Ignorance

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Understanding Ignorance

Understanding Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author:
Editor: MIT Press
ISBN: 0262341042
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Understanding Ignorance by Summary

An exploration of what we can know about what we don't know: why ignorance is more than simply a lack of knowledge. Ignorance is trending. Politicians boast, “I'm not a scientist.” Angry citizens object to a proposed state motto because it is in Latin, and “This is America, not Mexico or Latin America.” Lack of experience, not expertise, becomes a credential. Fake news and repeated falsehoods are accepted and shape firm belief. Ignorance about American government and history is so alarming that the ideal of an informed citizenry now seems quaint. Conspiracy theories and false knowledge thrive. This may be the Information Age, but we do not seem to be well informed. In this book, philosopher Daniel DeNicola explores ignorance—its abundance, its endurance, and its consequences. DeNicola aims to understand ignorance, which seems at first paradoxical. How can the unknown become known—and still be unknown? But he argues that ignorance is more than a lack or a void, and that it has dynamic and complex interactions with knowledge. Taking a broadly philosophical approach, DeNicola examines many forms of ignorance, using the metaphors of ignorance as place, boundary, limit, and horizon. He treats willful ignorance and describes the culture in which ignorance becomes an ideological stance. He discusses the ethics of ignorance, including the right not to know, considers the supposed virtues of ignorance, and concludes that there are situations in which ignorance is morally good. Ignorance is neither pure nor simple. It is both an accusation and a defense (“You are ignorant!” “Yes, but I didn't know!”). Its practical effects range from the inconsequential to the momentous. It is a scourge, but, DeNicola argues daringly, it may also be a refuge, a value, even an accompaniment to virtue.

Deliberate Ignorance

Deliberate Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Ralph Hertwig,Christoph Engel
Editor: MIT Press
ISBN: 0262362619
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Deliberate Ignorance by Ralph Hertwig,Christoph Engel Summary

Psychologists, economists, historians, computer scientists, sociologists, philosophers, and legal scholars explore the conscious choice not to seek information. The history of intellectual thought abounds with claims that knowledge is valued and sought, yet individuals and groups often choose not to know. We call the conscious choice not to seek or use knowledge (or information) deliberate ignorance. When is this a virtue, when is it a vice, and what can be learned from formally modeling the underlying motives? On which normative grounds can it be judged? Which institutional interventions can promote or prevent it? In this book, psychologists, economists, historians, computer scientists, sociologists, philosophers, and legal scholars explore the scope of deliberate ignorance.

Ignorance

Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Stuart Firestein
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199939330
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Ignorance by Stuart Firestein Summary

Knowledge is a big subject, says Stuart Firestein, but ignorance is a bigger one. And it is ignorance--not knowledge--that is the true engine of science. Most of us have a false impression of science as a surefire, deliberate, step-by-step method for finding things out and getting things done. In fact, says Firestein, more often than not, science is like looking for a black cat in a dark room, and there may not be a cat in the room. The process is more hit-or-miss than you might imagine, with much stumbling and groping after phantoms. But it is exactly this "not knowing," this puzzling over thorny questions or inexplicable data, that gets researchers into the lab early and keeps them there late, the thing that propels them, the very driving force of science. Firestein shows how scientists use ignorance to program their work, to identify what should be done, what the next steps are, and where they should concentrate their energies. And he includes a catalog of how scientists use ignorance, consciously or unconsciously--a remarkable range of approaches that includes looking for connections to other research, revisiting apparently settled questions, using small questions to get at big ones, and tackling a problem simply out of curiosity. The book concludes with four case histories--in cognitive psychology, theoretical physics, astronomy, and neuroscience--that provide a feel for the nuts and bolts of ignorance, the day-to-day battle that goes on in scientific laboratories and in scientific minds with questions that range from the quotidian to the profound. Turning the conventional idea about science on its head, Ignorance opens a new window on the true nature of research. It is a must-read for anyone curious about science.

