That would be appropriate for a technical text, but Diamond's book was meant as
an introduction for a lay audience. The scope of what he discusses is too broad
for this kind of approach -- there would simply be too many footnotes. That's why
authors who find themselves in this situation give recommended reading lists so
people can zero in on areas of interest and do further research. Our RS/PH
manuals use footnotes because they are explicitly teaching from the teachings of
an individual. Diamond isn't doing that -- he's painting with a much broader
brush. If you are uncomfortable with his conclusions, check out the recommended
reading and do further reading to see if he's talking through his hat or not.

"John W. Redelfs" wrote:

> At 08:37 PM, Friday, 11/1/02, Marc A. Schindler wrote:
> > > And there isn't even a proper bibliography, just some suggested
> > "additional reading."
> >
> >Define "proper bibliography." John, if you don't like the book, don't
> >finish it.
> >But spare us your suffering.
>
> A proper bibliography is a list of works cited, usually those documented
> with footnotes linking the claims made in the text to the authority upon
> which those claims are made.  Even our RS/PH manuals use footnotes and a
> proper bibliography.  A person doesn't have to be a heavy duty scholar to
> appreciate knowing where an author came up with an assertion. In the
> absence of such documentation, it seems like the author is just making it
> up out of his head.  And since so much of this particular text is obviously
> speculation and conjecture, a few footnotes and a real bibliography would
> have increased the credibility of the work.  Otherwise, it is just a long
> essay on "how I look at things."
>
> Incidentally, a person doesn't have to be a scholar to appreciate a real
> bibliography.  I'm not a scholar, and I appreciate them.  In fact, I think
> that most bibliographies are more interesting than the works built upon them.
>
> John W. Redelfs                       [EMAIL PROTECTED]
> ===========================================
> "The face of a child can say it all, especially the mouth
> part of the face."  --Jack Handy
> ===========================================
> All my opinions are tentative pending further data. --JWR
>
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--
Marc A. Schindler
Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada -- Gateway to the Boreal Parkland

“The first duty of a university is to teach wisdom, not a trade; character, not
technicalities. We want a lot of engineers in the modern world, but we don’t want
a world of engineers.” – Sir Winston Churchill (1950)

Note: This communication represents the informal personal views of the author
solely; its contents do not necessarily reflect those of the author’s employer,
nor those of any organization with which the author may be associated.

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