Maddalena Carli, Nadia Pugliese

Artificial Man. Cesare Lombroso and the Construction of the Physical Traits of Atavism

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Cesare Lombroso; Atavism; Criminal Iconography

The article presents three unpublished large-sized charcoal drawings preserved at the Cesare Lombroso Museum of Criminal Anthropology at the University of Turin. These iconographic documents, in which Italian brigands are portrayed, represent the re-visitation of some of the photographs published in the second (1878), third (1884) and fifth (1897) editions of L’uomo delinquente. In preparation for printing, they were made in order to improve the poor quality of the images but also to correct the atavistic traits of the faces depicted, accentuating their size if they were not evident enough or multiplying them if they were too faint. In our study, we will present the works and the contribution they made to the fabrication of the physical signs of the born criminal: their story recounts not only some aspects of the Lombroso method, but also the nonlinear development of the different media and their reciprocal relations

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