Category: Music

Medical Analogies in the Social Sciences

Andrew Gelman writes:

Social scientists who use medical analogies to explain causal inference are, I think, implicitly trying to borrow some of the scientific and cultural authority of that field for [their] own purposes.

Social scientists are often tempted to illustrate their ideas with examples from medical research. When it comes to medicine, though, we are, with rare exceptions, at best ignorant laypersons (in my case, not even reaching that level), and it is my impression that by reaching for medical analogies we are implicitly trying to borrow some of the scientific and cultural authority of that field for our own purposes. Evidence-based medicine is the subject of a large literature of its own.

Gelman’s post is a contender for the Post with the Longest Title 2012 award (the title of the post is indeed “Social scientists who use medical analogies to explain causal inference are, I think, implicitly trying to borrow some of the scientific and cultural authority of that field for our own purposes.”)

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I wonder if he got his inspiration from the Red Sparowes, whose song titles are known for being long (“the great leap forward poured down upon us one day like a mighty storm, suddenly and furiously blinding our senses,” off of their album Every Red Heart Shines Toward the Red Sun.)

Friday Afternoon Musical Interlude

“Improvisation N°1,” by Bryan Baker, Bob van Luijt, and Sebastiaan Cornelissen:

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Their album “011 Amsterdam” can be purchased here from Amazon’s mp3 store.

Bryan Baker is one of the most — if not the most — creative and interesting jazz guitarist around these days. In my view, he is his generation’s equivalent of John Scofield. Along with the complete recordings of Django Reinhardt, his album “This Morning Day” was essentially the soundtrack to the last four months of my research leave in 2010.

 

Friday Afternoon Musical Interlude

Zombies in Durham? That can only be good.

“Professional Hater (Remix) feat. Toon,” by The Real Laww:

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(HT: The incredibly creative and talented @kidethnic, who directed the video and is celebrating his 33rd birthday today.)