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Picture of the Month (August 2009)
Dedicated User Captions:
1. Professor Broca had strongly advised his assistant to _not_ touch the button on his newly devised brain stimulator... (by hvb)
2. Latest tendencies in experimental journalism: the headline-searching-machine
3. Lustiger Mann mit Hut (by Kronegger)

Read more captions (not voted, latest on top)

A Conformateur is the hatter's traditional tool for measuring the head-size of his clients. In the context of psychological anthropometric apparatuses, it was also known as "Craniometer" and is set on the head to indicate the outline of its largest horizontal area. In the late 19th and early 20th century this device was applied in Anthropometry to compare ethnological and individual developmental differences, albeit in a problematical, racist way.

The technique of head measuring was also related to the work of the Phrenologists, who tried to establish a direct link between physiological shape and character based on the studies undertaken by anthropologist Pierre Paul Broca.

Related Items:
See a selection of anthropometric instruments in the Technology section.

For the concepts behind head measuring, refer to:
Craniology and Craniometry

Picture Source:
Stoelting, C. H. 1930. Apparatus, Tests and Supplies for Psychology, Psychometry, Psychotechnology, Psychiatry, Neurology, Anthropology, Phonetics, Physiology, and Pharmacology. Chicago (Collection Rand B. Evans)

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