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No. 41: Sep-Oct 1985

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Death And Social Class

A 10-year study of 17,530 London civil servants showed a strong relation between mortality rate and employment grade -- the higher the grade level, the lower the mortality rate. The mortality rate for unskilled laborers was three times that of high-level administrators.

Part of the disparity is doubtless due to differences in weight-to-height ratio, cigarette consumption, and amount of leisure-time exercise, which are also strongly correlated with mortality rate. But such personal habits tell only part of the story. Coronary heart disease, which accounted for 43% of all the deaths, was much more prevalent among the lower employment grades, even among monsmokers. Childhood nutrition and other "early life factors" also play roles. Nevertheless, a factor-of-three is a whopping difference in mortality rate.

(Anonymous; "Death, Be Not Proud," Scientific American, 253:68, July 1985.)

Comment. There are so many contributing factors here that we cannot be sure if a biological anomaly exists.

From Science Frontiers #41, SEP-OCT 1985. 1985-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987