B is for Bentham, B is for Branson; Of Heads As Odes

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3 Responses

  1. Shag from Brookline says:

    Richard Branson-shaped ice cubes in a Bloody Mary without vodka (or my preference, gin) might be appropriate. Now what might we call such a drink, a Dick Mary, or with regular ice cubes a Dick-less Mary?

  2. Matt says:

    For what it’s worth, that’s actually a bit off on Bentham. He first donated his body to science and had it dissected as part of a medical exhibit (by a well-known medial professor who was one of his problems) in part to try to lessen the stigma of doing this. (To have one’s body subject to dissection at the time was a punishment for murders and so there was a lot of stigma attached to it.) His head was preserved, but the body was “used up”, leaving the bones. That was used to make a stuffed model, basically, with his clothes, but the body wasn’t really preserved, other than the bones. This was obviously a pretty odd thing to do in many ways, but was also done with a pretty clearly utilitarian view in mind. (Bentham’s views are pretty much all unsatisfactory, but he’s also almost always more interesting than most people who talk about him, few of whom have bothered to really read much.)

  3. Deven says:

    Dear Matt,

    Thanks for the clarification. Most helpful.