Would you like my honest opinion or would you prefer the alternative?


Athena has put up a post on Pseudo-science and Archaeology which I like. It has two par­tic­u­lar good points. Firstly she defines what she means by pseudo-science and then she explains why it mat­ters. The quibble I would have is one which could be applied with far more force to me. Is Pseudo-science the right word? I think it is in Athena’s case, because she defines what she means. However Phil Plait at Bad Astronomy has argued that the term pseudo-science is mis­lead­ing because it gives the impres­sion that pseudo-science is almost sci­ence. There’s noth­ing sci­entific about it. It’s anti­science and that’s the term he’s using.

He points out that the label we give to a pos­i­tion defines its oppon­ents too. So if you plant a car-bomb out­side an abor­tion clinic you’re “pro-life”, thus imply­ing the guy or guyess you’re try­ing kill is anti–life. Does this have reper­cus­sions for his­tory or archae­ology?
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