Views & Reviews Medical Classics

Galileo’s Revenge: Junk Science in the Courtroom

BMJ 2011; 343 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.d5316 (Published 31 August 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;343:d5316
  1. Barry Kay, emeritus professor, allergy and immunology, Imperial College, London
  1. a.b.kay{at}imperial.ac.uk

This book is about bad science, particularly bad medical science in the courtroom. It contrasts good science—the science of publication, replication, verification, consensus, and peer review—with so called junk science: identified by lack of rigour, power to stir up fear, bamboozlement, and misguided certitude. The book documents landmark legal cases in which manipulative, charismatic lawyers have trampled on scientific evidence, championed the maverick, and won huge sums of money in compensation despite flawed evidence.

Examples include a successful claim resulting …

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