Tag Archives: medicine

Manic Monday: Hysteric for Charcot’s Mysterious Medical Muses

Charcot - Frighteningly Real

Charcot {29 November 1825 – 16 August 1893}

Remembered today as a leading mind in the fields of neurology and psychology, Jean-Martin Charcot‘s legacy is as much in his strange medical photography, as his famous pupils (Sigmund Freud and Georges Gilles de la Tourette), and important breakthroughs in the field.

Taken for research purposes, these bizarre medical photographs were used to document the various affects and disorders of the 19th century’s most scandalous disorder – Female Hysteria.

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Charcot- Say Hello To My God- Science and Faith - Art and Reality- Vintage Style

For thousands of years, hysteria has plagued the medical community as a bit of a mystery. Known as “the wandering womb” by Hippocrates since the Ancient Greeks, the known method for treatment was almost always pregnancy until the 19th Century when a vaginal massage and/or stimulation using a vibrator or water hose administered by your family doctor was the modern approach.

Charcot, however, was interested in the minds of these plagued women, and hoped to use one of technology’s latest advancements, photography, to aid his research.

Charcot- vintage medical photography- wild history

Charcot - The Ladies - Magic Medical Mystery (x4)

Charcot - Many Faces and Treatments - Art and Medicine

What resulted is a macabre collection of photographs that capture terrifying and strange lost moments between doctor and patient. He took these photographs over the course of many years with hundreds of different women, as well as men (murderers and convicts) to decipher the physical codes of the world’s most confusing ancient tradition – madness.

The Eye of Faith- Charcot - Strange Behaviour

Charcot - Twisted Sister

Charcot - Vintage Style - Design Wise - Images - Man Alive

Although some of his attendants and colleagues who describe these photography sessions as highly staged, with Charcot demanding perfection of the moment that usually occurred back at the hospital, beyond the truthful eyes of the 19th Century camera. He painstakingly ensured the detail captured in each photograph was true to, what he thought, was the true depiction of the disease and its many characteristics.

Charcot- Master Mystery Tour- Vintage Medical Photography- Hysteric

 

The photographs are very specific and plain. No out of element lighting techniques or off angles – just the subject, and their explicit diagnoses. What came through is a very disturbing display.

The photographs were used to illustrate the true nature of this neurological disorder to a society fascinated by the elaborate and unusual. While many of the women were unable to be treated for their “problems”, they remain unforgettable figures of our modern life.

L0034940 Series of three photos showing a hysterical screaming woman

Today, they are as awesome and curious as ever, with hardly anything in our contemporary culture to compare these majestic and mysterious medical muses.

We really wanted to share. Don’t get hysteric!

Until we meet again,

{theEye}

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Mad Memories- Photographing Suitcases from New York State Mental Asylum

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In 1995, 400 suitcases were recovered from the attic of the Willard State Asylum in Upstate New York. Many patients died at the asylum and were buried in graves marked only by numbers. For many, these suitcases are the only traces left of these sad, lost, and lonely lives.

{click here to watch a creepy video infiltrating the now abandoned Willard State Asylum}

Dating between 1910 and 1960, photographer Jon Crispin has begun the chilling endeavour of cataloguing each suitcase and the contents therein. These people were deemed unfit for society, but Crispin’s photographs reveal a tragic humanity to the individuals whose memory remain in the mysterious objects and photos in these many bags and luggages.

Being the lovers of mystery we are, we couldn’t help but share some of these photos with you here, and the strange enigma they leave for us to ponder.

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[SOURCE: Daily Mail]

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{PHOTOBLAST} SKULL & BONES SOCIETY

Thout Shalt Not Enter

There’s no denying our obsession with the iconography; the classic skull & bones is an age-old motif that has fascinated and enchanted for centuries. It can mean power, it can mean wealth, it can mean science, it can mean art.

As Hamlet proposes “To be, or not to be”, so we are faced by the grim reminder of our inevitable end every time we see a skeleton or skull, and yet it seems our society is still obsessed. It seems like some sort of riddle. That we can still hold onto the bits and pieces of our ancestors. In a sense, that’s all that is left after thousands of years.

Skull Scare

It can be a tender reminder, but it can also cause a fright! We hate waking up in the middle of the night to see a skeleton, or skeletons, walking around outside your bedroom. We hate seeing them pop out of their graves. We hate when they attack you in the middle of the night when you are away from busy intersections.

So whether we are crippled with fright, or sporting a warning of your vicious vibrations, or just like the look, the skull is about a classic a symbol as ivy or the fleur-de-lis. We love having them in our art, on our clothes, and in the things we watch on screens. Perhaps it’s as simple as the title says. . . we are a Skull & Bones Society!

Get your inspiration on! Skulls and Skeletons can come to life!

Until next time,

{theEye}

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