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Can you name the most cited individuals* from academia?
Enter an individual* (last names acceptable) in the box below
Correctly named individuals* will show up below
Answers do not have to be guessed in order
Taken from academic papers 1980-1992. *One of the answers is not an individual, it is a book of which the true author remains disputed or is unknown.
This quiz has not been verified by Sporcle
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/10 individuals* correct
Show Missed Answers
1818 - 1883
Marxism, The Communist Manifesto, Das Kapital
1870 - 1924
Russian Revolution, Leninism, What Is To Be Done?
1564 - 1616
Plays, Sonnets, Other Poems
384 - 322 BC
Father of Western Science, Logic, Physics
N/A (see instructions)
The Christian Holy Book
428 - 348 BC
Father of Western Philosophy, Theory of Forms, The Republic
1856 - 1939
Father of Psychology, Psychoanalysis, Dream Interpretation
Generative Grammar, Language Acquisition Device, Universal Grammar
1770 - 1831
Dialectic, Sublation, Master-Slave Dialectic
106 - 43 BC
Oration, Rhetoric, Innate Rights
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(Warning: comments may contain spoilers)
Most Cited Quiz
Created Dec 18, 2010 in
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Dec 19th, 2010 at 03:23 GMT
Helpful hint: Think of the greatest philosophical, academic, political or literary minds of all time. Use the dates to help.
Dec 19th, 2010 at 04:26 GMT
I see I'm the only person so far to get the one who's still living; but then again, I was taking classes from him at MIT when that news was released, so it rather stuck in my mind.
Dec 20th, 2010 at 15:59 GMT
Thankyou very much for the editor pick Hejman! :)
Dec 21st, 2010 at 03:59 GMT
Wow. What an eclectic list of people! I’m not sure I agree with the “helpful” hint: if it were that, then some scientists like Newton, Darwin, Euler (to name just a few) would be up there too. I guess that philosophy, literature, and certain schools of politics have more of a tendency to base their canon around the works of a few specific authors and keep returning to them, whereas in the sciences, even the greatest get superseded by their successors. Given that, I’m surprised that Kant isn’t on there — beaten out by Hegel, oh, the ignominy!
Dec 28th, 2010 at 06:22 GMT
Would it not have been appropriate to just say that the Bible "is a book by a collection of authors" ? Shakespeares works have disputed authorship as well.
Dec 29th, 2010 at 14:39 GMT
@ christkotx: Shakespeare's works are disputed, but I wouldn't say they are so on the same level as the Bible. In academic terms, no one knows who wrote the Bible, whereas the majority of people are fairly sure who wrote the works of ol' Shakey (Baconians excluded). @ pit_trout: I agree, but I'd also add that in the arts/humanities, oyu tend to get schools of theories, of which one or a few people tend to lead, whilst in the sciences, the theory is often greater than the person. Also, if you were to mention gravity in an essay, you don't have to put (Newtown, 1687) whereas if you mention generative grammar you do have to put (Chomsky, 1965), so the different methods of citing play a part too.
Dec 31st, 2010 at 06:07 GMT
Thanks for your reponse, joebobs. What I'm not comfortable with, however, is the contention that "no one knows who wrote the Bible". The great majority of Bible books (and all the the NT ones but Hebrews) reveal who the writer was within the text. So there are about 40 authors - making the Bible an anthology more than a single book. Why cant we take these self-identified authors at face value (until we have a compelling reason not to)? Do we give the same amout of skepticism to other ancient written texts that have a declared author?
Jan 4th, 2011 at 14:46 GMT
I appreciate your argument, but: as far as I know, there is a fairly popular argument that the NT books were not written by single people, but by schools of priests. I remember hearing somewhere that there was evidence the Gospel of John was written a considerable time after he died (sorry, I can't remember the source, I'll have a look if you wish). As for comparison to other texts, in some cases, yes, we do. There is debate about the works of Plato for example. It's just that the Bible is such an important and influential book that it receives a lot more attention. If it turned out all the works of Plato were written by someone else, it wouldn't change their content, they're arguments of logic. But if the Bible's authorship is different, it does have an impact upon our view of it.
Jan 4th, 2011 at 14:51 GMT
To clarify my statement 'no one knows who wrote the Bible', what I should have said, is no one can provide evidence compelling enough that the majority of Bible scholars will all agree who the author of certain parts are. True, the Bible is at a disadvantage to other books here, as a large chunk of its readers won't accept an answer other than God. Compare this to Shakespeare, for example, and the large majority will say Shakespeare did in fact write the works - there's an argument that the Baconian argument is linked to 18th Century snobbery about Shakespeare being uneducated and therefore, in the opinion of Samuel Johnson et al, incapable of writing such works.
Jan 4th, 2011 at 14:53 GMT
On the point "Why cant we take these self-identified authors at face value (until we have a compelling reason not to)?" Well, because, one could well argue, the authorship of the Bible does matter. Again, it differs to many other works in that the Bible asks us to live our lives a certain way and do what it says. Because of this, authorship matters. (Wow, long response, sorry! :p)
Jan 21st, 2011 at 04:30 GMT
Marx and Lenin top the list because citing Marx or Lenin was/is politically necessary in nations with a Communist system. All of the social science and literature in Communist nations is framed in Marxist-Leninist terms. Also, especially during the most repressive phases of Communism (Stalin, Mao), it was necessary for all scientists (even physicists or mathematicians) to quote Lenin or Marx in their papers. I believe this data, but I am just saying it's an artifact related more to political repression than genuine influence on the academic community. For example Mao's quotations ("Little Red Book") was the most-printed book of the 20th century, but I would hardly call it the most influential at an international level.
Jan 22nd, 2011 at 11:54 GMT
@ 311rvmt: Whilst that's true, Marx has a huge influence in other fields. I do English Language and Literature, and Marx had been hugely influential in my area. Many of the 20th Century's greatest thinkers came from a Marxist school of thought. Deconstructionism is based from Marxist theory. I'd say that for Lenin, the reasons you gave are certainly true, but Marx has that, plus the huge contribution he made to Western critical thinking.
Jan 28th, 2011 at 11:13 GMT
Wow, I found this because I had seen the list and thought it might make a good Sporcle quiz ... beat me by a month :). @311 - Even if the Marx and Lenin citations are forced, the list still represents the reality of academic life during the 20th century. No matter what era this list had focused on, the political and social climate would have affected it.
Jun 11th, 2011 at 19:01 GMT
Damn it!!! I thought this quiz would be good never heard of most of those people apart from william shakespear but make some more GOOD quizzes like the geography ones. You've been cnyb'ed. Laters
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