David Ferrier’s Experimental Localization of Cerebral Functions and the Anti-Vivisection Debate

David Ferrier’s Experimental Localization of Cerebral Functions and the Anti-Vivisection Debate While representing one of the most important developments in the knowledge of the brain, both for its theoretical advances and its medical consequences, the work of David Ferrier met with strong criticism from conservative circles in Victorian society. At the end of 19th century certain British neurologists and neurosurgeons – including Ferrier – faced vehement public attacks by those aristocrats who, under the banner of antivivisectionism and “natural theology”, expressed their fears of the reorganization of medicine into a scientific discipline. The debate that developed in Victorian society after these events led not only to the diffusion of Ferrier’s ideas and public recognition of the advanced neurosurgical practices that stemmed from his work, but also contributed to the affirmation of the medical community in the scientific world of the time. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Nuncius (successor of "Annali") Brill

David Ferrier’s Experimental Localization of Cerebral Functions and the Anti-Vivisection Debate

Nuncius (successor of "Annali"), Volume 32 (1): 20 – Jan 1, 2017

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
Copyright © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
0394-7394
eISSN
1825-3911
DOI
10.1163/18253911-03201006
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

While representing one of the most important developments in the knowledge of the brain, both for its theoretical advances and its medical consequences, the work of David Ferrier met with strong criticism from conservative circles in Victorian society. At the end of 19th century certain British neurologists and neurosurgeons – including Ferrier – faced vehement public attacks by those aristocrats who, under the banner of antivivisectionism and “natural theology”, expressed their fears of the reorganization of medicine into a scientific discipline. The debate that developed in Victorian society after these events led not only to the diffusion of Ferrier’s ideas and public recognition of the advanced neurosurgical practices that stemmed from his work, but also contributed to the affirmation of the medical community in the scientific world of the time.

Journal

Nuncius (successor of "Annali")Brill

Published: Jan 1, 2017

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