Higher Superstition

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Higher Superstition: The Academic Left and Its Quarrels with Science
Higher Superstition.jpg
AuthorsPaul R. Gross, Norman Levitt
CountryUnited States
SubjectPhilosophy of science
PublisherJohns Hopkins University Press
Publication date
Media typePrint

Higher Superstition: The Academic Left and Its Quarrels with Science is a 1994 book by biologist Paul R. Gross and mathematician Norman Levitt.


Levitt states he is a leftist trying to save the "academic left" from itself by exposing misuses and abuses of science to advance political goals.

Reception and influence[edit]

The book inspired the 1996 Sokal hoax, in which Alan Sokal published a bogus paper in a postmodernist journal that did not peer-review submissions.[1] Sokal stated in an interview that while he was initially skeptical about Higher Superstition, he concluded after reading the works Gross and Levitt criticized that they were describing them fairly in "about 80 percent of the cases".[2]

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ Dawkins, Richard (2007-04-01). "Postmodernism Disrobed". Archived from the original on 2011-01-20. Retrieved 2010-09-24.
  2. ^ Ruark, Jennifer (1 January 2017). "Bait and Switch: How the physicist Alan Sokal hoodwinked a group of humanists and why, 20 years later, it still matters". The Chronicle of Higher Education. Retrieved 7 January 2017.

Related texts[edit]

  • Paul R. Gross and Norman Levitt, Higher Superstition: The Academic Left and Its Quarrels With Science (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1994). ISBN 0-8018-5707-4
  • The Editors of Lingua Franca eds., et al., The Sokal Hoax: The Sham That Shook the Academy (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2000). ISBN 0-8032-7995-7
  • Noretta Koertge, ed., A House Built on Sand: Exposing Postmodernist Myths About Science (New York: Oxford University Press, 1998). ISBN 0-19-511726-3
  • Paul R. Gross, Norman Levitt, and Martin W. Lewis, The Flight from Science and Reason (New York: New York Academy of Sciences, 1997). ISBN 0-8018-5676-0
  • James Robert Brown Who Rules in Science: An Opinionated Guide to the Wars (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 2001). ISBN 0-674-00652-6
  • Ian Hacking, The Social Construction of What (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1999). ISBN 0-674-00412-4
  • Norton Wise, "The Enemy Without. The Enemy Within: A Review of Gross and Levitt, Higher Superstition" Isis 87 (1996).

External links[edit]