A must see science documentary

15 Nov

For years I have lamented the unavailability of the Frontline documentary Prisoners of Silence . I was lucky enough to have a copy of the video and have shown it to hundreds of students.

The subject of the documentary is facilitated communication, a technique that purports to allow nonverbal individuals with serious disabilities such as autism to communicate. However, the documentary is about much more. First, it is about the strength of the scientific method for evaluating extra-ordinary claims. Second, it is about how people often ignore strong evidence to embrace a comforting falsehood. Finally, it shows how false beliefs, how ever well intentioned, can have disastrous consequences.

The video is now available on Youtube.

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