Taboo Issues in Social Science: Questioning Conventional Wisdom

Taboo Issues in Social Science: Questioning Conventional Wisdom

by Anthony Walsh


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This book is an expedition into a number of controversial issues in the social sciences with the intention of challenging the conventional wisdom on those issues. While most social science research is interesting and important, a fair amount of social science research is thinly disguised advocacy research in which conclusions too often precede inquiries. The primary topics are those that the journal Nature described as "Taboo". In order of the degree of censure, the topics are: race, sex differences, intelligence, and violence. The only way to examine these topics with the social science seal of approval attached is through a strictly environmental lens. To bring biological factors to bear on them is politically incorrect and can bring the wrath of the academy down on one’s head. Although many researchers successfully bring biology into their research on these issues, they are said to risk career and reputation for doing so. Speech codes stifling free intellectual exchange pervade the ivory tower, and an overwhelmingly liberal faculty hell-bent on eliminating any vestiges of opposition to their ideology. This is unconscionable in an institution that is supposed to value free exchange of all ideas and opinions.

The current state of academic social science is examined before entering the substantive realm to try to explore how the topics I explore have become protected from any claims of "naturalness." Because the left rejects the idea of human nature, it insists that these things are products of social learning and/or social construction and are entirely fluid. To maintain this position in light of the huge and exponential successes of the natural sciences, the left embraces such frames of reasoning as postmodernism, radical relativism, multiculturalism, and political correctness, all of which are examined in this book. Also discussed are human nature, whiteness studies, political temperaments, various criminal justice issues, and capitalism versus socialism.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781622732067
Publisher: Vernon Art and Science
Publication date: 04/25/2017
Series: Critical Perspectives on Social Science
Pages: 310
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.75(d)

About the Author

Anthony Walsh entered academia upon earning a degree in criminology after 25 years in the "real world" as a Marine, police officer, and probation officer. His area of expertise is biosocial criminology, and he was honored with the 2014 David Rowe Lifetime Achievement Award for his contributions to this area. He is also interested in legal philosophy and statistics. He has written 36 other books and approximately 150 articles, many on topics included in this book.

Table of Contents



Chapter 1 Postmodernism, Political Correctness and the Tyranny of the Academy

Chapter 2 Feminism: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Chapter 3 Whiteness Studies and Racist Amerikkka

Chapter 4 Ideological Battles over Human Nature

Chapter 5 Social Constructionism and Gender

Chapter 6 Race: A Dangerous Concept?

Chapter 7 Politics and Personality: Callous Conservatives and Loving Liberals?

Chapter 8 Capitalism and Socialism: The Devil’s Dung versus Satan’s Spore

Chapter 9 Socioeconomic Success: Talent Plus Effort or White Privilege?

Chapter 10 Cultural Relativism, Multiculturalism, Violence, and Human Rights

Chapter 11 “Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics:” Crime and Justice

Chapter 12 Culture, Constitution, and Government



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