Scott's Book Review

Post Truth by Evan Davis

Scott

We have somehow drifted into an intellectual culture in which anybody’s opinion is as good as anyone else’s. Partly this is about the availability of platforms to shout your mouth off. Billions of social media posts, e-mails, snapchat, video clip contents, and web page opinions are washing around the globe as an ocean of irrational gibberish. To the undiscriminating they all seem to carry equal weight. ‘Facts’ are invented to suit prejudice, whilst the most powerful man in the world contradicts himself every five minutes. The value of truth as objectivity is lost. Any utterance is as true or false as you wish it to be. It would have been too bizarre even for Alice in Wonderland. We are in the world of ‘post-truth’.

To see how we got here, turn to Evan Davis.(https://www.evandavis.co.uk/) Bullshit is not only rife but apparently so effective that it’s become the communications strategy of our times. Davis sets out the dismaying logic which explains why bullshit has become pervasive and persistent. Why company annual reports have to be deceitful. Why estate agents should not be trusted. Why political campaigning is always the art of stretching the truth. Drawing on behavioural science, economics, psychology and his knowledge of the media, the author ends by providing readers with a tool-kit to handle the kinds of deceptions we encounter every day, and charts a route through the bewildering waters of the post-truth age.

Check if this insightful scourge of bullshitters is in stock at your local library here by consulting the online catalogue at https://www.sllclibrary.co.uk/cgi-bin/spydus.exe/MSGTRN/OPAC/BSEARCH

To enter a lifetime of thought about the concept of truth, begin with ‘Truth and Truthfulness’ (2002) by Bernard Williams (reviewed by me here http://sbr.lanark.co.uk/?p=1908)

368 pages in Little, Brown

First published 2017

ISBN 978-1408703311

Evan Davis

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