With regards to human physiology, behaviour and social interaction, it’s time to abandon a 200-year search for normal people, argues Sarah Chaney in her new book
By Simon Ings
A couple of unusual gloves, owned by 19th-century polymath Francis Galton, lie in University College London. Galton was the person who coined the word eugenics to spell it out beliefs and practices that try to enhance the genetic quality of a population.
His motto was once you can, count, so he made a decision to put a pin in the thumb of his left glove and a felt pad, included in a strip of paper, across its fingers. By touching different fingers with the pin, Galton could track the items he saw without others noticing.