How to reach the South Pole before your rivals do

Image via Wikipedia It's 100 years since the British explorer Captain Scott reached the South Pole only to realise his rival Roald Amundsen had just beaten him to it. On the return journey he and his party died, but not before writing about it in journals, thus creating an enduring myth of 'heroic failure'. In his … Continue reading How to reach the South Pole before your rivals do

Science communication and conservative values

Roger Scruton's recent article in Prospect Magazine provides an interesting illustration of what Dan Kahn and Chris Mooney have been discussing on their respective blogs. (Kahn blogs regularly now at the Cultural Cognition Project and Mooney writes at the Desmog Blog.) The topic of their discussion: Is it possible to take the polemics out of … Continue reading Science communication and conservative values

Equality and Hierarchy in Denmark

Hedeby, probable site of the first school in Denmark Further reflections on the concept of horizontal and vertical teaching methods. A recent edition of the journal Social Analysis (55.2, 2011) is entirely devoted to the contrast between hierarchical and egalitarian pressures on Danish Society. The introduction begins with a discussion of the work of the … Continue reading Equality and Hierarchy in Denmark

Explaining Political Judgement

Fourcultures has previously reviewed the work of Perri 6 , Professor of social policy at Nottingham Trent University.  The Institutional Dynamics of Culture (which he edited with Gerald Mars) remains the most important compendium of sources on Mary Douglas's cultural theory. His latest book is Explaining Political Judgement, which looks to be a very thorough … Continue reading Explaining Political Judgement

It matters who presents the message

Who would you trust to tell you what the risks are? Research from the Cultural Cognition project suggests the cultural identity of the presenter matters significantly to the public reception of a particular message about risk. In other words, we need our experts to be our experts, not the other side’s experts. It follows from … Continue reading It matters who presents the message