edited by George H. Scherr and Richard Liebmann-Smith, 195 pp, with illus, paper $9.95, New York, Workman Publishing Co Inc; Chicago Heights, IL 60411 (PO Box 234), Journal of Irreproducible Results Inc, 1983.
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Mark Twain created a comic style by constructing propositions such as: "Animals talk to each other, of course. There can be no question about that; but I suppose there are very few people who can understand them." By concocting similar bogus but entertaining syllogisms, scientists have filled the pages of The Journal of Irreproducible Results, a journal of scientific humor that is unconstrained both by reality and good taste. In many ways it is like Mad magazine gone to graduate school. This book brings together selected articles.
The articles are written according to the formats of scholarly scientific journals, and the book is an expression of the scientific mind at play. But, in addition to the delightful and creative side of the scientific mind, an unattractive and immature side also emerges. Many of the articles have overtones of misogyny, sadism toward graduate students, cruelty to animals, and jealousy of physicians.
Grouse LD. The Best of the Journal of Irreproducible Results: 'Improbable Investigations and Unfounded Findings,'. JAMA. 1985;253(10):1465. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03350340119034