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113,002.  This is a scummy little sewer of a movie, a cesspool that lingers sadistically on shots of a killer terrifying and killing helpless women, and then is shameless enough to end with an appeal to law and order.  The people who made From Ten to Midnight have every right to be ashamed of themselves – and that includes Charles Bronson, whose name on the marquee is the only reason anybody would come to see it.  (Criticism & Film)  Roger Ebert

 

 

459.  Now, the invention of the scientific method and science is, I’m sure we’ll all agree, the most powerful intellectual idea, the most powerful framework for thinking and investigating and understanding and challenging the world around us that there is, and that it rests on the premise that any idea is there to be attacked and if it withstands the attack then it lives to fight another day and it doesn’t withstand the attack then down it goes.  Religion doesn’t seem to work like that; it has certain ideas at the heart of it which we call sacred or holy or whatever.  That’s an idea we're so familiar with, whether we subscribe to it or not, that it’s kind of odd to think what it actually means, because really what it means is ‘Here is an idea or a notion that you’re not allowed to say anything bad about; you’re just not.  Why not? – because you’re not!’  (Religion & Holy & Criticism & Science)  Douglas Adams

 

531.  There’s even a sense in which being clear sounds aggressive.  There’s a certain kind of mind to whom clarity is if not offensive kind of threatening.  Now religion is a very special case because religion has become accustomed to being treated as a kind of privileged favoured child who never gets scolded, never has to stand up to the sort of ordinary criticism any other field like politics does.  (Religion & Criticism)  Professor Richard Dawkins, interviewing P Z Myers 2008

 

 

533.  People like to say that faith and science can live together side by side, but I don’t think they can.  They’re deeply opposed.  Science is a discipline of investigation and constructive doubt, questing with logic, evidence and reason to draw conclusions; faith by stark contrast demands a positive suspension of critical faculties.  Science proceeds by setting up hypotheses, ideas or models and then attempts to disprove them, so a scientist is constantly asking questions, being sceptical.  Religion is about turning untested belief into unshakable truth through the power of institutions and the passage of time.  (Religion & Faith & Science & Doubt & Criticism & Scepticism & Truth)  Professor Richard Dawkins, The Root of All Evil? The God Delusion

 

 

59,065.  The battle for evolution is just a skirmish in a larger war.  A larger war for rationality, for scepticism, for critical thinking, for a rational scientific view.  (Atheism & Rationality & Scepticism & Criticism & Science & Evolution & Religion)  Richard Dawkins, with Dan Dennett & Sam Harris & Ayaan Hirsi Ali, GAC Melbourne 2012

 

 

575.  Religions have contrived to make it impossible to disagree with them critically without being rude.  (Religion & Criticism & Rudeness)  Daniel C Dennett, The Four Horsemen: Dawkins & Dennett & Harris & Hitchens

 

 

619.  There is an overarching taboo around criticising religious faith.  (Religion & Criticism)  Sam Harris, New York 2005 Society for Ethical Culture lecture

 

628.  You have effectively immunised yourself against the power of human conversation.  (Religion & Conversation & Criticism)  ibid.

 

 

50,185.  All I’m arguing for really is that we should have a conversation where the best ideas really thrive, where there’s no taboo against criticizing bad ideas, and where everyone who shows up, in order to get their ideas entertained, has to meet some obvious burdens of intellectual rigor and self-criticism and honesty – and when people fail to do that, we are free to stop listening to them.  What religion has had up until this moment is a different set of rules that apply only to it, which is you have to respect my religious certainty even though I’m telling you I arrived at it irrationally.  (Criticism & Religion)  Sam Harris

 

 

792.  There are no sacred truths.  All assumptions must be critically examined.  Arguments from authority are worthless.  (Truth & Criticism & Argument & Authority)  Professor Carl Sagan & Ann Druyan, Cosmos: Who Speaks for Earth? 1979

 

 

2,474.  If you take a look at science in its everyday function, of course you find that scientists run the gamut of human emotions and personalities and character and so on.  But there’s one thing that is really striking to the outsider, and that is the gauntlet of criticism that is considered acceptable or even desirable.  The poor graduate student at his or her Phd oral exam is subjected to a withering crossfire of questions that sometimes seem hostile or contemptuous; this from the professors who have the candidate’s future in their grasp.  The students naturally are nervous; who wouldn’t be?  True, they’ve prepared for it for years.  But they understand that at that critical moment they really have to be able to answer questions.  So in preparing to defend their theses, they must anticipate questions; they have to think, ‘Where in my thesis is there a weakness that someone else might find? – because I sure better find it before they do, because if they find it and I'm not prepared, I’m in deep trouble.’  (Science & Criticism & Scepticism & Student & Exam)  Carl Sagan, ‘Wonder and Skepticism’ Skeptical Inquirer 19:1 1995

 

 

2,293.  The ultimate authority must always rest with the individual’s own reason and critical analysis.  (Reason & Authority & Individual & Criticism)  Dalai Lama

 

 

2,380.  We do not believe any group of men adequate enough or wise enough to operate without scrutiny or without criticism.  (Science & Wisdom & Criticism & Group)  J Robert Oppenheimer 

 

 

2,406.  Science must begin with myths, and with the criticism of myths.  (Science & Myth & Criticism)  Karl Popper, Conjectures and Refutations

 

 

3,829.  But Grissom wasn’t the only Apollo critic to meet with a suspicious and untimely death.  Thomas Ronald Baron was a safety-inspector during Apollo 1’s construction.  After the fire, Baron testified before Congress that the Apollo program was in such disarray that the United States would never make it to the moon.  He claimed his opinions made him a target.  As part of his testimony, Baron submitted a five-hundred page report detailing his findings.  Then exactly one week after he testified, Baron’s car was struck by a train.  Baron, his wife and stepdaughter, were killed instantly.  Baron’s report mysteriously disappeared.  And to this day it has never been found.  But the Apollo program continued, and so did the string of untimely deaths.  Between 1964 and 1967 a total of ten astronauts lost their lives in freak accidents.  These deaths accounted for an astonishing 15% of NASA’s astronaut core.  Could the government had gone this far to pull off an elaborate hoax?  (Moon & Criticism)  Conspiracy Theory: Moon Landing Hoax aka Did We Land on the Moon?

 

 

4,888.  Until very recently, feminist criticism has not had a theoretical basis; it has been an empirical orphan in the theoretical storm.  (Feminism & Criticism)  Elaine Showalter, Feminist Criticism in the Wilderness

 

 

4,894.  In contrast to angry or loving fixation on male literature, the program of gynocritics is to construct a female framework for the analysis of women’s literature, to develop new models based on the study of female experience, rather than to adapt male models and theories.  Gynocritics begins at the point when we free ourselves from the linear absolutes of male literary history, stop trying to fit women between the lines of the male tradition, and focus instead on the newly visible world of female culture.  (Feminism & Criticism)  Elaine Showalter, Toward a Feminist Poetics

 

 

4,889.  Feminist critics seem particularly reluctant to define themselves to the uninitiated.  There is a sense in which our sisterhood has be-come too powerful; as a school, our belief in ourself is so potent that we decline communication with the networks of power and respectability we say we want to change.  (Feminism & Criticism)  Nina Auerbach, Feminist Criticism Reviewed

 

 

5,345.  Thought that is silenced is always rebellious.  Majorities of course are often mistaken.  This is why the silencing of minorities is necessarily dangerous.  Criticism and dissent are the indispensable antidote to major delusions.  (Civil Liberties & Majority & Minority & Criticism & Dissent)  Alan Barth

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