Human monstrosities generated violent debates in the eighteenth century. Some theologians argued that  they were a sign of God’s power; other theologians maintained that God was perfect and would never have created a two-headed child; and then there were the more radical thinkers who maintained that human anomalies pointed to the fact that there was no God. In Sublime Disorder, Curran examines how Denis Diderot entered this debate, using human anatomical monstrosities as a way of thinking beyond the limits of his era’s life sciences.


Voltaire Foundation, University of Oxford