The Anthropology of Ignorance

The Anthropology of Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author: C. High,A. Kelly,J. Mair
Editor: Springer
ISBN: 1137033126
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The Anthropology of Ignorance by C. High,A. Kelly,J. Mair Summary

The question of ignorance occupies a central place in anthropological theory and practice. This volume argues that the concept of ignorance has largely been pursued as the opposite of knowledge or even its obverse. Though they cover wide empirical ground - from clients of a fertility treatment center in New York to families grappling with suicide in Greenland - contributors share a commitment to understanding the concept as a productive, social practice. Ultimately, The Anthropology of Ignorance asks whether an academic commitment to knowledge can be squared with lived significance of ignorance and how taking it seriously might alter anthropological research practices.

QI: The Book of Animal Ignorance

QI: The Book of Animal Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author: John Lloyd,John Mitchinson
Editor: Faber & Faber
ISBN: 0571249175
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QI: The Book of Animal Ignorance by John Lloyd,John Mitchinson Summary

Join QI's expedition into the animal kingdom to encounter 100 of its most remarkable subjects. Marvel at the elephants that walk on tiptoe, pigs that shine in the dark, and the woodlouse that drinks through its bottom. Albatrosses can fly non-stop for ten years without touching the ground. Box jellyfish have twenty-four eyes. Geese mourn their dead. Koalas don't drink. Monkeys pay to look at porn. Lobsters live for a century. Mice sing while having sex. Spiders can fly.

Willful Ignorance

Willful Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Dr. Herbert I. Weisberg
Editor: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1118593790
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Willful Ignorance by Dr. Herbert I. Weisberg Summary

An original account of willful ignorance and how this principle relates to modern probability and statistical methods Through a series of colorful stories about great thinkers and the problems they chose to solve, the author traces the historical evolution of probability and explains how statistical methods have helped to propel scientific research. However, the past success of statistics has depended on vast, deliberate simplifications amounting to willful ignorance, and this very success now threatens future advances in medicine, the social sciences, and other fields. Limitations of existing methods result in frequent reversals of scientific findings and recommendations, to the consternation of both scientists and the lay public. Willful Ignorance: The Mismeasure of Uncertainty exposes the fallacy of regarding probability as the full measure of our uncertainty. The book explains how statistical methodology, though enormously productive and influential over the past century, is approaching a crisis. The deep and troubling divide between qualitative and quantitative modes of research, and between research and practice, are reflections of this underlying problem. The author outlines a path toward the re-engineering of data analysis to help close these gaps and accelerate scientific discovery. Willful Ignorance: The Mismeasure of Uncertainty presents essential information and novel ideas that should be of interest to anyone concerned about the future of scientific research. The book is especially pertinent for professionals in statistics and related fields, including practicing and research clinicians, biomedical and social science researchers, business leaders, and policy-makers.

QI: The Second Book of General Ignorance

QI: The Second Book of General Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author: John Lloyd,John Mitchinson
Editor: Faber & Faber
ISBN: 0571273750
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QI: The Second Book of General Ignorance by John Lloyd,John Mitchinson Summary

Just when you thought it was safe to start showing off again, the bestselling authors of The Book of General Ignorance and 1,277 QI Facts To Blow Your Socks Off are back. With a foreword by Stephen Fry, this parcel of unimaginable information is here to solve a few common misconceptions, mistakes and misunderstandings. Octopuses have six legs, oranges aren't orange, bats aren't blind, napoleon wasn't short, vikings didn't wear horned helmets, there is no such thing as a fish. QI: The Second Book of General Ignorance is the essential set text for everyone who's proud to admit that they don't know everything, and an ideal stick with which to beat people who think they do. John Lloyd and John Mitchinson are the bestselling authors of QI: The Book of General Ignorance and 1,277 QI Facts To Blow Your Socks Off. Here they present a wonderful collection of astonishingly interesting facts, perfect for pub quiz lovers, trivia buffs and general knowledge experts alike.

