Skull Sciences: Histories of the Brain and Mind
How does the mind work? This was a question which fascinated scientists and the public in the nineteenth century. Many started to believe that the mind could only be understood by studying the skull and the brain. Craniologists collected and measured skulls in the service of racial science, whilst phrenologists could be found in prisons and on slave plantations. Queen Victoria asked a phrenologist to measure the heads of her children, and disciples of Charles Darwin used cranial size to rank people hierarchically.
This talk by Dr James Poskett and Dr Elise Smith explores the history of these ‘skull sciences’, uncovering how and why new sciences of the mind became so popular in the nineteenth century, and what this history tells us about how we think about the mind and body today. This is a story which starts in Europe, but extends across the globe.
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Book Tickets: £8.00
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