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« You Are BANNED! or The Spectors of Identity Politics | Main | I sey no good that thou trollis dost within thes wyd wonys! or, May happe I doe, may happe I doe »

Saturday, 14 May 2005

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Stephen

The reason is that each discipline has its own variety of bullshit. What you've stumbled across is an example of sociological bullshit. Sociological bullshit consists of "reviews of existing scholarship" and bogus pseudo-scientific survey studies that prove what everyone else already knew. Pure c.v. filler. Biological and medical bullshit consists of lots and lots of unimaginative experiments with rats that repeat other researchers' experiments with rats. ("Yep, Prof. X and his team were right - 900 volts does fry the little guys). Literary bullshit, . . . well, you already know all about literary bullshit. Whatever horrible things you can say about literary bullshit, at least it doesn't kill little rats. I like rats. Mind you, literary bullshit is particularly effective at killing braincells, which is arguably just as bad. However, unless you're a graduate student taking a seminar with a tenured bullshit artist, you have a choice about whether or not to have your braincells killed by literary studies (i.e., step away from the Homi Bhabha). Whereas those little rats are pretty much fucked.

Stephen

Yes, but Stephen, I think you've missed an important distinction. Bullshit consists of false claims that mislead both the reader and the author himself. A philosopher named Harry Frankfurt has written a treatise on the subject, which I'm surprised you haven't read. Anyhow, what Acephalous is describing isn't bullshit, in contrast, say, to Homi Bhabha. We need a new word for Hodgson's efforts, and for the efforts of your rat-killing medical researchers. I would suggest "Bullbarf." I.e., it's essentially regurgitory rather than obfuscatory.

Stephen

You two guys need to get back to your dissertation, or else it's going to turn into a particularly noxious combination of Bullshit and Bullbarf.

Stephen

How can I get any work done when you guys keep running away with my identity?

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