Television "science" and "history" channels, as well as bookstore shelves, are riddled with works claiming the discovery of lost Atlantis, attributing monuments to the lost tribe of Israel, explaining cultural developments as the result of contact with aliens, and loosely documenting routine sightings of Yetis, Bigfoots, Skinwalkers and Swamp Apes. Indeed, these have now become common entertainment themes in popular culture. But when entertainment themes become sources of knowledge they can also be dangerous — dangerous because they provide explanations of the world around us that pose as seemingly scientific knowledge.

We live in a country where some 40 percent of the population does not accept the theory of human evolution. Concurrently, the state of Ohio has seen a rise in "Bigfoot" sightings that makes us the fifth "squatchiest" state in the nation. 

Join Professor Bruce Hardy to examine how we know about the world around us and what passes for knowledge of a particular type. In the process, we will explore scientific literacy, pseudoscientific beliefs, anthropology’s responses to such beliefs and their effects on our culture.

Session topics will include:

  • Week 1: Epistemology, Flat Earthers, Aquatic Apes
  • Week 2: Bigfoot!
  • Week 3: Ancient Aliens and the Solutrean Hypothesis
  • Week 4: UFOs, Racism, Vaccines

Join us Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET beginning April 6.

Kenyon is committed to creating inclusive events. This event will feature optional live streamed captions. Please contact us to discuss other access considerations needed to participate fully in this event.