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« Martin Luther King, Jr. | Main | Benjamin Disraeli by Adam Kirsch »

January 22, 2009


Glenn Marcus

I am disappointed that the FORWARD included a piece employing an inaccurate internet posting, particularly as that posting puts words into the mouth of Einstein. I suspect the author of the piece above knew it was inaccurate, as it is stated that the internet post had been edited (the original had spelling errors!) but used that post nonethless to illustrate a point. I suspect someone might suggest people know that these internet things are not always true, but that too would be inaccurate. Even some highly educated folks buy into some internet tripe.
In any case, here is the actual quote - "By an application of the theory of relativity to the taste of readers, today in Germany I am called a German man of science, and in England I am represented as a Swiss Jew. If I come to be represented as a bête noire, the descriptions will be reversed, and I shall become a Swiss Jew for the Germans and a German man of science for the English! (To The Times (London), November 28, 1919, quoted in The New Quotable Einstein by Alice Calaprice, 2005, ISBN 0-691-12075-7)

Glenn Marcus

Here is the quote closer to the one in Rick Richman's submission above. Closer, but still not the inaccurate embellishment circulating on the internet:

If my theory of relativity is proven successful, Germany will claim me as a German and France will declare that I am a citizen of the world. Should my theory prove untrue, France will say that I am a German and Germany will declare that I am a Jew. (Address to the French Philosophical Society at the Sorbonne (6 April 1922); French press clipping (7 April 1922) [Einstein Archive 36-378] and Berliner Tageblatt (8 April 1922) [Einstein Archive 79-535])

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When Ivan Boesky or Andrew Fastow or Bernie Madoff committed fraud, almost every article mentioned they were Jewish.

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