I Am Not Persuaded

Reviewed: The Unpersuadables: Adventures with the Enemies of Science by Will Storr

We join British journalist and photographer Will Storr for the first time in the hot Australian town of Devil, where the community hall is dense with believers. They are packed in to hear the famous John Mackay, devout creationist and religious leader, give his famous talk debunking evolution. We witness a convincing scene of a prophesying leader, slamming his hands on the podium, attempting to present counter-arguments for a scientific theory widely accepted by society, but there is something off-putting in the way Storr describes the scene — with “sweating air” and sentences that “unfurl slowly” out of Mackay’s mouth. This prose feels coded, like I can already sense Storr “otherizing” the subjects of his reportage.

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