Twentieth Century RevivalIn the early 20th century however, Phrenology benefited of a new interest, particularly in the viewpoint of evolutionism on one hand and criminal anthropology on the other hand.
The most important British Phrenologist of this century was the famous London psychiatrist Bernard HOLLANDER (1864-1934).
His main works, The Mental Function of the Brain (1901) and Scientific Phrenology (1902) are an objective appraisal of the teachings of Gall.
Phrenology was also very popular in the United States, where even automatic devices for phrenological analysis were devised.
In Belgium, Paul BOUTS (1900-1999) started working on Phrenology from a pedagogical background, using the Phrenological analysis to define an individual pedagogy. Combining Phrenology with typology and graphology, he coined a global approach called Psychognomy.
After his death, the work of Bouts has been continued by the foundation
PPP (Per Pulchritudinem in Pulchritudine) animated by Anette Müller,
a pupil of Bouts.
The understanding of the development of the mental faculties through Phrenology allows enlightement of the mind, allowing the improvement of self-knowledge. Phrenology thus gives a new dimension to the well-known adage "Know Thyself".
20th Century Attacks on PhrenologyThe Science came however once again under attack because of the ongoing development of psycho-analysis. The introspective and subjective method of psycho-analysis only looks to the individual psychology through the psychological structure of the examiner, who will see the other subject through his own temperament and through his prevailing faculties. This subjective approach is clearly opposed to the objective analysis of Phrenology.
Furthermore, fascist ideologies like Nazism have misused some elements of craniometry in the framework of their infamous racist doctrines. These theories, albeit completely distinct from scientific Phrenology, have given a very bad name to the science.
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