-reasoned and timely,
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Fashionable Nonsense: Postmodern Intellectuals' Abuse of Science (Taschenbuch)
Alan Sokal endeared himself to rationalists everwhere when in 1996 he published an article entitled "Transgressing the Boundaries" in the journal Social Text, a leading American publication of work in the social sciences that falls under a catch-all term of "postmodernist" thought. Unfortunately for the editors of this journal, however, Sokal was anything but a serious postmodernist scholar; his article was a hoax in which he intentionally misrepresented concepts from science and mathematics to make entirely specious arguments relating to the social sciences. The point was more than clear: that the intellectuals producing similar garbage for publication, when using science or mathematics as support for their superficially erudite but fundamentally meaningless discussions, simply do not know what they are talking about.
"Fashionable Nonsense," which includes both "Transgressing the Boundaries" and its follow-up article as appendices, is an extension of this message, and the devastating critiques of the use of science and mathematics in the "work" of "postmodernist" theorists is one of the book's major strengths. One cannot come away from this book and fail to wonder how such intellectually fraudulent work could have gained such currency in the social sciences; Sokal and Bricmont's discussion of just this issue is also well reasoned. Another strength of the book is found in the additional critiques brought to bear on the currently popular ideas of Thomas Kuhn, relating to the progress of science, and the work of Karl Popper, relating to "falsifiability" as a fundamental property of scientific theories.
If there are weaknesses in the text, they are mostly of omission. In some cases the authors choose to let the postmodernists' words speak for themselves with relatively little comment other than a well-worded version of name-calling, for example in the section on Deleuze and Guattari. Still, even here the basic message--that if a passage seems impenetrable, it is probably so for a reason, namely the obfuscation of intellectually vacant discourse--is unavoidable.
It is distinctly refreshing to read a critique such as this without the politically right-wing baggage that so often accompanies it (i.e. Dinesh D'Souza et. al.) Sokal and Bricmont are admitted leftists, and their critique is intended to strengthen the political left in academia by encouraging a return to rational thought. Thus, while the postmodernist screeds they critique are arguably of little real importance outside of academia, "Fashionable Nonsense" is of genuine importance. Even if you have never encountered the work dealt with here, this book is worth reading.
Rezensentin / Rezensent