[commentary] They Lied to Us About Tobacco and Milk


[commentary] They Lied to Us About Tobacco and Milk

July 2016

Foucault floats around the high castles of academia. It’s nice when he comes back down to real life.

Power/Knowledge is clearly evident in the history of the milk and tobacco industry in America.

Science told us that tobacco was not linked to cancer.

Science told us that milk was healthy for adults and good for our bones.

Both these claims have been, and are being contradicted by science in the year 2016.

The lesson to be learned from this repeating history of political interests influencing science, is not withdrawal and cynicism. The point is not to reject and hold all scientific studies immediately suspect. The point is that we must always retain a certain capacity to question institutions despite their immense symbolic capital. . All claims are political and should be thoroughly treated as such until proven otherwise. Science has been elevated to the status of an exterior truth. Foucault simply reminds us that this image is a romantic one. We must accept the complex realities of science, how it is pure yet also adulterated.