1 9 8 D O C U M E N T 6 2 J U N E 1 9 2 0
than serum absorption yields typical spectra. You know that I already examined
spectral displacements by absorption with Shepperd in
It now involves de-
termining the displacements by the colloids of blood; then we would have a very
far-reaching physical method for detecting alkaloids and characterizing physic.
solutions and poisons in part to a considerable degree. You remember still how I
managed to identify a blue dye and its origin. I imagine that, in a short while, we
shall have come so far in the area of poisonings, as with our ultraviolet instrument
for traces, that we shall have proof in hand [. . .] for the main groundwork of evi-
dence of the presence of a foreign substance, the distribution, and at least the group-
ings, with a serial recording of 20 individual spectra, which we can easily fit on one
plate. This is exceedingly important because poisonings from new substances are
extraordinarily widespread. The introduction of mass poisons is perhaps the
greatest misfortune that the war caused, along with reckless money-making with
all the so-c[alled] substitute
As soon as any old filth can be presented
in some form or other so that the public can identify a particular property in that
object, which it must otherwise pay dearly for, and as soon as it is just a little cheap-
er than the valued one, it is bought. It started with celluloid and honey; and there
will be no end to
The workings of knowledge about isolated causal relations
are such that it easily becomes a means of power.
It will be of further interest to you that the very latest is that we must investigate
suspended sentencing and its psychological repercussions. I find the suspended
sentence an essential factor in the responsibility of justice, as recourse against the
stifling framework that looms behind every law.
With the wish that you are doing well,
[. .
62. From Vladimir K. Arkad’ev[1]
[Moscow,] 22 June 1920
Highly esteemed Professor,
With great interest I read your new papers, which fell into my hands through Na-
tional Commissar of Culture and Education
At the University of Moscow a first convention of the Russian Physical Associ-
ation will take place at the beginning of September 1920. The program will ad-
dress, among oth. things the question of relations with foreign
With best regards, yours very sincerely,
W. Arkad’ev.
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