From broken brains to Frankenstein: A Walt Whitman birthday listicle

FPG via Getty Images Walt Whitman was born on this day in 1819. His lifespan overlapped with a period in neuroscience history that laid the foundation for today’s exciting time of brain exploration. For example, in 1854 when Whitman was 35 years old, Emil Huschke produced the first lithograph of the human brain. Just one year later, Pierre Gratiolet proposed a strategy for how to demarcate the lobes of the human brain that is similar to how they are defined today. Though he would likely roll over in his grave at the word listicle, here are three ways Whitman is historically linked to the brain: 1. Bumpology. Whitman’s writings are littered with references to the brain and especially phrenological terms. Phrenology (or ‘Bumpology’) was that fad of a science in…


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