Betrayers of the Truth

Betrayers of the Truth

3.89 (46 ratings by Goodreads)
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Product details

  • Paperback | 256 pages
  • 129.54 x 193.04 x 17.78mm | 226.8g
  • Oxford University Press
  • Oxford Paperbacks
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • forms transparencies
  • 0192818899
  • 9780192818898

Review Text

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, blaming philosophers, sociologists, and scientists themselves for perpetrating the myth. Yet these are the very persons who, in many instances, have put science in its social context, taken note of master-disciple relationships at a few elite schools, recognized the role played by chance, the importance of hunches, and so on. 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. (Kirkus Reviews)show more

Rating details

46 ratings
3.89 out of 5 stars
5 17% (8)
4 57% (26)
3 24% (11)
2 2% (1)
1 0% (0)
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