chapter  10
24 Pages

Chapter 10: Hoaxes andSelf-deception in Artand Science

ByJ. Bowyer Bell, Barton Whaley

In the notso-honest arts and sciences, the cheater has the advantage more often than not. The depressing evidence is that all the people can be fooled some of the time, but a mind prepared to test the ILLUSIONS for RUSE is better prepared for reality than those who, knowing or unknowing, seek to be cheated. At least Dali and De Chirico were involved with real (more or less) art. In the arts and sciences, as elsewhere, there are those quite willing not to slip in on tippy toes but simply to cheat. Mostly in painting, the cheaters tend to mimic the real, showing realistic illusions rather than inventing an entirely new body of work. The greatest of all known scientific illusions was created not to give truth a nudge or to get ahead but simply as a hoax without authorship. The temptation in the publish-or-perish world of contemporary research science is there: truth may need a nudge.