A real paper or a Sokal-esque hoax? You be the judge

Why Evolution Is True

The fact is that certain forms of postmodern discourse are so outré that you can’t tell whether they’re serious or jokes. (Indeed, some postmodernist claim that their serious pieces can be construed as jocular!) The most famous example of this conflation between the scholarly and the absurd is, of course, Alan Sokal’s hoax article on physics and postmodernism for the journal Social Text, “Transgressing the Boundaries: Towards a Transformative Hermeneutics of Quantum Gravity“. (I’m proud to say that the first letter in the New York Times about that piece was my own praise for Sokal. I was then roundly attacked on the phone by an old friend who had, without my knowledge, gone over to the Dark Side and become a postmodernist.

So here’s an article that just appeared in the journal Progress in Human Geography (pdf here, h/t to reader David.) Click on the screenshot to go to…

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2 responses to “A real paper or a Sokal-esque hoax? You be the judge

  1. …i read more. We might find that in a very capitalistic fashion, that labor value is determined not by any ‘real’ or ‘actual’ substance, but rather merely by the material that is produced as its space is likewise argued to its value, and as cohorts of support develop intellectual ‘religious’ sectors that further supply value for the products.

    The reason why we might think that thisvtype of argument is ridiculous is because we lived in a time when products and discourse where held together somehow. Now there is no longer such a necessary tie.

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  2. Im not even going to continue reading past the excerpts. Holy crap. It just goes to show how we dont learn from past situations sometimes. The thing is, if we do take reality as a discursive construction then we can consider how glaciers might be formed by femminism or gender .

    But. Hey you ever taken a look at the Post Modern Generator?

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