50 Years ago

Television and the Child: An Empirical Study of the Effect of Television on the Young. By Hilde T. Himmelweit, A. N. Oppenheim and Pamela Vince — The widespread interest aroused by this report is easily understood. It is the first study of its kind to be conducted among English-speaking peoples and, indeed, probably in the world ... In general, television does not cause listlessness, loss of sleep, bad dreams, lack of concentration, or eye strain. Children are not made more passive or become more aggressive, or kept away from youth clubs by television. Against this are a number of conclusions which, on balance, suggest that television, as at present administered, has more harmful than beneficial influence on children ... The main recommendation made by Dr. Himmelweit and her colleagues is that the B.B.C. and I.T.A. must collaborate much more over the balance of programmes.

From Nature 21 March 1959.

100 Years ago

In a letter to the Times of March 15, Prof. Osler directs attention to the useful work which is being done by the Italian Society for the Study of Malaria, founded ten years ago, for the prevention of malarial diseases. The society has promoted legislation for the gratuitous distribution of quinine, has prepared quinine in its most agreeable forms, and has introduced into practice the mechanical measures based on the defence of the habitation and the individual from the bites of mosquitoes. The result is that the mortality from malaria in Italy has declined from 16,000 in 1902 to about 4000 in 1908 ... the growth of our knowledge of the causation and prevention of malaria illustrates the stages through which so many of the great discoveries in medicine have had to pass, and is a striking example of the value of experimental methods in medical research.

From Nature 18 March 1909.