Tuesday, January 3, 2012

A Long History of Something or Other (Interlude 2): More Links

All evidence to the contrary notwithstanding, I still intend to finish this series on the Pinker book, and then get back to the West Wing reviews. There's been a long series of distractions, the latest of which is damage to the laptop on which my notes are stored, but at some point the stars will align and part five (or whatever number we're up to) will appear. Until then, a few more links.

Quodlibeta: I linked to a specific Pinker-related post on this blog before, but there have been several others since, subjecting his historical claims to a rigorous analysis I lack the resources and inclination to undertake. Spoiler: it turns out he's out of his depth. Shocking. Note particularly the post on medieval murder rates, which undermines the one piece of Pinker's factual argument I had been willing to accept.

"The Precious Steven Pinker": an entertaining review that's also more concise than anything I've written.

"Fandi Fictor Optimus Prime": IOZ weighs in.