I wanted to gain a sense about some of the opinions floating around out there about publishing works with out the use of references. Of course, the vast majority of papers certainly include references these days. However, in principle it is still possible to write a paper that does not directly borrow materials from another source, or that is original/based on first principle, etc. For instance Einstein's initial paper on special relativity did not include references. But, today I don't see too many, if any published articles without references. So, for the sake of the pole, I'd like to see where some people may sit on the topic of papers that do not directly borrow from other works. I could see including a list of resources outside of the paper that address similar topics to things you are discussing. But if you did not directly utilize these papers in your work, should they be included as "references?" Additionally, is there an assumption that papers are "supposed" to include references? If so is this a functional assumption in every case? Does anybody have any experience about publishing when they didn't feel references were necessary for their paper?