Nonsense on Stilts: Science, Pseudoscience & the Need for Critical Thinking

Ahyam Jabr

There is good science and bad science. There is quasi-science and pseudo-science. It's a complex landscape out there, where people can get lost, swayed by purveyors of snake oil, big pharmaceutical companies, and a host of other unsavory characters. And yet, we cannot be informed citizens of a 21st century democracy and not know how to think about this issue. It matters to you and your loved ones whether you accept current medical knowledge about vaccines or think that they are a Big Pharma conspiracy. It matters to the whole planet whether you think the climate is tilting out of control because of greedy human activities or instead suspect that it's all about scientists wanting more money for their petty projects.

In this Olio, Prof. Massimo Pigliucci, a scientist and philosopher from the City College of New York, will explore with you the good science <> bad science <> quasi-science <> pseudo-science landscape. We will talk about fundamental physics and astrology, evolutionary psychology and parapsychology, trying to make sense out of nonsense. We will also get acquainted with a handy guide on how to make up your mind about whether to trust an alleged expert or not.




Location: Strand Bookstore

828 Broadway, New York, NY 10003

The Rare Book Room at Strand Bookstore boasts an elegant venue for our Friday night residency.




Interdisciplinary Learning with the Best Professors


Think Olio is not about learning a new skill or adding credentials to your resume. It is about getting together with other people and expanding our worldview. It exists as a conduit for fruitful discussions, a dissent from the regurgitation of facts, and an embrace of new perspectives.


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Other upcoming Olios


Aug 20

Dementia Americana: The Persistence of Forgetting

Taught by Ward Regan
7:30 p.m. at Nowadays

Sign Up - $15

Aug 21

Prospect Park Philosophy | Art vs. Reality

Taught by Geoff Klock
7:15 p.m. at Prospect Park (Grand Army Entrance)

Sign Up - $15

Aug 21

Philosophy Club | "God is Dead"

Taught by Jeanne Proust
8 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $15

Aug 22

Margaret Fuller, Beethoven, and Revolution in the Minds of Women

Taught by Christina Katopodis
7 p.m. at Strand Bookstore

Sign Up - $20

Aug 24

OlioHouse Finale | The Problem with the End of the World

Taught by Michael Prettyman
noon at OlioHouse | Wassaic, NY

Sign Up - $150

Aug 28

Eastern Philosophy and Relationships: The Interplay of Yin & Yang

Taught by Darryl Aiken-Afam
7 p.m. at The Assemblage | NoMad

Sign Up - $15

Sep 17

Mediated Intimacy: The Dating App Landscape

Taught by Pani Farvad
7 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $15

Sep 19

* Sold Out * OlioTrip | Cienfuegos, Cuba

Taught by Teresita Levy
10 a.m. at Cienfuegos, Cuba

Sign Up - $


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