Brain “Maps” from 1912

Two years ago, the blog BibliOdyssey posted a set of fanciful phrenological “maps” of the brain. These are not the standard Spurzheim, Combe, or Fowler diagrams that one sees in textbooks accompanying the section on phrenology. These are much more intricate and creative, sharing as much in common with the mystical Renaissance speculations of Robert Fludd (image) as with the 19th-century phrenologists.

According to a more recent post about the images in the blog Neuroanthropology, they are “the Brain Maps of Alesha Sivartha …, a fantastical collection of illustrations created by Sivartha as part of his 1912 “The Book of Life: The Spiritual and Physical Constitution of Man.” You can explore the book some through Google, but the better spot to go is Sivartha’s great-great-grandson’s website which covers the book in some detail.”

About Christopher Green

Professor of Psychology at York University (Toronto). Former editor of the Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences. Creator of the "Classics in the History of Psychology" website and of the "This Week in the History of Psychology" podcast series.

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