Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Jeremy Bentham

Utilitarian and father of the Panopticon, is kept in a box in University College London. There is a myth that they take him to board meetings, where he is listed "Jeremy Bentham, present but not voting" and does not vote unless a measure is split evenly - in which case he invariably votes for the measure. This is considered to be not true. What IS considered to be true is the fact that his head was replaced with one made of wax, because the old one had begun to decompose, and students were continually stealing it.

Imagine: "What's that you got in the bag, Tim?"
"Oh, nothing. Just Jeremy Bentham's head."

Really, if anything, the fact that it is a fake wax head makes me want to steal it even more. Also, I think Jeremy Bentham would be an AWESOME scav item. Or possibly using that principle but someone closer to the heart of U of C, like Milton Friedman.

Thanks, Wikipedia.


Duff said...

I am not sure we want to play with such matters: I am already expecting the zombie Milton Friedman to arise and bite people to infect them with free-market capitalism. Bentham also is probably kept in a box for similar concerns. That is probably the real reason they finally completely removed his head, lest some enterprising voodoo master student succeeded. (Why else steal his head, unless to create a zombie army of Utilitarians?)

Elizabeth said...

I am imagining a utilitarian argument for zombies; your brains serve the greatest utility as someone else's dinner? Or maybe they should be split half and half so that everyone has some brains. Er. Perhaps.

Then again, a Panopticon zombie who just moaned "They're watching..." would also be funny.