Using science to explain art is a good way to butcher both
Proust was a neuroscientist. Jane Austen was a game theorist. Dickens was a gastroenterologist. Enough with the using science to explain art.
He's apologized for intellectual dishonesty. But not for intellectual laziness.
Journalists love to bust one another for quantifiable crimes like plagiarism. But they have a much harder time dealing with intangible questions like whether a piece of work is any good. Jonah Lehrer's apology tour—long on analyses of his plagiarism, short on discussion of his mediocrity—is a pretty good case in point.
BuzzFeed constructs its political content for the Twitter-fied world.
Imagine: How Creativity Works By Jonah Lehrer (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 279 pp., $26) THE YEAR IS 1965. Bob Dylan has just completed two weeks of touring in England. He is tired—exhausted actually. He needs a break. There is a tiny cabin in upstate New York where he can stay, where he can get away from it all, where he can find himself. After returning from Europe, he does just that. It’s him and his motorcycle. No more songwriting, no more guitar, no more pressure, no more responsibility. Hell, he might start working on a novel.
Early childhood intervention seems like one of the few anti-poverty programs that liberals can sell politically. And that's no surprise: Who wants to argue against spending money to help kids, even poor ones? The trouble is that it hasn't always been clear these programs work. In particular, evidence suggests that preschools and other programs for poor children have only a temporary effect: Kids show gains in IQ but, within a few years, those gains disappear. But now comes reason to think these programs really do have impact.