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Denying to the Grave


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Table of Contents

Introduction Chapter One: Risk Perception Chapter Two: Avoidance of Complexity Chapter Three: Causality and Filling the Ignorance Gap Chapter Four: Confirmation Bias Chapter Five: Charismatic Leaders Chapter Six: Conspiracy Theories Conclusion

About the Author

Sara Gorman, PhD, MPH, is a public health specialist at a large multinational healthcare company, where she works on global mental health, increasing the quality of evidence in the global health field, and alternative funding models for global health. She has written extensively about global health, HIV/AIDS policy, and women's health, among other topics, for a variety of health and medical journals, including PLoS Medicine, the International Journal of Women's Health, and AIDS Care. She has worked in the policy division at the HIV Law Project and as a researcher at the Epidemiology Department at Harvard School of Public Health. She has also analyzed mental health policy under the ACA for the Vera Institute of Justice and researched the effectiveness of semi-mobile HIV clinics in rural Kenya for HealthRight International. Jack M. Gorman, MD, is CEO and Chief Scientific Officer of Franklin Behavioral Health Consultants. Dr. Gorman was on the faculty of Columbia University's Department of Psychiatry for 25 years, eventually serving as Lieber Professor of Psychiatry. He then became the Esther and Joseph Klingenstein Professor and Chair of Psychiatry and Professor of Neuroscience at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine.


"In this superb book, Sara E. Gorman (project manager, Johnson & Johnson Global Public Health) and psychiatrist Jack M. Gorman (CEO & chief scientific officer, Franklin Behavioral Health; The Essential Guide to Psychiatric Drugs) collaborate to explain why many people deny scientifically established facts, even in the face of compelling evidence...Perfect for fans of the subject and Daniel Kahneman's Thinking, Fast and Slow."--Library Journal, Starred Review "Perhaps a new book, Denying to the Grave by public health specialists (a father and daughter team) Sara Gorman and Jack Gorman, can help us understand why facts and statistics fall on deaf ears time and time again...The book is thoughtful, exploring the psychology, neurobiology and evolutionary roots that underpin some of our decision-making, which can make adaptive behaviour maladaptive."--New Scientist "In [Denying to the Grave], the Gormans explain not just how people fall for the false claims of politicians, but also how intelligent people wind up in cults or why a nation wracked by gun violence continues to reject gun-control measure... [The Gormans are] equal opportunity debunkers, taking on GMO fear-mongering and anti-vaxers along with the National Rifle Association."--The Atlantic "Why do so many cling to beliefs that run counter to evidence? Sara Gorman, a public health expert, and Jack Gorman, a psychiatrist, investigate the psychological factors that lead to such self-defeating denial of facts and conclude that normal, evolutionarily adaptive tendencies act against us."--Scientific American "From Anti-vaxers to those who refute that HIV causes AIDS, scientific illiteracy, medical mistrust, and conspiracy thinking seriously threaten public health. In Denying to the Grave Sara and Jack Gorman expose the psychological underpinnings of denialism. Shining a light on those who propagate destructive denialism movements is our best weapon against their effects. The Gormans have done a great service with this well-reasoned and evidence-based book. There is no denying that."--Seth Kalichman, PhD, Professor of Psychological Sciences , University of Connecticut "Science brought us out of the Age of Darkness and into the Age of Enlightenment. Unfortunately, a powerful anti-science sentiment in America now threatens to send us back to a darker time-a time when we reject vaccines, deny climate change, and condemn genetic engineering technologies that have and will continue to save our lives. Denying to the Grave describes the forces that work against science and how science education alone won't solve the problem. Using a series of fascinating examples, the Gormans explain why it is so hard to convince people where the real risks lay."--Paul A. Offit, MD, Author of Bad Faith: When Religious Beliefs Undermine Modern Medicine "A fascinating, readable and very well informed analysis of why our brains trick us into resisting scientific evidence, even at the cost of our lives. An important and engaging book that should be on everyone's bookshelf."--Nicoli Nattrass, D.Phil Oxon, Professor, Centre for Social Science Research, University of Cape Town "A thought-provoking and entertaining examination of science denial focusing on the reasons that some of us are prone to developing opinions that are not supported by science and then hold on to these opinions in the face of evidence to the contrary. The authors' use of research to back up their arguments provides rigor while their use of anecdotes and stories makes the text more approachable. Ultimately, the marriage of these concepts, along with the lively narrative throughout the text, leads to an intriguing and timely resource during this time of political upheaval and the ensuing challenges in civil discourse. This text is appropriate for a wide audience." --PsycCRITIQUES

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