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JAMA 100 Years Ago
April 18, 2012


JAMA. 2012;307(15):1562. doi:10.1001/jama.2012.464

Current Comment

In a recent address before the American Society of Animal Nutrition, Professor Armsby struck a keynote which deserves to be resounded quite apart from the immediate circumstances of the original, he spoke of the wide gap which still exists between the work of the student of the science of nutrition and that of the expert in the art of feeding. This obvious weakness in any broad scheme of scientific pursuits applies with singular aptness to the situation in many domains of the field of medicine. It is, perhaps, the old question of theory versus practice which is here suggested. This controversy, it is safe to say, has long since lost all serious significance—if, indeed, it ever possessed any. The investigator in pure science is, in the long run, as responsible for the advances in practice as is the individual who devotes himself to so-called applied science and arts. As Armsby points out, “both have sought to serve the public and both have done creditable work, but their labors have not always been as mutually helpful as they might have been. The scientific man has been too exclusively scientific and the practical man too exclusively practical and the result has been unfortunate for both.”

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