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September 15, 1934


Author Affiliations

Springfield, Mass.

JAMA. 1934;103(11):855. doi:10.1001/jama.1934.02750370059024

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To the Editor:—  Driven by a constant bombardment of ridiculous references by patients to library books, I undertook to investigate the popular medical volumes on the shelves at the Springfield Public Library. The result of the investigation was astounding. Most of the books were either so antiquated as to beg retirement or else bore such ignorant, preposterous or downright quack authorship as to make one exclaim with horror. The biggest shock, however, came when in response to a call for assistance, one of the librarians suggested the late Alfred McCann's "The Science of Eating" as a very good book on diets. That McCann (see The Journal, June 20, 1925, and March 15, 1930) should have created such a piece of quackery is only natural, but that a city library would circularize and even recommend it to its citizenry was rather hard to understand.An effort to present this unsatisfactory state

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