The End of Ignorance

The End of Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author: John Mighton
Editor: Vintage Canada
ISBN: 0307373444
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The End of Ignorance by John Mighton Summary

A revolutionary call for a new understanding of how people learn. The End of Ignorance conceives of a world in which no child is left behind – a world based on the assumption that each child has the potential to be successful in every subject. John Mighton argues that by recognizing the barriers that we have experienced in our own educational development, by identifying the moment that we became disenchanted with a certain subject and forever closed ourselves off to it, we will be able to eliminate these same barriers from standing in the way of our children. A passionate examination of our present education system, The End of Ignorance shows how we all can work together to reinvent the way that we are taught. John Mighton, the author of The Myth of Ability, is the founder of JUMP Math, a system of learning based on the fostering of emergent intelligence. The program has proved so successful an entire class of Grade 3 students, including so-called slow learners, scored over 90% on a Grade 6 math test. A group of British children who had effectively been written off as too unruly responded so enthusiastically and had such impressive results using the JUMP method that the school board has adopted the program. Inspired by the work he has done with thousands of students, Mighton shows us why we must not underestimate how much ground can be covered one small step at a time, and challenges us to re-examine the assumptions underlying current educational theory. He pays attention to how kids pay attention, chronicles what captures their imaginations, and explains why their sense of self-confidence and ability to focus are as important to their academic success at school as the content of their lessons.

Ignorance and Uncertainty

Ignorance and Uncertainty Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Michael Smithson
Editor: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 1461236282
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Ignorance and Uncertainty by Michael Smithson Summary

Ignorance and Uncertainty overviews a variety of approaches to the problem of indeterminacies in human thought and behavior. This book examines, in depth, trends in the psychology of judgment and decision-making under uncertainty or ignorance. Research from the fields of cognitive psychology, social psychology, organizational studies, sociology, and social anthroplogy are reviewed here in anticipation of what Dr. Smithson characterizes as the beginning of a "creative dialogue between these researchers". Ignorance and Uncertainty offers the conceptual framework for understanding the paradigms associated with current research. It discusses the ways in which attitudes toward ignorance and uncertainty are changing, and addresses issues previously ignored.

Regimes of Ignorance

Regimes of Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Roy Dilley,Thomas G. Kirsch
Editor: Berghahn Books
ISBN: 1782388397
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Regimes of Ignorance by Roy Dilley,Thomas G. Kirsch Summary

Non-knowledge should not be simply regarded as the opposite of knowledge, but as complementary to it: each derives its character and meaning from the other and from their interaction. Knowledge does not colonize the space of ignorance in the progressive march of science; rather, knowledge and ignorance are mutually shaped in social and political domains of partial, shifting, and temporal relationships. This volume’s ethnographic analyses provide a theoretical frame through which to consider the production and reproduction of ignorance, non-knowledge, and secrecy, as well as the wider implications these ideas have for anthropology and related disciplines in the social sciences and humanities.

The Virtues of Ignorance

The Virtues of Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Bill Vitek
Editor: University Press of Kentucky
ISBN: 0813172861
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The Virtues of Ignorance by Bill Vitek Summary

Human dependence on technology has increased exponentially over the past several centuries, and so too has the notion that we can fix environmental problems with scientific applications. The Virtues of Ignorance: Complexity, Sustainability, and the Limits of Knowledge proposes an alternative to this hubristic, shortsighted, and dangerous worldview. The contributors argue that uncritical faith in scientific knowledge has created many of the problems now threatening the planet and that our wholesale reliance on scientific progress is both untenable and myopic. Bill Vitek, Wes Jackson, and a diverse group of thinkers, including Wendell Berry, Anna Peterson, and Robert Root-Bernstein, offer profound arguments for the advantages of an ignorance-based worldview. Their essays explore this philosophy from numerous perspectives, including its origins, its essence, and how its implementation can preserve vital natural resources for posterity. All conclude that we must simply accept the proposition that our ignorance far exceeds our knowledge and always will. Rejecting the belief that science and technology are benignly at the service of society, the authors argue that recognizing ignorance might be the only path to reliable knowledge. They also uncover an interesting paradox: knowledge and insight accumulate fastest in the minds of those who hold an ignorance-based worldview, for by examining the alternatives to a technology-based culture, they expand their imaginations. Demonstrating that knowledge-based worldviews are more dangerous than useful, The Virtues of Ignorance looks closely at the relationship between the land and the future generations who will depend on it. The authors argue that we can never improve upon nature but that we can, by putting this new perspective to work in our professional and personal lives, live sustainably on Earth.

