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Beyond Velikovsky

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Beyond Velikovsky, book cover

Beyond Velikovsky: The History of a Public Controversy (1984) is a book by Henry Bauer:

"My ambition in this book is not to settle the Velikovsky controversy but to provide food for thought and a basis for understanding this and similar arguments. [..]
"In Part I, I attempt to tell, without bias and in chronological sequence, the story of the controversy. Part II details my personal analysis of the affair and touches on wider issues that are relevant--how to distinguish cranks from scientists, for example. I attempt to make the difficult point that one can reach personal conviction without losing sight of the fact that personal convictions are not necessarily true. In Part III, I review the affair in the light of my conclusions, seeking to show that the main themes of this controversy will be found in many other public arguments, especially that gross misunderstandings about "science" abound. And I attempt a valid but nontechnical description of what science really is.
"I began this work simply because I found the Velikovsky affair a fascinating controversy about which I wanted to become clear. It is my hope now that my readers will find the book not only an interesting account of that controversy but also a means of stimulating recognition of the many inaccuracies, half-truths, unsupported assertions, and misleading statements to which we all are constantly exposed."[1]

Contents

Book contents

  • Preface ix
  • Part I — The Story of the Velikovsky Affair
1. Early Publicity 3
2. Worlds in Collision 1 1
3. The First Battle 27
4. The Second Engagement 41
5. The End of the Beginning 64
  • Part II — An Analysis of the Velikovsky Affair
6. Is Velikovsky Right or Wrong? 85
7. Velikovsky’s Physical Science 98
8. Pseudo-Scientists, Cranks, Crackpots 135
9. A Nontechnical Case against Velikovsky 154
10. Intermezzo 175
  • Part III — Beyond the Velikovsky Affair
11. Motives for Believing 185
12. Accomplices to Belief 194
13. Blundering Critics 209
14. Means of Persuasion 227
15. Some Realities about Science 251
16. Analogous Cases 309
  • Epilogue 319
  • References 323
  • Index 347

Reviews

Beyond Velikovsky has been reviewed in the following publications:

  • Aeon II:6 (1991), "Beyond Bauer", Ev Cochrane
  • American Rationalist, 30 (#3, September-October 1985) 53-54, Gordon Stein
  • American Studies, XXVII (August 1986) 143, Stephen G. Brush
  • Booklist, 1 December 1984, 466
  • Choice, June 1985, 1518, H. Eichhorn
  • Chronicles, March 1986, 10-12
  • CSICOP (www.csicop.org/bib/38)
  • The Explorer, 2 (#1, January 1985), H. E. Puthoff
  • Fate, 38 (June 1985) 97-102, Jerome Clark, Velikovsky in retrospect [see also 'Worlds in Collision', 39 (December 1986) 102]
  • The Gate, October 1986, 6-7, George W. Early
  • "Pseudosciences", Isis, 76 (#3, 1985) 428-429, Robert W. Smith
  • "Velikovsky and After", Journal of the History of Astronomy, XVIII (1987) 72-74, Donald W. Goldsmith
  • Key Reporter, Vol. 52 #1, Autumn 1986, 4, Russell B. Stevens
  • "On trans-scientific turf", Nature, 315 (25 April 1985) 692-693, Owen Gingerich
  • New Technical Books (N.Y. Public Library), 71 (#7, July 1986) 570, J.S.L.
  • The Observatory, Vol. III #1101, April 1991, page 88, P. J. Andrews
  • Philadelphia Inquirer, 11 August 1985, 6, Carl Maugeri, The passionate dispute over a scientific heretic
  • Physics Education, August 1986, Richard Palmer, History, philosophy and physicists
  • Princeton Packet (TIME OFF), 12 November 1986, 36, Richard D. Smith, Velikovsky and Loch Ness: what is science?
  • Quarterly Journal of Speech, 72 (#2, May 1986) 226-229, Trevor Melia
  • Science, 228 (14 June 1985) 1304-1305, John W. Patterson, Lessons of a controversy
  • Science Frontiers, 41 (September-October 1985), William Corliss
  • SciTech Book News, 9 (#3, March 1985) 6
  • Skeptical Inquirer, 9 (Summer 1985) 319-322, Martin Gardner, Welcome to the debunking club (comment by C. Leroy Ellenberger, 10, Summer 1986, 380-81; also p.375, ‘Some Recent Books’)
  • Social Psychology of Science Newsletter, March 1985, 7
  • Zetetic Scholar 12/13 (August 1987) 179

Notes

  1. Henry H. Bauer, Beyond Velikovsky: The History of a Public Controversy, 1984, University of Illinois Press, ISBN 978-0-252-06845-4

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