BETRAYERS OF THE TRUTH by William & Nicholas Wade Broad


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Science reporters Broad and Wade are experts in the field of scientific fraud and duplicity. Both have written memorable accounts of recent scandals in Science and New Scientist. Both feel compelled to dispel the notion that science is a disinterested search for truth conducted by the high-minded who think only reasonably and logically, Here, they document ancient and contemporary intellectual crimes that range from figure-fudging by Newton and Mendel to the totally fraudulent data published by Cyril Burr and other, more recent cases involving falsified evidence and sham careers, as well as instances of lab chiefs taking credit (and even the Nobel prize) for work done by staff. Among those featured is the young Cornell researcher who rocked the biomedical world not long ago with a brilliant theory--and phony evidence--of cancer causation. The cases themselves make fascinating reading; and anyone familiar with Wade's account of the shameful competition between Roger Guillemin and Andrew Schally (The Nobel Duel, 1981) will again find the science comprehensible, the quotes juicy, the personalities sharply drawn. Also in evidence, though, is a good deal of missionary zeal. So eager are Broad and Wade to discredit the myth of the noble scientist and the Glorious Method that they overstate the case. The situation in tote is not quite so grievous as the authors make out. But that does not detract from the intrinsic interest of the subject or the polish of the accounts.

Pub Date: Jan. 10th, 1982
Publisher: Simon & Schuster