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The Fly in the Ointment

flyintheointment Book Cover

Aphrodisiacs, bottled waters, vitamins, plastic wrap, DDT, Alzheimer's, and smoked meat: little escapes Dr. Joe's critical eye. From pesticides and environmental estrogens to lipstick and garlic, Dr. Joe focuses on the science of our everyday world in The Fly in the Ointment. Although proper scientific investigation gives us tremendous advantages, he reminds us that there is often “a fly in the ointment.”  Learn about the benefits of broccoli and the pitfalls of "natural " remedies. Explore the science of Agatha Christie, Harry Potter, and Erin Brockovich, and find out how a chemical error nearly led an unfortunate Patricia Stallings to be found guilty of murdering her son. On the heels of his previous best-sellers, award-winning author Dr. Joe Schwarcz once again demystifies the science that surrounds us with The Fly in the Ointment.


Joe Science

Faculty and Student Reviews

  • "This book is entertaining and engaging.  It will give us a great opportunity to pull our students closer together in shared campus-wide discussions (of DDT and lipstick) and if we are attentive enough and pick up on the ongoing threads in the book, we may be able to use it to teach a more environmentally conscious ethos. However, the greatest opening that the book provides is one into the exciting, beautiful and treacherous terrain of epistemology.  Dare we be open to the seduction of asking how we know the theories in Dr. Schwarcz's book are it?  Do we care that this seduction is for very few among us?" --Melinda Kovács, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Political Science 
  •  "I personally find this book to be fascinating, and informative. Many of the “little things” if you will that he addresses are very relevant to everyday life while others are just absolutely intriguing. I know that any student willing to take the time to read two or three commentaries a day will be able to finish this book in no time and will benefit from the content." --Renae Rowe, Administrative Assistant, Student Success Initiatives 


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