First we thought this to be an unfortunate twist. Yet, since our last forensic entomology training in Medellin at the Universidad de Antioquia with a team from Peru, Brazil, Germany and of course Colombia, we gained a different perspective.
What is your personal definition of “Body Modification”, both in modern and tribal/indigenous context?
By a giddy twist of fate, and as a co-editor of this journal, the author was asked to comment on a paper that deals with the fact that necrophilia can indeed hardly be element of an offense. The current paper is essentially a commentary on previous paper by Sara McKearn, but it also attempts to give some new insights into this moral, ethical and legal question.
hat happens after the death of a marine tetrapod in seawater? Palaeontologists and neontologists have claimed that large lung-breathing marine tetrapods...
I regard forensic entomology as applied science. The estimates we generate are based on results of carefully conducted experiments and field observations. T
Forensic medical officer is a heavy and unattractive work for most people. It happens all the time that you have to face the incomplete and smelly corpses. Out of our imagination, Mark Benecke is a unique figure in this field, and by achieving a great idea in his work, Dr. Mark becomes a world-renowned forensic entomologist. Mark Benecke was born in 1970, in Bavaria, Germany. After receiving a Dr. rer. medic. at Cologne University in 1997, he worked in the Chief Medical Examiner's Office in Manhattan, New York from 1997–1999. As of 2008, he works internationally on forensic cases as a freelance expert witness. He also teaches at various police academies and acts as a visiting professor to universities in Germany, England,Vietnam, Colombia, and the Philippines.
To determine psychological, biographical and life style parameters in a large, active, real-life vampyre subculture, we used an internet- based questionnaire with special features, including strict inclusion criteria, missing outgroup and proof of existence of all participants.
Cemetary historian David Pescod-Taylor and forensic biologist Mark Benecke think there's a simple explanation for why people believed in the living dead. Their theory involves decaying corpses and unfortunates suffering from misunderstood diseases...
n July 2012, over several days and nights, our team examined 622 mummies in the basement of the Capuchin monestary in Palermo, with corpses dating back mostly between the 17th to 20th century. The mummies passed through different, mixed stages of decay, even though their decompositional end state is mummification.
Der Liebespfeil von Schnirkelschnecken ist auch Nichtmalakologen oft bekannt. Dies ist umso verwunderlicher, da sowohl zoologische als auch populärwissenschaftliche Darstellungen - wenn überhaupt - meist nur in einem Nebensatz auf das Gebilde eingehen. Darüberhinaus gilt das "Liebesleben der Weinbergschnecke" im Volksmund als Sinnbild einer abstrusen und langweiligen wissenschaftlichen Thematik.
Interviewer: Alejandra Arredondo... I’ve come across the theory that many people believe that vampires do not exist and all the stories are just a myth. However, I believe otherwise. There has to be some reason that there are so many movies and television shows that broadcast vampires. This is why I came to you for guidance. I want to be able to fulfill my task in this research project vastly. The purpose of my project is to open the eyes to my fellow colleagues the truth behind vampirism, and the importance of it ... (Alejandra Arredondo)
Nachts, wenn draußen die eisigen Novemberstürme toben, denkt Patrick O'Baldraithe zurück an seine Kindheitstage. An den grauen Felsen der irischen Westküste wohnte damals ein verschrobener Alter. Oft wanderte der Alte den steinigen Strand auf und ab und es schien, als wollte er sich dabei jedes Fleckchen Erde unter seinen Füßen einprägen. Manchmal sahen die Kinder, daß er einen kleinen Gegenstand so weit wie möglich in Richtung Meer warf. Der alte Kauz konnte dann viele Stunden auf einem der riesigen Gesteinsbrocken am Strand zubringen, ohne sich zu rühren. Wenn ihn nicht zuvor die steigende Flut von seinem harten Sitz vertrieb, starrte er solange auf die glitzernde Wasserfläche, bis die Sonne in den abendlichen Wolken versunken war. Niemand, so erzählen es die alten Fischer noch heute, hat je erfahren, worauf er dort wartete.