Ignorance and Imagination : The Epistemic Origin of the Problem of Consciousness

Ignorance and Imagination : The Epistemic Origin of the Problem of Consciousness Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Research School of Social Sciences The Australian National University Daniel Stoljar Senior Fellow
Editor: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 0198041853
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Ignorance and Imagination : The Epistemic Origin of the Problem of Consciousness by Research School of Social Sciences The Australian National University Daniel Stoljar Senior Fellow Summary

Ignorance and Imagination advances a novel way to resolve the central philosophical problem about the mind: how it is that consciousness or experience fits into a larger naturalistic picture of the world. The correct response to the problem, Stoljar argues, is not to posit a realm of experience distinct from the physical, nor to deny the reality of phenomenal experience, nor even to rethink our understanding of consciousness and the language we use to talk about it. Instead, we should view the problem itself as a consequence of our ignorance of the relevant physical facts. Stoljar shows that this change of orientation is well motivated historically, empirically, and philosophically, and that it has none of the side effects it is sometimes thought to have. The result is a philosophical perspective on the mind that has a number of far-reaching consequences: for consciousness studies, for our place in nature, and for the way we think about the relationship between philosophy and science.

Ignorance

Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Stuart Firestein
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199828083
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Ignorance by Stuart Firestein Summary

Knowledge is a big subject, says Stuart Firestein, but ignorance is a bigger one. And it is ignorance--not knowledge--that is the true engine of science. Most of us have a false impression of science as a surefire, deliberate, step-by-step method for finding things out and getting things done. In fact, says Firestein, more often than not, science is like looking for a black cat in a dark room, and there may not be a cat in the room. The process is more hit-or-miss than you might imagine, with much stumbling and groping after phantoms. But it is exactly this "not knowing," this puzzling over thorny questions or inexplicable data, that gets researchers into the lab early and keeps them there late, the thing that propels them, the very driving force of science. Firestein shows how scientists use ignorance to program their work, to identify what should be done, what the next steps are, and where they should concentrate their energies. And he includes a catalog of how scientists use ignorance, consciously or unconsciously--a remarkable range of approaches that includes looking for connections to other research, revisiting apparently settled questions, using small questions to get at big ones, and tackling a problem simply out of curiosity. The book concludes with four case histories--in cognitive psychology, theoretical physics, astronomy, and neuroscience--that provide a feel for the nuts and bolts of ignorance, the day-to-day battle that goes on in scientific laboratories and in scientific minds with questions that range from the quotidian to the profound. Turning the conventional idea about science on its head, Ignorance opens a new window on the true nature of research. It is a must-read for anyone curious about science.

Ignorance and Surprise

Ignorance and Surprise Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Matthias Gross
Editor: MIT Press
ISBN: 0262265613
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Ignorance and Surprise by Matthias Gross Summary

