Erin's Reviews > The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark

The Demon-Haunted World by Carl Sagan
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Jul 11, 2012

did not like it

I hesitated to mark this as "Read" because I couldn't actually get through the whole thing. I was SO excited to read this book: I was under the impression that Sagan systematically explained in reasonable and scientific terms some of the myths and phenomena present in Western culture, and I thought it would be interesting to see how these things came about.
That's not what it is. From the first about 100 pages, I gather that a) Sagan is reeeaaallly in love with science, b) he's not unconvinced that there are aliens out there and c) he has a grudge against nonscientific discussion of space, astronomy, aliens, and other related things because he feels it ought to be investigated properly, and fears that wild claims of UFOs turn it all into some silly game. It would be fine if UFOs and aliens were one phenomenon he was going to debunk - or, if not debunk, at least caution against believing without further scientific proof - but that is the whole book. Sometimes he veers a little bit toward some other interesting phenomenon or belief...but it always veers back to aliens. In addition, his veneration of science and the scientific process are to be applauded and imitated, but it gets tiring to hear in every single chapter about how great science is. It's tiresome. Anyone reading that book already respects science; no paranormal who doesn't understand the concept of experimental proof is going to pick up a book about how experimental proof is the only way to know something. Sagan may be a great scientist, but he's a terrible writer.
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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Libardo Muñoz 1 star? really?


Carlos Pohle So first you said that you didn't finish the book, and then: "It would be fine if UFOs and aliens were one phenomenon he was going to debunk - or, if not debunk, at least caution against believing without further scientific proof - but that is the whole book."

If you had finished the book you would have seen him debunking cases of UFOs, crop circles etc.

If you had continued reading, you may just have found what you said wasn't there. Give it another try ;)


Carlos Pohle So first you said that you didn't finish the book, and then: "It would be fine if UFOs and aliens were one phenomenon he was going to debunk - or, if not debunk, at least caution against believing without further scientific proof - but that is the whole book."

If you had finished the book you would have seen him debunking cases of UFOs, crop circles etc.

If you had continued reading, you may just have found what you said wasn't there. Give it another try ;)


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