By Brian D. Earp (@briandavidearp) * Please note: this piece was originally published in Quillette Magazine. Four members of the Dawoodi Bohra sect of Islam living in Detroit, Michigan have recently been indicted on charges of female genital mutilation (FGM). This is the first time the US government has prosecuted an “FGM” case since a federal law was passed in […]
Can We Trust Research in Science and Medicine?
By Brian D. Earp (@briandavidearp) Readers of the JME Blog might be interested in this series of short videos in which I discuss some of the major ongoing problems with research ethics and publication integrity in science and medicine. How much of the published literature is trustworthy? Why is peer review such a poor quality control mechanism? How can we judge […]
In Praise of Ambivalence: “Young” Feminism, Gender Identity, and Free Speech
By Brian D. Earp (@briandavidearp) * Note: this article was first published online at Quillette magazine. Introduction Alice Dreger, the historian of science, sex researcher, activist, and author of a much-discussed book of last year, has recently called attention to the loss of ambivalence as an acceptable attitude in contemporary politics and beyond. “Once upon a time,” she writes, “we […]
Circumcision and Sexual Function: Bad Science Reporting Misleads Parents
by Brian D. Earp / (@briandavidearp) Introduction Another day, another round of uncritical media coverage of an empirical study about circumcision and sexual function. That’s including from the New York Times, whose Nicholas Bakalar has more or less recycled the content of a university press release without incorporating any skeptical analysis from other scientists. That’s par for […]
The Unbearable Asymmetry of Bullshit
By Brian D. Earp (@briandavidearp) * Note: this article was first published online at Quillette magazine. The official version is forthcoming in the HealthWatch Newsletter; see http://www.healthwatch-uk.org/. Introduction Science and medicine have done a lot for the world. Diseases have been eradicated, rockets have been sent to the moon, and convincing, causal explanations have been given for a whole range […]
1 in 4 Women: How the Latest Sexual Assault Statistics Were Turned into Click Bait by the New York Times
by Brian D. Earp / (@briandavidearp) * Note: this article was originally published at the Huffington Post. Introduction As someone who has worked on college campuses to educate men and women about sexual assault and consent, I have seen the barriers to raising awareness and changing attitudes. Chief among them, in my experience, is a sense of skepticism–especially […]
Psychology Is not in Crisis? Depends on What You Mean by “Crisis”
By Brian D. Earp @briandavidearp *Note that this article was originally published at the Huffington Post. Introduction In the New York Times yesterday, psychologist Lisa Feldman Barrett argues that “Psychology Is Not in Crisis.” She is responding to the results of a large-scale initiative called the Reproducibility Project, published in Science magazine, which appeared to […]
Does Religion Deserve a Place in Secular Medicine?
By Brian D. Earp The latest issue of the Journal of Medical Ethics is out, and in it, Professor Nigel Biggar—an Oxford theologian—argues that “religion” should have a place in secular medicine (click here for a link to the article). Some people will feel a shiver go down their spines—and not only the non-religious. After […]