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August 9, 1965

Convincing the World

JAMA. 1965;193(6):545. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03090060135019

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To the Editor:—  In your editorial (JAMA192:778 [May 31] 1965) you affirm that "the important investigator is the one who convinces the world."Certainly the historian occasionally finds that a sure determination of prior claims of discovery and invention is virtually impossible. Despite this difficulty, one should not erase the innovator from our histories nor transfer our admiration for his achievement to the publicist, if not plagiarist, "who convinces the world." Following your "more pragmatic approach," Darwin would yield his laurels to Huxley, Auenbrugger to Corvisart, Mendel to DeVries, Correns, Tschernak, and we should rewrite our history.That this "pragmatic approach" does actually prevail we can see in the present proliferation of the medical press, in which one can detect a myriad of authors rewriting the self-same paper in ingenious permutations and combinations, and all to bring conviction to the world.

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