Maybe I’ve been watching too many re-runs of “Oddities,” but there’s something really great about ogling gross, old medical samples and morbid doctoring equipment – if only for the spine-tingling “eeeew!” that they often illicit. Paris’ Musée Dupuytren is like mecca for connoisseurs of creepy curiosities and antiques. Established in 1835 by “the father of toxicology,” Mathieu Orfila, the collection of weird wax figures and diseased body parts was originally compiled in an unused wing of the old Cordeliers Convent, intended for use by medical students and faculty at the University of Paris. Accumulating most of their pieces between 1836 and 1842, the collection was reported to house over six thousand samples by the end of the 19th century. Tragically, financial strife closed its doors in the 1930s, and the collection sat rotting for thirty years.
The Los Angeles Times has an interesting article about how “people with Alzheimer’s, migraines, autism, epilepsy and more are picking up paintbrushes or putting drawing pencils to paper.” And despite the degenerative qualities of these disorders, as one neurologist put it, “art is…one of the few complex aspects of human cognition that doesn’t necessarily get…
This month marks the 50th anniversary of the Pill, and there’s been some interesting coverage of it by the media. Margaret Marsh, one of the first researchers granted access to the personal letters of the Pill’s co-developer, John Rock, discusses his Catholicism, among other Pill tidbits.