Alterscience Publication date : January 17, 2013
Alexandre Moatti is a senior mining engineer.
‘How and why do scientifically trained people when they reach a certain age sometimes adopt views that are violently opposed to the science of their time? Why do some scientists mobilise their reasoning skills to construct apparently scientific arguments in defence of an ideology with no relation to science? How can we explain the persistence of such behaviours among scientists, at least since the birth of modern science more than three hundred years ago? Now that such positions circulate and proliferate rapidly on the Internet, what impact do they have on relations between science and society?
‘The present approach, which we call alterscience, includes various theoretical constructions that radically challenge important scientific results or that use scientific arguments for ideological, religious or personal ends,’ writes Alexandre Moatti.
• The main characteristics of ‘alterscience’ are ambivalence, theoretical pseudo-rationality, virulent discussions and the instrumentalisation of science to further ideological or religious ends.
• This much-needed book warns against a type of obscurantism that is spreading alarmingly on the Internet.