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A Doctoral Dissertation on a Geocentric Flat Earth

YAËL NAZÉ

On April 1, 2017, Professor Hafedh Ateb, a scientist who founded the Tunisian Astronomical Society, published a post on his Facebook page to denounce a forthcoming PhD thesis (Ateb 2017). Its subject? The geocentric universe with a flat and young Earth. It was not an April Fool’s joke.

With a bit of condescension, the astronomical (or more generally the scientific) community on this side of the Atlantic often thinks that geocentrism and young (or flat) Earth are typically American ideas. We generally ignore the regular Eurobarometers2 revealing that one third of Europeans prefer a geocentric model to a heliocentric one. We also choose to avoid seeing the multitude of YouTube videos in languages other than English explaining at length why the earth is flat or young. Indeed, few of us are doing outreach, and even fewer are tackling or simply encountering pseudosciences.

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Progressophobia: Why Things Are Better Than You Think They Are STEVEN PIKER Percival Lowell and the Canals of Mars The Curious Question of Ghost Taxonomy and much more!

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Other Articles in this Issue


Editor’s Letter
I grew up in the 1950s when, for the most
NEWS AND COMMENT
At approximately 8:07 am on January 13, 2018, the state
Barry Williams, founder of the Australian Skeptics, has died. Tim
Newly elected CSI Fellow Michael E. Mann has been awarded
Bertha Vazquez, director of the Teacher Institute for Evolutionary Science
COMMENTARIES
I was recently reported for calling Britain’s heir to the
Somehow, some way, the flat-earth movement continues to make waves
INVESTIGATIVE FILES
Joe Nickell, PhD, is CSI’s senior research fellow and, among
NOTES ON A STRANGE WORLD
Massimo Polidoro is an investigator of the paranormal, lecturer, and
BEHAVIOR & BELIEF
Stuart Vyse is a psychologist and author of Believing in
SKEPTICAL INQUIREE
Benjamin Radford is a research fellow at the Committee for
FEATURES
Intellectuals dislike the very idea of progress. Our own mental bugs also distort our understanding of the world, blinding us to improvements in the human condition underway globally—and to the ideas that have made them possible
Traumatic Memories Are Alive and Well and Eating Your Innards Out
The ‘canals’ of Mars don’t exist, and they never did; yet they were repeatedly reported and defended as scientific realities by many great astronomers. Why?
The nature of ghosts remains unknown despite centuries of collective effort by legions of ghost hunters
A critical examination of the book Who Was Adam? demonstrates that creationism is not science
A mass of solid ice weighing nearly a ton fell on a Scottish farm on the estate at Ord during a thunderstorm on July 30, 1849. Theories abound as to its origin, some more fanciful than others. New analysis suggests that the ice originated locally and did not fall from the sky, as has long been thought
REVIEWS
On Human Nature
In her documentary about the disgraced doctor most identified as
The Winter 2017/2018 “Special Collector’s Edition” of Scientific American is
The Most Hated Man in America: Jerry Sandusky and the
NEW AND NOTABLE
Listing does not preclude future review
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
I want no more issues sent. I am specifically and
THE LAST LAUGH
As I write this we are a few days away