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Saturday, 11 December 2010

Profs miss out on Counterknowledge award......

Acknowledgement:  BS Historian
http://bshistorian.wordpress.com/2008/09/28/stonehenge-snake-oil/

How did I miss this one?   Sadly, in the event, Profs Wainwright and Darvill missed out on this award, having got less than 1% of the vote.  The 2008 winner was Prince Charles.  Well, no doubt the BBC is working with the two senior archaeologists as we speak, with a view to making a bigger and better TV spectacular for future transmission.  Perhaps, when that programme goes out, the two Profs will be in with a much better chance of winning this prestigious award.  It is, so I understand, even more hotly disputed than the Bad Sex Award for which novelists so manfully strive every year......

Discussing the Darvill / Wainwright work, Counterknowledge said:
Actually, this is not so much “revolutionary stuff” as guesswork. And it’s true that reputable academics often have to guess, to follow their hunches, in order to make a breakthrough. But there something about the insistent tone adopted by Wainwright and Darvill, heavily flavoured with wishful thinking, that reminds me more of Baigent and Leigh than mainstream archaeology. And don’t forget that this conveniently colourful theory is linked to a TV series and book.
Thanks to cunning and unscrupulous cult archaeologists, respectable researchers now find themselves under pressure to dress up their discoveries in commercially appealing garb. “Prehistoric Lourdes” has a nice ring to it – but is there any truth in the theory? 
http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/programmes/stonehenge/article1.shtml

Stonehenge unhinged.

http://bshistorian.wordpress.com/2008/11/24/stonehenge-unhinged/

By bshistorian
Just a quick update to a previous post, thanks to my recent (well behind the times) discovery of the rather awesome website (and book) Counterknowledge.com. Turns out they came to similar conclusions on this one, back in April, well before the Timewatch programme that caught my attention. More recently they posted news from the main competing team of archaeologists that actively debunks this stuff. Best of all, the Stonehenge healing “hypothesis” has made it into their nominations for the Counter Knowledge Award 2008! Nice one chaps, although I have to say that’s some pretty stiff competition they’re up against… if anyone’s thinking of voting for this, bear in mind that all of the others have prior form, and they aren’t professionals in their field. These guys are, which is what makes this story so unusual.

2008 Counterknowledge Awards -- nomination
http://counterknowledge.com/2008/11/vote-now-in-the-2008-counterknowledge-awards/

Tim Darvill & Geoff Wainwright
Way back in April, we said there was something fishy about Darvill and Wainwright’s theory – unveiled in a BBC documentary – that Stonehenge was intended as a stone-age Lourdes. Sure enough, in October of this year, the experts agreed. Programme commissioners, take note: this is what happens when you set out to turn archaeology into tabloid headlines.

2 comments:

Barrie Foster said...

Coincidentally, I am just now re-reading Damian Thompson's 2008 edition of 'Counterknowledge'. Sadly, I missed the online vote. Interestingly, the author was credited as editor-in-chief of the Catholic Herald and a leader writer for the Daily Telegraph. Perhaps anti-bs is finally reaching the mainstream media? We can only hope.

BRIAN JOHN said...

I know it's all a bit of fun -- But the fact that Prince Charles "won" the 2008 award tell us a fair bit about how the voters are manipulated by the media. There is a right-wing / libertarian / anti science agenda, fed by certain sections of the media -- and Prince Charles is lampooned by that part of the media for his supposed tendency to pontificate on things he knows nothing about. He is attacked, for instance, on his "credulous acceptance of GM conspiracy theories." Well, I happen to know a fair bit about what Prince Charles has actually said about GM -- and he has an in-depth knowledge of the issues that is infinitely greater than that of the clowns who pontificate about his supposed ignorance. He's pretty well spot on, which is why those who hate regulation and precaution get so angry with him......