Circular Reasoning: The Rise of Flat Earth Belief

Over the past few years, I’ve given almost 100 free talks to skeptics in the pub groups, humanists, students, conferences, degree courses and comedy festivals – including my talks:

  • Adventures in pseudoscience – a fun journey through almost a decade of my skeptical activism and investigations
  • Diluting NHS Homeopathy until it’s just a memory – a look at Good Thinking’s campaign to investigate and challenge NHS funding for homeopathy
  • Bad PR – how and why the media fell to publishing PR pieces as news, and why it matters.

My new talk, covering my investigations into the Flat Earth movement, is also now available. If you’d like me to talk for your Skeptics in the Pub, university group, humanist group or other, please get in touch and I’ll be happy to come speak for you. You can find dates of my upcoming talks below, and to arrange a talk in your area simply email marsh@goodthinkingsociety.org.

Circular Reasoning: The Rise of Flat Earth Belief

In 2013, when Michael Marshall first interviewed the Vice President of the Flat Earth society for his show Be Reasonable, people could scarcely believe that anyone could genuinely think the Earth was flat. Five years later, Flat Earth belief has gone mainstream, spawning thousands of hours of YouTube videos, gaining widespread international media coverage, and attracting countless followers. How did we get here?

In this talk, Marshall will talk through his experiences of the Flat Earth movement, take a look at the leaders and some of their reasoning, and report back from the weekend he spent at the UK’s first ever Flat Earth convention.

Michael Marshall is the Project Director of the Good Thinking Society and the Vice President of the Merseyside Skeptics Society. He regularly speaks with proponents of pseudoscience for the Be Reasonable podcast.

His work has seen him organising international homeopathy protests, going undercover to expose psychics and quack medics, and co-founding the popular QED conference. He has written for the Guardian, The Times and New Statesman.

Requirements: projector, screen.

Upcoming dates:

Previous talks:

