The Provenance of Ideas: Constructing a Scientific Bibliography

  • Dempsey R
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Abstract

In preliterate times, information was transmitted orally from person to person. The usefulness of this information relied on the accuracy and completeness of its transmission. The way to verify the quality of the material (and therefore its usefulness) was to obtain it from a speaker or speakers whose accuracy was personally known to the listener or whose reliability was vouched for by other knowledgeable sources. When published scientific and medical journals came into being, similar safeguards were adopted, summarized in the form of the bibliography. The role of the journal is to provide an environment for the dissemination of ideas while giving the reader reasonable assurance that the material is genuine, correct, and uninfluenced by the author's financial interests. The purpose of the scientific journal bibliography is to document the author s sources of information while establishing its validity and trustworthiness to the reader

Author-supplied keywords

  • Bibliography
  • Citation
  • Reference

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Authors

  • Richard Dempsey

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