Tag Archives: Charles Mackay

The White Goddess‘ very thought provoking end

Since this poll only got two votes over the two weeks it was initially open, I figured I should extend it a little bit. It’s now running until Wednesday, February 18 at 11:59 p.m., EST. Before this entry gets under way, … Continue reading

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Wrapping on relics, or, The Madness of Crowds ends

  Mackay reserves the final chapter of his Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds (known simply as The Madness of Crowds in all my tweets about it and most of these entries) with a few words about relics. … Continue reading

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The undiscussed secret to stopping duelling (or any popular madness): public shaming

  Mackay continues to catalogue the various instances of duelling throughout Europe in the latter half of his chapter on duels and ordeals. Such a thing might make it sound like The Madness of Crowds breaks down into plain miscellany … Continue reading

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Mackay decries duelling, gives a brief history

  Mackay, as a learned man of the nineteenth century, is quick and stern in his dismissal of duels. He decries them as the brute’s means to justice, and regards the duel mania that happened off and on in Europe as … Continue reading

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Mackay makes room for the madnesses of cities and for thieves

  Maybe as an extension of his break from some of the more serious matters that he’s tackled, Mackay continues his look at some of the more minor madnesses that effect crowds over his next two chapters. One of these … Continue reading

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The Madness of Crowds turns to haunted houses

  Mackay makes no bones about being skeptical about haunted houses. His chapter on the subject encompasses four major stories of such places, each ending with a perfectly mundane explanation. Actually, given the structure of households into the nineteenth century, all … Continue reading

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The Madness of Crowds tackles slow poisoning

  Maybe there was a page limit that Mackay had to meet. Some sort of standard length for Victorian miscellanies that’s been lost to history. Otherwise, I just don’t understand how “slow poisoning” is considered a “madness of crowds” worthy … Continue reading

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