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Re: Cooper's Thesis
On Fri, 22 Oct 2004 18:37:18 -0700 (PDT) "Jaime A. Headden"
> A possible clue as to why Cooper regarded *Troodon* as an
> or as a pachycephalosaur indeed, lies with Norman's popular book,
> Illustrated Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs,_ a volume that espouses that
> "Coelurosaurs" include *Coelophysis* (yes, yes, outdated by a far
> by today), and the the classic concepting of "Carnosaurs" included
> *Spinosaurus* and *Ceratosaurus* [were the "ceratosaurs," nothing
> but a
> hodge-podge of various small (coelurosaurian) and large
> theropods?]. In this volume, Pachycephalosauria is used to include,
> incredulously, *Troodon formosus* as a "dubious" name connected
> *Stegoceras.* In addition, the figures illustrating the type tooth
> *Troodon* are accompanied by illustrations of teeth of
> junior,* listed in the book under the Saurornithoididae as
> theropods. No
> where on the two page coverage for the "saurornithoidids" is the
> *Troodon* given.
> The book was originally published in 1985 by Salamander Books, and
> since been reprinted about 3-4 times, including by Crescent and
> Barnes&Noble Books, promoting the classic information. Now, at the
> that this book was printed, common knowledge and arguments for the
> identity of *Troodon* were limited. In fact, the most concise
> telling of
> information on *Troodon* itself as a theropod would not be published
> 1988, when Currie formally synonymized *Stenonychosaurus* and
> and the last major treatement of *Troodon* itself prior to Norman's
> coming out was L. S. Russell's 1948 paper, so it had been a while.
> Why no
> revisions had been done to the reprinting, I don't know. Norman in
> accepted these revisions with a better treatment of "Coelurosaurs"
> in _the
> Dinosauria_ (1st ed.), but it seems that Cooper neither cites Norman
> Russell's 1948 publication. However, what work she DOES cite would
> seem to
> offer no aspect on treating *Troodon* as a theropod (which even
> did in 1948), so Norman was the only hold out until 1985, when
> Currie and
> Russell would together begin revising the Dinosaur Provincial Park
John Horner talks about the early confusion about Troodon in his pop book
Horner, J. and Gorman. 1988. Digging Dinosaurs. Workman Press.
Regarding Cooper's thesis, the first thing that came to my mind was the
question: "Where was her thesis committee???" It seems they dropped the
ball. I don't know about other schools, but at my old alma mater a
committee of three profs reads both the rough drafts and the final
Masters thesis draft, and only then is the work okayed for a verbal
defense in front of a large audience. At some point in the process, most
of this stuff should have been caught by others.
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