The relationship between ignorance and surprise and a conceptual framework for dealing with the unexpected, as seen in ecological design projects. Ignorance and surprise belong together: surprises can make people aware of their own ignorance. And yet, perhaps paradoxically, a surprising event in scientific research—one that defies prediction or risk assessment—is often a window to new and unexpected knowledge. In this book, Matthias Gross examines the relationship between ignorance and surprise, proposing a conceptual framework for handling the unexpected and offering case studies of ecological design that demonstrate the advantages of allowing for surprises and including ignorance in the design and negotiation processes. Gross draws on classical and contemporary sociological accounts of ignorance and surprise in science and ecology and integrates these with the idea of experiment in society. He develops a notion of how unexpected occurrences can be incorporated into a model of scientific and technological development that includes the experimental handling of surprises. Gross discusses different projects in ecological design, including Chicago's restoration of the shoreline of Lake Michigan and Germany's revitalization of brownfields near Leipzig. These cases show how ignorance and surprise can successfully play out in ecological design projects, and how the acknowledgment of the unknown can become a part of decision making. The appropriation of surprises can lead to robust design strategies. Ecological design, Gross argues, is neither a linear process of master planning nor a process of trial and error but a carefully coordinated process of dealing with unexpected turns by means of experimental practice.

Ignorance and Imagination

Ignorance and Imagination Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Daniel Stoljar
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0190294426
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Ignorance and Imagination by Daniel Stoljar Summary

Ignorance and Imagination advances a novel way to resolve the central philosophical problem about the mind: how it is that consciousness or experience fits into a larger naturalistic picture of the world. The correct response to the problem, Stoljar argues, is not to posit a realm of experience distinct from the physical, nor to deny the reality of phenomenal experience, nor even to rethink our understanding of consciousness and the language we use to talk about it. Instead, we should view the problem itself as a consequence of our ignorance of the relevant physical facts, Stoljar shows that this change of orientation is well motivated historically, empirically, and philosophically, and that it has none of the side effects it is sometimes thought to have. The result is a philosophical perspective on the mind that has a number of far-reaching consequences: for consciousness studies, for our place in nature, and for the way we think about the relationship between philosophy and science.

A Defense of Ignorance

A Defense of Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Cynthia Townley
Editor: Lexington Books
ISBN: 0739168185
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A Defense of Ignorance by Cynthia Townley Summary

A Defense of Ignorance develops new ideas in feminist epistemology by exploring diverse and sometimes positive roles for ignorance. Cynthia Townley argues that epistemic values cannot simply be reduced to the value of increasing knowledge and that ignorance is not merely inescapable for epistemic agents, but, rather, is valuable. Townley shows that ignorance-friendly epistemology offers a better descriptive and normative account of human epistemic practices. This interpretation challenges the traditional assumption that increasing knowledge is the definitive epistemic goal. The book makes a major contribution to revisionary epistemology and to the expanding fields of social epistemology and feminist epistemology. All social scientists stand to benefit from Townley's analysis, most of all those interested in knowledge and in feminist scholarship.

Epistemologies of Ignorance in Education

Epistemologies of Ignorance in Education Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Erik Malewski,Nathalia Jaramillo
Editor: IAP
ISBN: 1617353477
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Epistemologies of Ignorance in Education by Erik Malewski,Nathalia Jaramillo Summary

Epistemologies of Ignorance provide educators a distinct epistemological view on questions of marginalization, oppression, relations of power and dominance, difference, philosophy, and even death among our youth. The authors of this edited collection challenge the ambivalence – ignorance – found in the construction of curriculum, teaching practices, research guidelines, and policy mandates in our schools. Further, ignorance is also considered a necessary by- product of knowledge production. In this sense, the authors explore not only issues of complicity but also issues of oppression in spite of educators’ liberatory intentions. While this is the first systematic effort to transfer epistemologies of ignorance to the educational scene, this movement has its roots in race, class, gender, and sexuality studies, particularly the work of Charles Mills, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, Shannon Sullivan, and Nancy Tuana. It is our unequivocal belief that, while this is transformative and powerful scholarship, the study of ignorance remains understudied and under-theorized in education scholarship, from curriculum studies and cultural foundations to science education and educational psychology. This collection highlights without apology why this dangerous state of affairs cannot continue.

