Fortean Times is a monthly magazine of news, reviews and research on strange
phenomena and experiences, curiosities, prodigies and portents. It was
founded by Bob Rickard in 1973 to continue the work of Charles Fort
Born of Dutch stock in Albany, New York, Fort spent many years researching
scientific literature in the New York Public Library and the British Museum
Library. He marshalled his evidence and set forth his philosophy in The Book
of the Damned (1919), New Lands (1923), Lo! (1931), and Wild Talents (1932).
He was sceptical of scientific explanations, observing how scientists argued
according to their own beliefs rather than the rules of evidence and that
inconvenient data was ignored, suppressed, discredited or explained away. He
criticised modern science for its reductionism, its attempts to define,
divide and separate. Fort's dictum "One measures a circle beginning
anywhere" expresses instead his philosophy of Continuity in which everything
is in an intermediate and transient state between extremes.
He had ideas of the Universe-as-organism and the transient nature of all
apparent phenomena, coined the term 'teleportation', and was perhaps the
first to speculate that mysterious lights seen in the sky might be craft
from outer space. However, he cut at the very roots of credulity: "I
conceive of nothing, in religion, science or philosophy, that is more than
the proper thing to wear, for a while."