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Man and His Future. A Ciba Foundation Volume

Marjorie C. Meehan, MD
JAMA. 1964;187(2):159. doi:10.1001/jama.1964.03060150083046.
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Scientists, who normally are concerned with verifiable facts and their objective interpretation, undoubtedly wish sometimes to be free to speculate and to express subjective opinions. The Ciba Foundation gave such an opportunity to 27 scientists, inviting them to a symposium to discuss the future of man. This book contains 16 prepared papers and skillfully edited material of seven discussion periods.

Striking differences of opinion were evident. Colin Clark presented an optimistic picture of agricultural productivity in relation to population. He suggested that, with improved methods of farming and food processing, the earth could support 45,000 million people on a diet comparable to the present North American average. Several discussants raised objections, and possibilities of reproduction control were discussed by Pincus and others. That the population explosion might be less threatening than the growth of science and technology was mentioned by J. de S. Price.

Szent-Györgyi professed to be frightened by


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