The Fourth Tool of Manipulation: Reputation


The Nobel Prize disease; the number of times winners of the Nobel Prize have used their reputations to promote pseudoscience has become so many that it has its own name, and among them is Pierre Curie.

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, a psychic medium by the name of Eusapia Palladino began to gain popularity in England and in 1895 she was invited to The Society for Psychical Research. At the time, the idea of the psychic phenomenon was new and very serious research was being done to see if it could be validated.


It was found that Paladino was using sleight of hand tricks to fool participants. She had a rubber bag with air into that she used to move curtains and other light objects. She would tie hair strings to objects to move them, and often used hand-holding circles during her sessions. During this hand-holding moment, she would guide the hands of the person on her left and right together, so that they held each other's hand, and no one was holding hers, thus allowing to her perform all sorts of illusion all while people thought she couldn’t move her hands.

After this, Palladino was banned from the Society for Psychical Research as a fraud. But it didn’t end her career. When world-famous Nobel Prize winner Pierre Curie became a fan of hers, Palladino was once again accepted.

Curie’s reputation as a man of science allowed Palladio to pedal her lies for decades more. After all if he, who knew so much about the importance of evidence in science and truth, believed her, she had to genuine, right?