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1823 Craniology Craniometry region skull

1823 Craniology Craniometry region skull

C028/9651

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Credit

PAUL D STEWART / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PAUL D STEWART / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Craniology regions, from 'Nature Displayed In the Heavens, and On the Earth, According to the Latest Observations and Discoveries'. Simeon Shaw. Published by Sir Richard Phillips (1823). Craniology is the study of differences in shape, size and proportions of skulls from different sexes and ethnicities of humans. It is not the same as phrenology because it does not seek to impute individual character from the shape of the skull, but rather relationship to a group. The most famous proponent of the technique was Samuel George Morton. Craniology was misused early on (by Nott and Gliddon) as a support for racist racial science of intelligence and evolutionary sophistication, but such relationships have been disproved. There is controversy surrounding Steven Jay Gould's reanalysis of Morton's work. He suggested bias, but it has since been established the bias may have been on Gould's part.

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