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The Lesson of the Pygmies

It has long been assumed that these inhabitants of the African rain forest had adapted to a kind of serfdom in villages. The discovery that they have not has implications for the problems of Africa today

By Colin M. Turnbull

Resonance Particles

Most of the 32 fundamental particles of matter decay rather quickly. There are still other particles that decay even more quickly. It now seems that the latter are “resonant” associations of other particles

By R. D. Hill

The Structure of Viruses

The electron microscope reveals that these infectious particles possess three principal types of symmetry. Each species of virus is ingeniously assembled from just a few kinds of building block

By R. W. Horne

The Evolution of Galaxies

It was once argued that galaxies begin as huge spheroids and become flattened by rotation into spirals. A new inquiry suggests that galaxies look different because they were born different

By Halton C. Arp


The unusual nuclear and electronic properties of this light element give it a variety of new uses. One of the most interesting stems from the fact that its compounds promote the synthesis of large molecules

By John J. Eisch and Henry Gilman

The Perception of Neutral Colors

What makes a surface gray and why does it stay gray even when the illumination changes? Apparently the ratio between adjacent light intensities governs the perceived lightness of an achromatic color

By Hans Wallach

Skin Transplants and the Hamster

This familiar laboratory rodent is an anomaly of the animal kingdom in several respects, not least of which is the unique hospitality it shows to many kinds of foreign-tissue grafts

By Rupert E. Billingham and Willys K. Silvers

Why do Roads Corrugate?

Many explanations have been advanced for the “washboard” surfaces so often encountered on unpaved roads. Experiments show that these jarring ridges come from the rhythmical bouncing of vehicle wheels

By Keith B. Mather


  • 50 and 100 Years Ago: January 1963

  • Science and the Citizen: January 1963

  • Letters

    Letters to the Editors, January 1963

  • Recommended


  • Mathematical Recreation

    Mathematical Games

  • Amateur Scientist

    The Amateur Scientist

  • Departments

    The Authors

  • Bibliography

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Scientific American Health & Medicine

Scientific American Health & Medicine