Gardner, Martin (1924– )
Journalist and writer, born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on October
21, 1914. Gardner graduated from the University of Chicago
(B.A., 1936). His first job was as a reporter for the Tulsa Tribune.
In the 1950s he moved to New York and in 1957 became associated
with Scientific American, for which he has written a column
on mathematical games for many years.
In 1952 Gardner wrote what has become the most famous
and enduring of his many books, In the Name of Science (reprinted
in 1957 as Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science), a skeptical
book dealing with numerous scientific deadends, hoaxes, and
religious groups that made scientific claims to support their beliefs.
The volume has become a classic of debunking literature
relative to the occult.
Gardner continued to turn out books, primarily on mathematics,
over the years. Periodically he gathered his columns
into what has turned into a series of books on mathematical
games. In the 1980s he returned to the debunking role and
turned out three new volumes Science Good, Bad, and Bogus
(1981), The New Age Notes of a Fringe-Watcher (1988), and How
Not to Test a Psychic Ten Years of Remarkable Experiments with Renowned
Psychic Pavel Stepanek (1989). In this debunking role he
has identified with the Committee for the Scientific Investigation
of Claims of the Paranormal, of which he was an original
member.
Sources
Gardner, Martin. How Not to Test a Psychic Ten Years of Remarkable
Experiments with Renowned Psychic Pavel Stepanek. Buffalo,
N.Y. Prometheus Books, 1989.
———. In the Name of Science. New York George Putnam’s
Sons, 1952. Reprinted as Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science.
New York Dover Publications, 1957.
———. New Age Notes of a Fringe Watcher. Buffalo, N.Y. Prometheus
Books, 1988.
———. Science, God, Bad, and Bogus. Buffalo, N.Y. Prometheus
Books, 1981.