  1. Leicester Secular Society – March 31st, 2019
  2. Brighton Skeptics in the Pub – March 28th, 2019
  3. Humanists UK – March 28th, 2019
  4. Exeter University Humanists – March 19th, 2019
  5. Cambridge Science Festival – March 12th, 2019
  6. University of Sunderland (PR/Journalism lecture) – March 12th, 2019
  7. Coventry Skeptics in the Pub – February 20th, 2019
  8. Cardiff Humanists – February 11th, 2019
  9. Leicester Skeptics in the Pub – December 18th, 2018
  10. Bournemouth Skeptics in the Pub – December 13th, 2018
  11. Bournemouth University (PR/Journalism lecture) – December 13th, 2018
  12. Glasgow Skeptics in the Pub – November 12th, 2018
  13. Barnsley Skeptics in the Pub – November 1st, 2018
  14. Maidstone Skeptics in the Pub – October 29th, 2018
  15. QED conference, Manchester – October 13th-14th, 2018
  16. York Skeptics in the Pub – September 24th, 2018
  17. Birmingham Skeptics in the Pub – September 12th, 2018
  18. Teeside Skeptics in the Pub- September 6th, 2018
  19. Camp Quest UK – August 21st, 2018
  20. Gravesend Skeptics in the Pub- August 15th, 2018
  21. NECSS, New York, USA – 13th July 2018
  22. Humanist Students Southampton – 5th March 2018
  23. Stellenbosch University, South Africa – 19th November 2017
  24. Newcastle Skeptics in the Pub – 13th September 2017
  25. Edinburgh Festival – Skeptics on the Fringe – 17th August 2017
  26. IHEYO annual conference, London – 4th August 2017
  27. Stoke Skeptics in the Pub – 10th May 2017
  28. Horsham Skeptics in the Pub – 24th April 2017
  29. High Wycombe Skeptics in the Pub – 19th April 2017
  30. Glasgow Skeptics in the Pub – 27th March 2017
  31. Bangor Science Cafe – 18th January 2017
  32. Sydney Skeptics in the Pub – 29 November 2016
  33. Australian Skeptics National Convention, Melbourne – 25th November 2016
  34. Greenwich Skeptics in the Pub – 2nd November 2016
  35. QED 2016 – Manchester – 14th-16th October 2016
  36. Brighton Skeptics in the Cafe – 27th September 2016
  37. Norwich Skeptics in the Pub – 13th September 2016
  38. Essex Skeptics in the Pub – 14th September 2016
  39. LIDo PhD Retreat – High Wycombe – 8th September 2016
  40. Edinburgh Festival – Skeptics on the Fringe – 10th August 2016
  41. Leicester Skeptics in the Pub – 19th July 2016
  42. Portsmouth Skeptics in the Pub – 14th July 2016
  43. Teesside Skeptics in the Pub – 7th July 2016
  44. Southport Philosophy in the Pub – 6th June 2016
  45. Bedford Skeptics in the Pub – 21st April 2016
  46. Sheffield Skeptics in the Pub – 29th February 2016
  47. Reading Skeptics in the Pub – 15th February 2016
  48. Brighton Humanists – 3rd February 2016
  49. Cork Skeptics in the Pub – 29th January 2016
  50. Dublin Skeptics in the Pub – 28th January 2016
  51. Eastbourne Skeptics in the Pub – 27th January 2016
  52. CFI UK: Science in the Media, Conway Hall, London – 12th December 2015
  53. Durham University Humanists – 25th November 2015
  54. Leeds Skeptics in the Pub – 24th November 2015
  55. High Wycombe Skeptics in the Pub – 18th November 2015
  56. Exeter Humanists – 14th November 2015
  57. Cardiff Skeptics in the Pub – 17th November 2015
  58. Bristol Skeptics in the Pub – 28th October 2015
  59. Liverpool Skeptics in the Pub – 15th October 2015
  60. Milton Keynes Skeptics in the Pub – 14th October 2015
  61. York Skeptics in the Pub – 24th August 2015
  62. Malmo Skeptics in the Pub, Sweden – 21st September 2015
  63. Cambridge Skeptics in the Pub – 28th July 2015
  64. Oxford Skeptics in the Pub – 22nd July 2015
  65. Gravesend Skeptics in the Pub – 15th July 2015
  66. Bournemouth Skeptics in the Pub – 8th July 2015
  67. Nottingham Skeptics in the Pub – 7th July 2015
  68. QED, Manchester – 24th-26th April 2015 (new talk)
  69. Liverpool SciBar – 7th April 2015
  70. Cheltenham Skeptics in the Pub – 31th March 2015
  71. Northern Ireland Science Festival, Belfast – 24th February 2015
  72. Dublin Skeptics in the Pub – 6th February 2015
  73. Cork Skeptics in the Pub – 5th February 2015
  74. Greenwich Skeptics in the Pub – 4th February 2015
  75. Glasgow Skeptics in the Pub – 12th January 2015
  76. Brisbane, AUS – 1st December 2014
  77. Australian Skeptics National Convention, Sydney, AUS – 29th-30th November 2014
  78. Liverpool Skeptics in the Pub – 20th November 2014
  79. Horsham Skeptics in the Pub – 13th November 2014
  80. Milton Keynes Skeptics in the Pub – 11th November 2014
  81. Southport Philosophy in the Pub – 3rd November 2014
  82. Guildford Skeptics in the Pub – 24th September 2014
  83. Coventry Skeptics in the Pub – 17th September 2014
  84. Bournemouth Skeptics in the Pub – 10th September 2014
  85. Barnsley Skeptics in the Pub – 4th September 2014
  86. Winchester Skeptics in the Pub – 28th August 2014
  87. Cambridge Skeptics in the Pub – 27th August 2014
  88. Edinburgh Skeptics on the Fringe – 15th August 2014
  89. Nine Worlds Geekfest, London – 10th August 2014
  90. Nottingham Skeptics in the Pub – 5th August 2014
  91. Lincoln Skeptics in the Pub – 4th August 2014
  92. Greater Manchester Skeptics in the Pub – 10th July 2014
  93. Newcastle Skeptics in the Pub – 9th July 2014
  94. Stoke Skeptics in the Pub – 2nd July 2014
  95. Bristol Skeptics in the Pub – 25th June 2014
  96. York Skeptics in the Pub – 23rd June 2014
  97. Leicester Skeptics in the Pub – 17th June 2014
  98. Birmingham Skeptics in the Pub – 11th June 2014
  99. Brighton Skeptics in the Pub – 10th June 2014
  100. Ealing Skeptics in the Pub – 12th May 2014
  101. Oxford Skeptics in the Pub – 8th May 2014
  102. University of Liverpool Humanists – 29th April 2014
  103. Sheffield Skeptics in the Pub – 28th April 2014
  104. Exeter Skeptics in the Pub – 23rd April 2014
  105. Plymouth Humanists – 22nd April 2014
  106. Teeside Skeptics in the Pub – 3rd April 2014