Im pazifischen Makin Marakei soll es früher als Mutprobe gegolten haben, lebendige Conusschnecken zu erbeuten. Mehr als einmal hatten die Tiere einen ihrer bis zu fünfzig Giftzähne auf die tapferen Taucher abgeschossen und bei diesen zu Kopfschmerz, Atemlähmung oder sogar Herzversagen geführt.
Some science problems are eternal, and others nearly so. Pierre de Fermat's famous mathematical poser, for example, appeared in 1619, and lurked for 374 years before someone found a way to solve it. An even harder question has been wlth us practically forever:
"Which came first - the chicken or the egg?" Now, thanks to a simple discovery, I have cracked this heretofore maddening problem.
Paranormal proponents and popular articles are quick to attribute certain dramatic fire-death characteristics to an unknown or bizarre power source, but in all such deaths documented in forensic literature, there has been no need to resort to bizarre interpretations to account for the observed facts.
Forensic scientists very rarely, if ever, mention the (alleged) phenomenon of spontaneous human combustion (SHC). After reading an article on the subject in BILD, Germany's most famous tabloid newspaper (circulation four million daily), I started to wonder about this.
Lint balls from navels (navel fluff, belly button fluff) won an Ig Nobel Prize in 2002 for Karl Kruszelnicki. Dr. Kruszelnicki worked on observations reported in a survey of 4799 lint-collecting people, rather than on tons (I use that word here metaphorically) of individual balls from a single person.
I am a forensic investigator, with a new (to me, I mean) interest in lint. I mentioned this during a radio program. A few weeks later, a young couple (Elisabeth and Jan from Dresden) approached me after a public lecture and handed me a full collection of lint balls collected exclusively from their own navels. This allowed me to examine 167 lint balls from two persons instead of many different lint balls from a large number of people.
Earlier this year, news reports described a sudden plague of exploding toads in Hamburg, Germany. The reports carried conflicting descriptions and speculation from scientists, governmental officials, passersby, and other authorities -- some said these were spontaneous explosions, some attributed them to attacks by killer crows, some to bacterial or viral action.
Others advanced still more exotic theories. The public was left with a confused notion as to what exactly had happened, and how and why. To make sense of the reports, we assembled an international "dream team" -- three extraordinarily curious, determined scientists, each of whom has a deep background in one or more elements of the apparent story. Their assignment: to try to discover the truth about the exploding toads of Hamburg.
In 1572, as a Student at the University of Copenhagen, Brahe observed a very bright star. He proved that it was a Supernova located outside our solar system. Brahe's later observations of the orbits of Cassiopeia and of a comet made clear that those objects, too, were located more distantly than our moon. All this meant that - contrary to what many people believed - the heavens were changeable, not immutable Šs Aristotle had long ago postulated. Still, Brahe avoided painting a heliocentric view of the universe; he described the earth, rather than the sun, as being at the center of all things heavenly.
I am a true nerd I guess: Spectacles, checkered pattern shirt, no radio, no TV — a forensic entomologist by profession. So when National Geographic Channel called and asked the allegedly "most famous forensic biologist on earth" (my editorial house's claim, definitely not mine) to join into an investigation on the remains of Adolf Hitler, I nerdily thought it just a theoretical enterprise, and said yes. As with many people born in Germany long after World War II, I, to a large extent, regarded Hitler as a very bad, extremely cruel joke against mankind. I had never quite thought of Hitler as a real, physically present person. I have no fascination of any sort with the guy. Just look at him (see Figure 1) — he was a jerk amongst jerks.
I am a forensic entomologist. Every forensic scientist's basic mantra is: Everything is possible. My professional experience leads me to believe that there is one place on earth where more than just everything is possible -- that place is Hawai'i. On this remote part of the U.S. lives a bug that directly contradicts all assumptions modern people might hold concerning eight-legged critters: that spiders are hairy, ugly and frightening. This kind of spider is anything but.
