Bold Scientists

Bold Scientists

Dispatches from the Battle for Honest Science

By Michael Riordon


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As governments and corporations scramble to pull the plug on research that proves that they are poisoning our planet and rush to muzzle the scientists who dare to share their disturbing data, it seems the powerful have declared a war on science.

Michael Riordon asks deep questions of bold scientists who defy the status quo including: an Indigenous biologist who integrates traditional knowledge and a trickster’s wit; an engineering professor who exposes the myths and dangers of fracking; a forensic geneticist who traces children stolen by the military in El Salvador; a sociologist who investigates the lure and threat of mass surveillance; a radical psychologist who confronts psychiatry’s dangerous power; and a young marine biologist who risks her career to defend science and democracy.

Who controls science and at what cost to the earth and its inhabitants? Can we change? This is unspun science for dangerous times.

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A gripping tale of heroic scientists working in the public interest despite powerful opposition. At once, both tremendously hopeful and profoundly disturbing. The world needs more bold authors like Michael Riordon.

– Thomas Duck, Associate Professor, Department of Physics and Atmospheric Science, Dalhousie University

Silence is consent, my fellow scientists. Riordon’s profiles in courage encourage us to take our data and our voices into the gladiator’s arena and engage in the great moral and political battles of our time. As Bold Scientists so clearly shows, it’s where we belong.

– Sandra Steingraber, Ph.D., author of Living Downstream: An Ecologist’s Personal Investigation of Cancer and the Environment; co-founder, Concerned Health Professionals of New York


In the Beginning
Chapter 1 When the River Roared: First Nations, a long view
Chapter 2 Digging Thistles: A Post-oil Farm
Chapter 3 A Dialogue with the World: Biology, from the ground up
Chapter 4 Blood on My Hands: In the garden, life and death
Chapter 5 Stolen Children: Genes and human rights
Chapter 6 The Cloud: Watching Big Brother
Chapter 7 ODD: Psychology and power
Chapter 8 Awe: The wisdom of a spider web
Chapter 9 Pesky Data: Under lakes, dark truths
Chapter 10 The Unsolved Problem: Shattering the earth
Chapter 11 When the Lights Go Out: Awakening in an ice storm
Chapter 12 No Time for Cowardice: The fight for science and democracy