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Fake News and Finding Reliable Sources: Books and Articles
This guide covers how to recognize fake news and find reliable news sources. #Fake News
Bunk by Kevin YoungLonglisted for the National Book Award for Nonfiction "There Kevin Young goes again, giving us books we greatly need, cleverly disguised as books we merely want. Unexpectedly essential."--Marlon James Award-winning poet and critic Kevin Young tours us through a rogue's gallery of hoaxers, plagiarists, forgers, and fakers--from the humbug of P. T. Barnum and Edgar Allan Poe to the unrepentant bunk of JT LeRoy and Donald J. Trump.Bunk traces the history of the hoax as a peculiarly American phenomenon, examining what motivates hucksters and makes the rest of us so gullible. Disturbingly, Young finds that fakery is woven from stereotype and suspicion, race being the most insidious American hoax of all. He chronicles how Barnum came to fame by displaying figures like Joice Heth, a black woman whom he pretended was the 161-year-old nursemaid to George Washington, and What Is It?, an African American man Barnum professed was a newly discovered missing link in evolution. Bunk then turns to the hoaxing of history and the ways that forgers, plagiarists, and journalistic fakers invent backstories and falsehoods to sell us lies about themselves and about the world in our own time, from pretend Native Americans Grey Owl and Nasdijj to the deadly imposture of Clark Rockefeller, from the made-up memoirs of James Frey to the identity theft of Rachel Dolezal. In this brilliant and timely work, Young asks what it means to live in a post-factual world of "truthiness" where everything is up for interpretation and everyone is subject to a pervasive cynicism that damages our ideas of reality, fact, and art.
The Smear how shady political operatives and fake news control what you see, what you think, and how you vote by Sharyl AttkissonNew York Times Bestseller Ever wonder how politics turned into a take-no-prisoners blood sport? The New York Times bestselling author of Stonewalled pulls back the curtain on the shady world of opposition research and reveals the dirty tricks those in power use to influence your opinions. Behind most major political stories in the modern era, there is an agenda; an effort by opposition researchers, spin doctors, and outside interests to destroy an idea or a person. The tactic they use is the Smear. Every day, Americans are influenced by the Smear without knowing it. Paid forces cleverly shape virtually every image you cross. Maybe you read that Donald Trump is a racist misogynist, or saw someone on the news mocking the Bernie Sanders campaign. The trick of the Smear is that it is often based on some shred of truth, but these media-driven "hit pieces" are designed to obscure the truth. Success hinges on the Smear artist's ability to remain invisible; to make it seem as if their work is neither calculated nor scripted. It must appear to be precisely what it is not. Veteran journalist Sharyl Attkisson has witnessed this practice firsthand. After years of being pitched hit jobs and puff pieces, she's an expert at detecting Smear campaigns. Now, the hard-hitting investigative reporter shares her inside knowledge, revealing how the Smear takes shape and who its perpetrators are--including Clinton confidant Sidney Blumenthal and, most influential of all, "right-wing assassin turned left-wing assassin" (National Review) political operative David Brock and his Media Matters for America empire. Attkisson exposes the diabolical tactics of Smear artists, and their outrageous access to the biggest names in political media--operatives who are corrupting the political process, and discouraging widespread citizen involvement in our democracy.
Weaponized Lies by Daniel J. LevitinPreviously Published as A Field Guide to Lies We're surrounded by fringe theories, fake news, and pseudo-facts. These lies are getting repeated. New York Times bestselling author Daniel Levitin shows how to disarm these socially devastating inventions and get the American mind back on track. Here are the fundamental lessons in critical thinking that we need to know and share now. Investigating numerical misinformation, Daniel Levitin shows how mishandled statistics and graphs can give a grossly distorted perspective and lead us to terrible decisions. Wordy arguments on the other hand can easily be persuasive as they drift away from the facts in an appealing yet misguided way. The steps we can take to better evaluate news, advertisements, and reports are clearly detailed. Ultimately, Levitin turns to what underlies our ability to determine if something is true or false: the scientific method. He grapples with the limits of what we can and cannot know. Case studies are offered to demonstrate the applications of logical thinking to quite varied settings, spanning courtroom testimony, medical decision making, magic, modern physics, and conspiracy theories. This urgently needed book enables us to avoid the extremes of passive gullibility and cynical rejection. As Levitin attests: Truth matters. A post-truth era is an era of willful irrationality, reversing all the great advances humankind has made. Euphemisms like "fringe theories," "extreme views," "alt truth," and even "fake news" can literally be dangerous. Let's call lies what they are and catch those making them in the act.
Winning Votes by Abusing Reason by Jamie WatsonOver the past few decades, psychologists have discovered that human reasoning is defective in surprising ways. We are beset by numerous biases and heuristics, which lead us to reason poorly about things that matter to us. And while there are illuminating evolutionary explanations for how these biases and heuristics may have benefited our species in its phylogeny, psychologists are unanimous that these cognitive dispositions largely corrupt rather than aid our belief-forming practices. In Winning Votes by Abusing Reason: Political Rhetoric and Responsible Belief, Jamie Watson argues that political rhetoric, rather than helping us overcome these defects, exacerbates them. And standard attempts to address this problem, such as deliberative democracy and paternalism, tend to either exclude citizens from important decisions or give them the illusion of reasoning well, perpetuating poor and irresponsible political beliefs. This book concludes that, rather than attempt more political solutions, the most promising approach to forming and preserving responsible political beliefs is to adopt individual principles of epistemic caution. The author brings together insights from political philosophy, social epistemology, behavioral psychology, and agnotology to suggest how we might protect our belief-forming behavior from the corrosive effects of political rhetoric. Recommended for scholars of philosophy, rhetoric, political science, and communications.
Lies, Incorporated by Ari Rabin-Havt; Media Matters for AmericaA stunning investigation of the history of organized misinformation in politics. In today's post-truth political landscape, there is a carefully concealed but ever-growing industry of organized misinformation that exists to create and disseminate lies in the service of political agendas. Ari Rabin-Havt and Media Matters for America present a revelatory history of this industry--which they've dubbed Lies, Incorporated--and show how it has crippled legislative progress on issues including tobacco regulation, public health care, climate change, gun control, immigration, abortion, and same-sex marriage. Eye-opening and indispensable, Lies, Incorporated takes an unflinching look at the powerful network of politicians and special interest groups that have launched coordinated assaults on the truth to shape American politics.
The Stewart/Colbert Effect by Amarnath Amarasingam (Editor)The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and The Colbert Report have attracted much interest in recent years from popular audiences as well as scholars in various disciplines. Both Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert have been named on Time magazine's list of the most influential people in the world. The ten essays in this interdisciplinary collection explore the issues engendered by the popularity of entertainment news, including the role of satire in politics, the declining level of trust in traditional sources of media, the shows' cathartic or informational function, and the ways in which these shows influence public opinion. Instructors considering this book for use in a course may request an examination copy here.
Statistics can be misleading whether intentional or not. Here is an excellent Ted talk where Peter Donnelly reveals how mistakes in interpreting statistics can have a devastating impact on criminal trials.