Ignorance and Surprise

Ignorance and Surprise Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Matthias Gross
Editor: MIT Press
ISBN: 0262265613
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Ignorance and Surprise by Matthias Gross Summary

The relationship between ignorance and surprise and a conceptual framework for dealing with the unexpected, as seen in ecological design projects. Ignorance and surprise belong together: surprises can make people aware of their own ignorance. And yet, perhaps paradoxically, a surprising event in scientific research—one that defies prediction or risk assessment—is often a window to new and unexpected knowledge. In this book, Matthias Gross examines the relationship between ignorance and surprise, proposing a conceptual framework for handling the unexpected and offering case studies of ecological design that demonstrate the advantages of allowing for surprises and including ignorance in the design and negotiation processes. Gross draws on classical and contemporary sociological accounts of ignorance and surprise in science and ecology and integrates these with the idea of experiment in society. He develops a notion of how unexpected occurrences can be incorporated into a model of scientific and technological development that includes the experimental handling of surprises. Gross discusses different projects in ecological design, including Chicago's restoration of the shoreline of Lake Michigan and Germany's revitalization of brownfields near Leipzig. These cases show how ignorance and surprise can successfully play out in ecological design projects, and how the acknowledgment of the unknown can become a part of decision making. The appropriation of surprises can lead to robust design strategies. Ecological design, Gross argues, is neither a linear process of master planning nor a process of trial and error but a carefully coordinated process of dealing with unexpected turns by means of experimental practice.

Perspectives on Ignorance from Moral and Social Philosophy

Perspectives on Ignorance from Moral and Social Philosophy Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Rik Peels
Editor: Routledge
ISBN: 1317369556
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Perspectives on Ignorance from Moral and Social Philosophy by Rik Peels Summary

This edited collection focuses on the moral and social dimensions of ignorance—an undertheorized category in analytic philosophy. Contributors address such issues as the relation between ignorance and deception, ignorance as a moral excuse, ignorance as a legal excuse, and the relation between ignorance and moral character. In the moral realm, ignorance is sometimes considered as an excuse; some specific kind of ignorance seems to be implied by a moral character; and ignorance is closely related to moral risk. Ignorance has certain social dimensions as well: it has been claimed to be the engine of science; it seems to be entailed by privacy and secrecy; and it is widely thought to constitute a legal excuse in certain circumstances. Together, these contributions provide a sustained inquiry into the nature of ignorance and the pivotal role it plays in the moral and social domains.

Science and the Production of Ignorance

Science and the Production of Ignorance Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Janet Kourany,Martin Carrier
Editor: MIT Press
ISBN: 0262357151
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Science and the Production of Ignorance by Janet Kourany,Martin Carrier Summary

An introduction to the new area of ignorance studies that examines how science produces ignorance—both actively and passively, intentionally and unintentionally. We may think of science as our foremost producer of knowledge, but for the past decade, science has also been studied as an important source of ignorance. The historian of science Robert Proctor has coined the term agnotology to refer to the study of ignorance, and much of the ignorance studied in this new area is produced by science. Whether an active or passive construct, intended or unintended, this ignorance is, in Proctor's words, “made, maintained, and manipulated” by science. This volume examines forms of scientific ignorance and their consequences. A dialogue between Proctor and Peter Galison offers historical context, presenting the concerns and motivations of pioneers in the field. Essays by leading historians and philosophers of science examine the active construction of ignorance by biased design and interpretation of experiments and empirical studies, as seen in the “false advertising” by climate change deniers; the “virtuous” construction of ignorance—for example, by curtailing research on race- and gender-related cognitive differences; and ignorance as the unintended by-product of choices made in the research process, when rules, incentives, and methods encourage an emphasis on the beneficial and commercial effects of industrial chemicals, and when certain concepts and even certain groups' interests are inaccessible in a given conceptual framework. Contributors Martin Carrier, Carl F. Cranor, Peter Galison, Paul Hoyningen-Huene, Philip Kitcher, Janet Kourany, Hugh Lacey, Robert Proctor, Londa Schiebinger, Miriam Solomon, Torsten Wilholt