Nautilus

How Uncertainty Can Help Fight Science Denialism

Why is a statement like “vaccines cause autism” persuasive or not? Each side of the issue will no doubt claim some support, but if we know anything about psychology, it’s that facts don’t always settle an argument. Those who claim a link between vaccines and autism—without any evidence to support this claim—are just as certain as those who discredit it.

Communication researchers have been tackling this question for decades. How can two people look at the same information and come to radically different conclusions? How can a single retracted study by a disgraced and dismissed doctor be garbage some and gospel for others

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