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2016, Cilt 6, Sayı 1, Sayfa(lar) 050-060
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DOI: 10.5961/jhes.2016.142
Astrology Pseudoscience and a Discussion About Its Threats to Society
Tevfik UYAR
İstanbul Kültür University, Institute of Social Sciences, İstanbul, Turkey
Keywords: Astrology, Demarcation problem, Pseudoscience

Astrology, a pseudoscience, is highly popular in Turkey. Astrologers, who are its practitioners, produce discourses in the scientific field at the media and at their own platforms. Furthermore, it is possible to find some instances of astrology related activities in Turkish universities. In this article, demarcation of science from pseudoscience and the pseudoscientific status of astrology were discussed in a first place. Next, threats of astrological discourse within economic, educational and medical fields and their threats to society were expressed with some examples. Instances of the astrological activities within higher education institutions, such as an astrology-based master degree thesis, the astrology certificate programs, and an astrology column in an official medical school magazine were evaluated, and it was put forward that they contributed to increase the level of threat and it was also claimed that the existence of astrological activities in the universities contradicts the main purpose and principles of the higher education. In conclusion, some regulatory actions like the implementation of the scientific literacy and demarcation problem to each level of educational curriculum, a general policy for excluding the pseudoscience from higher education institutions and a recommended health warning at the top of the astrology were suggested.

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