Monday 17 March 2014

On the brain of the Negro, compared with that of the European and Orang-Outang

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Eyes of Intelligence,
two blokes from Victorian times

In 1836, author John Brown (above right) was a slave in America. It was generally assumed, at that time, that the brains of  black folk were somehow inferior to that of white folk. This assertion, based upon the grossly incorrect thoughts of Cuvier, no-doubt eased the moral qualms of slave owners. The German scientist Friedrich Tiedemann (above left) published his work on the subject in that year. Below, an abstract, followed by his full paper.

Unfortunately Tiedemann's work was largely ignored and, in the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica, a most appallingly racist, and totally un-scientific, article on the "Negro" was published. It's presented here, after Tiedemann's paper, and makes very uncomfortable, cringe-worthy reading.


Abstracts of the Papers Printed in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London (1800-1843)

Full Article-
 Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, June 1836

1911 Encyclop√¶dia Britannica,
racism wins over science -

John Brown, after escaping slavery and arriving in England, in 1855 dictated his book -

Slave Life in GeorgiaA Narrative of the Life, Sufferings, and Escape of John Brown, a Fugitive Slave, Now in England.
This harrowing account can be read on-line here.

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Unrelated to this post, below is an example of
eclectic science esoterica 

Crystalline gold,
top Californian, bottom Victorian

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