I am considering undergoing the modern miracle cure (and path to illumination!) called trepanation. This touches on my one concern, how will my phrenologist be able to then keep track of my humors? My assumption is that the new hole in my skull will mean that area is now equal to the mystical 0 (A snake biting its tail! Also equal to aleph in the holy kabbalah!), which will mean that area should be considered to have reached a state of perfection. However, my phrenologist disagrees and says that the actual area of skull will be decomposing in a rubbish bin, and will cause my personality to shift to that of a lowly cobblesmith or shoeshine. I’m beginning to think my phrenologist might be partaking of crap based medicine, and in need of a new one with higher standards of scientific investigation. Thank you, for providing a link to such an esteemed scholar in the ancient arts!
I love when pseudoscientists use their crap when discrediting their critics… such as saying “Napoleon had in fact the sloped front of the practical realist!” to criticize him. Reminds me of this great exchange…
Burns: She has the sloping brow and cranial bumpage of the career criminal.
Smithers: Uh, Sir? Phrenology was dismissed as quackery 160 years ago.
Burns: Of course you’d say that…you have the brainpan of a stagecoach tilter!
My favorite section of this phrenology page is the “examinations” they do of certain historical figures. For instance, an examination of Julius Caesar… or rather, a scuplture of his head. Kinda like UFOlogists taking a spacecrafts spectrum from a photograph. I thought phrenologist actually had to touch a person’s head to feel all the little bumps, but apparently one picture of one sculpture of a man whose been dead for centuries is good enough.
Any open and honest discussion of phrenology cannot be worthy of merit without discussing the inevitable consequence of Retrophrenology. Proven to be as effective as homeopathy and more reliable than dousing retrophrenology allows people to work on the aspects of their personality that they don’t like without hard work and sacrifice. all that is needed is a surgical chisels and medicated mallet.
I have a friend who practices phrenology. I have friends who practice all kinds of crap-based stuff. (What’s really needed is to come up with some crap-based medicine I haven’t heard about and don’t know someone who practices it. Back in the 60s, when sex and drugs didn’t equal DEATH, we believed a lot of goofy things.)
She felt up my brother’s head (run with it) and noted that he had four “corners” which manifested themselves in cowlicks. She said that this indicated that he was highly spiritual. (Actually he was high, so she was half right.)
I concur with my esteemed colleague Kevin Keilty who posted above. Utilising the purely diagnostic abilities of classical Phrenological techniques, the modern Retrophrenologist practitioner is able to affect dramatic changes to the personality and current health status of the patients via the use of specially adapted instruments.
All credit for this remarkable advance in medical practice should be laid at the door of T. Pratchett who first alerted me to this boon to modern medicine. For a more thorough understanding of Modern Retrophrenology please consult the ‘Night Watch’ series of books.
Wow. I never heard of phrenology before, and I’m a child psychiatrist. I’m so ashamed. I’m going to add this amazing science to my before limited repertoire of diagnostic tools. I will treasure it aside the “Lego at your head test”, the “call the teacher a fucking asshole test”, and, of course, the “trash the office and refuse to clean up” test.