Mostly Special Agents, and Special Agents-To-Be are served a choice of meals that some good restaurants would dream of. However, the basic impression of all people that were approached by the author, was that "the food here was better in earlier times", that the meals were "well, so-and-so", or that the food was "jeeeez, yucky". Being asked what had been better at earlier times, the Famous Steak And Wine Evening was mentioned by older agents. Noone could recall, however, in which year exactly those evenings stopped, or on which day of the week the event had taken place. (Further investigation with veteran eaters narrowed it down to Wednesday or Thursday). Another disturbing comment of an eating agent was: "It's good that I was single when I first came to the Academy. If not, I would have driven home every night just for dinner."
As a person unvoluntarily dealing with the borders of human behavior, I am used to all sorts of statements that seem to be weird in the beginning only to become resonable after digesting them further. I got to know, and to understand people of every possible color of skin, sexual preference, mother tongue, people who mutilate themselves for the purpose of self-expression, serial killers, cops, drug users, not to mention computer nerds (like my brother), and oddballish scientists (like myself).
Nur wenige Fotografen des randständig Schönen haben einen Stil, der einem sowohl plakativ um die Ohren fl iegt als auch anderen als Anregung und Maßstab dient. Martin Black hat. Oft sind seine KollegInnen, die das Dunkle ausloten, vor allem düster. Das ist für Anfänger. Andere verspritzen Blut und Tränen, sind romantisch und mögen Feen oder lassen einfach den Hintergrund weg, um ihre Subjekte umso mehr ins Hirn der Betrachter zu beamen. Das ist schon deutlich cooler.
Depending on local laws, necrophilia, on one hand might be a “disturbance of a grave”, yet the corpse does not have to be taken out of a grave to perform sexual acts on it. Also, since a human corpse is neither a person (not alive) nor a thing (former human beings in their entity are culturally not considered to be things), many societies have either a blind eye on necrophilia or explicitly prohibit it. The new argument is now that from an ethical standpoint, necrophilia cannot be wrong because it does not do harm to anybody, as long as the relatives of the former person (and of the necrophiliac) or the public will not know about it. What we therefore speak about here is “clandestine necrophilia”.
After talking to German philosophers, I now understand the naturalistic argument and acknowledge that that from a fresh ethical standpoint -- not from the standpoint of current moral or religious values that are merely traditional --, clandestine necrophilia might be, to put it in an as fresh term -- “okayish”.
Examining the properties of the two short tandem repeat (STR) loci PKLR and D8S306 for forensic applications we found both suitable for identification purposes and paternity cases. Due to its high sensitivity (lower detection limit) of down to 30 pg, D8S306 should be useful in stain analysis. The lower detection limit for PKLR is250 pg. For both systems, population data of inhabitants of the Rhine area in and around Köln (in the western part of Germany) show minor differences to the data given in the original papers; allele distributions shows Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium as confirmed by the Exact Test. Discriminating power for any person (stain analysis) is 0.96 for D8S301 and 0.94 for PKLR; exclusion chance in paternity cases is 0.68 for D8S306 and 0.54 for PKLR. Combining DNA amplification in a Perkin Elmer 2400 PCR machine with the Pharmacia A.L.F. Sequencer allowed DNA typing in one day.
As part of her current lifestyle, a 28 year old Caucasian woman routinely injures and allows subsequent healing of her skin and other tissues. Her body modifications include a “split tongue” (a tongue split to the base), which does not interfere with speaking and eating. Other modifications include large scarification patterns produced by branding and cutting. This woman has been known to eat parts of her skin, which were previously cut out of her body. She also performs “needle play” by allowing medical syringe needles to be lodged temporarily under her skin. The patient had a normal childhood, is currently employed full-time as an office manager, and is psychologically stable. Although one other case of self-induced penoscrotal hypospadias is known, this is the only report of extensive, non-psychotic, and autodestructive behavior. However, this may not be the case in the future as an increasing number of young individuals have become interested in body modifications.
MB.: Lee, is forensic entornology a science? Or what else is it?
LG.: I regard forensic entomology as applied science. The estimates we generate are based on results of carefully conducted experiments and field observations. These should be documented and published in peer-reviewed journals, subject to review and comment. They must not be "unpublished personal observations" as a general course. The results must be repeatable and documented.