In response, Sokal said that their response illustrated the problem he highlighted.
was a scholarly publishing hoax perpetrated by Alan Sokal, a physics professor at New York University and University College London.
In 1996, Sokal submitted an article to Social Text, an academic journal of postmodern cultural studies.
It proposed that quantum gravity is a social and linguistic construct.
At that time, the journal did not practice academic peer review and it did not submit the article for outside expert review by a physicist. radio program All Things Considered, Sokal said he was inspired to submit the bogus article after reading Higher Superstition (1994), in which authors Paul R.
In the May 1996 issue of Lingua Franca, in the article "A Physicist Experiments With Cultural Studies", Sokal revealed that "Transgressing the Boundaries" was a hoax and concluded that Social Text "felt comfortable publishing an article on quantum physics without bothering to consult anyone knowledgeable in the subject" because of its ideological proclivities and editorial bias.
In their defense, the Social Text editors said they believed that "Transgressing the Boundaries" "was the earnest attempt of a professional scientist to seek some kind of affirmation from postmodern philosophy for developments in his field" and that "its status as parody does not alter, substantially, our interest in the piece, itself, as a symptomatic document".What would matter would be ideologic obsequiousness, fawning references to deconstructionist writers, and sufficient quantities of the appropriate jargon.Writing after the article was published and the hoax revealed, he stated: The results of my little experiment demonstrate, at the very least, that some fashionable sectors of the American academic Left have been getting intellectually lazy.Later, after Sokal's self-exposure of his pseudoscientific hoax article in the journal Lingua Franca, the Social Text editors said in a published essay that they had requested editorial changes that Sokal refused to make, Nonetheless, despite subsequently designating the physicist as having been a "difficult, uncooperative author", and noting that such writers were "well known to journal editors", Social Text published the article in acknowledgment of the author's credentials in the May 1996 Spring/Summer "Science Wars" issue.The editors did not seek peer review of the article by physicists or otherwise; they later defended this decision on the basis that Social Text was a journal for open intellectual inquiry and the article was not offered as a contribution to the physics discipline.The submission was an experiment to test the journal's intellectual rigor and, specifically, to investigate whether "a leading North American journal of cultural studies – whose editorial collective includes such luminaries as Fredric Jameson and Andrew Ross – [would] publish an article liberally salted with nonsense if (a) it sounded good and (b) it flattered the editors' ideological preconceptions".