Britannica's Battle of the Brains

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Conquistador
Lulu
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Britannica's Battle of the Brains

Post by Conquistador »

As a part of my research, I was reading through old copies of the Encyclopædia Britannica's employee newsletter, and I found a reference to a buzzer-based team quiz competition that they sponsored called the "Battle of the Brains". The first one was held in 1988 (or possibly 1987) and was open to middle schools from the Chicago suburbs. It took place in what appears to be the atrium of a shopping mall in North Riverside, IL. They began to be held in other cities around the country after that, continuing until at least 1994. The questions were, based on a Boston Globe article, "convoluted" and often quite difficult for the players. Examples include "Who theorized that a population will always tend to outrun the growth of production; in other words, that population increases geometrically while the food supply increases arithmetically?" and "Who wrote the short story 'Paul's Case'?".

Is anyone familiar with these events?
Michael Coates
University of California, Berkeley '17, '21
University of Chicago '15
Warren G. Harding High School (Warren, OH) '12
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Stained Diviner
Auron
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Re: Britannica's Battle of the Brains

Post by Stained Diviner »

I lived 4 miles from there from 1990-92 and never heard of it, though I had no connections to quizbowl or middle schools at that time.
David Reinstein
Head Writer and Editor for Scobol Solo, Masonics, and IESA; TD for Scobol Solo and Reinstein Varsity; IHSSBCA Board Member; IHSSBCA Chair (2004-2014); PACE President (2016-2018)
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ValenciaQBowl
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Re: Britannica's Battle of the Brains

Post by ValenciaQBowl »

"Who wrote the short story 'Paul's Case'?"
Dang, that IS convoluted!
Chris Borglum
Valencia College Grand Poobah
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