Science Strikes Again.
September 23, 2010 12:30 PM   Subscribe

The Best American Science Writing has a diverse set of offerings for this year, including five articles already featured here on the blue. Starting off with Benedict Carey - Surgery for Mental Ills Offers Both Hope and Risk (The New York Times)

Continuing with

Jonah Lehrer - The Truth About Grit (The Boston Globe)
Steven Pinker - My Genome, My Self (New York Times)
Pam Belluck - Test Subjects Who Call the Scientist Mom or Dad (The New York Times)
Julia Scott - Pesticides Indicted in Bee Deaths (Salon)
Rivka Galchen - Disaster Aversion (Harper's Magazine)
Kathleen McAuliffe - Are We Still Evolving? (Discover)
Susan Milius - A Most Private Evolution (Science News)
Chris Mooney and Sheril Kirshenbaum - Unpopular Science (The Nation)
Steven Weinberg - The Missions of Astronomy (The New York Review of Books)
Tony Freeth - Decoding an Ancient Computer (Scientific American)
Cornelia Dean - So Much to Learn About the Oceans from Sand (New York Times)

New Yorker, for subscribers:

Larissa MacFarquhar - The Kindest Cut (The New Yorker)
Elizabeth Kolbert - The Sixth Extinction (The New Yorker)

Science Magazine (for subscribers only)

Erik Stokstad - The Famine Fighter's Last Battle (Science)
Daniel M. Wegner - How to Think, Say, or Do Precisely the Worst Thing for Any Occasion (Science)
Jennifer Couzin-Frankel - Friendship as a Health Factor (Science) (could not find a link)

Already featured on the blue:

Steve Silberman - The Placebo Problem (Wired)
David Dobbs - The Orchid Children (The Atlantic)
Sheri Fink - The Deadly Choices at Memorial (The New York Times Magazine)
Amy Wallace - An Epidemic of Fear (Wired)
Michael Specter - A Life of Its Own (The New Yorker)
posted by dances_with_sneetches (10 comments total) 67 users marked this as a favorite
Great post. I've taken to taking plain printed versions of articles like this to long meetings where my attendance is required but my attention is not. It's really made me look forward to things I previously dreaded.
posted by OmieWise at 1:18 PM on September 23, 2010

Steve Silberman, author of the Wired placebo article, is Metafilter's own digaman. Great article; I assigned it as recommended reading to my summer bioethics class.
posted by painquale at 1:21 PM on September 23, 2010 [2 favorites]

Thanks so much for this post. I missed a lot of these articles when they were published.
posted by bearwife at 1:36 PM on September 23, 2010

I love this series and look forward to it every year.
posted by matildaben at 4:06 PM on September 23, 2010

I've been (very slowly) indexing the other best science writing series, they both started in 2000. When I'm done that (?) I might start in on the other series. Great stuff.

For the pay-wall articles, find a unique sentence in the article, Google it (in quotes), you can often find [illicit] copies that someone has cut and pasted into a blog or forum or syllabus or wherever.
posted by stbalbach at 4:33 PM on September 23, 2010 [3 favorites]

Wow, thanks so much for putting this together!
posted by Wordwoman at 8:34 PM on September 23, 2010

Wow, OmieWise, upon reading that comment I was immediately called to a three hour meeting in a language I didn't understand. I printed out Unpopular Science and read it several times, and it really is a different experience taking time to digest an article after you read it. I feel like I really grasp the issue at hand now.
posted by shii at 1:07 AM on September 24, 2010

"An inherent problem in most research is that innovation is driven by groups that believe in their method, thus introducing bias that is almost impossible to avoid,” Dr. Christian Ruck, the lead author of the paper, wrote in an e-mail message. (from "Surgery for Mental Ills")

That's both completely obvious and truly insightful, and applicable to most (all?) areas of research. Thanks, great post.
posted by alasdair at 2:21 AM on September 24, 2010

Here's the link for subscribers to the Friendship as a Health Factor article:
posted by kbuxton at 1:24 PM on September 24, 2010

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