The Professor and the Madman: A Tale of Murder, Insanity, and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary - Chapter 10, The Unkindest Cut Summary & Analysis

Simon Winchester
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Chapter 10, The Unkindest Cut Summary and Analysis

Minor sent a note to the Broadmoor staff on December 3rd, 1902, scrawled quickly. Minor has cut his penis off with a string. Apparently Minor had been planning it for days and saw it as a religious, redemptive act. Minor was the son of zealous missionaries and grew up with a sexual guilt complex despite losing his religion. He was a fan of Victorian biologist and philosophy T. H. Huxley, who coined the word agnostic. He thought that God did not exist but his hostility to religion faded over time.

James Murray was a strong Christian and influenced him towards returning to the faith. Murray probably re-triggered Minor's religious thinking, pushing him towards deism. But he judged himself according to his conception of an impartial, all-seeing, constantly vindictive entity. Minor obsessively masturbated and feared God's punishment...

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This section contains 444 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Professor and the Madman: A Tale of Murder, Insanity, and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary Study Guide
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