Science Looks at the Werewolf
That’s LIVE Science, people. As in, the website livescience.com. It’s, y’know, scientific and stuff. Educational. (Don’t tell the kids or they’ll stop reading!) I chanced by chance upon this article, like, by chance, wherein somebody over at livescience (Note: If I ever open a mortuary, and then decide to establish a website to advertise said business, I will TOTALLY call that website DEADscience.com! Unless there’s already a website by that title. Lemme check. No, there isn’t! There’s a similar one, but it’s not exact!) examines the werewolf as a cultural and psychological mainstay. Did the scientist types, or more to the point the folks who write about the scientist types, get it right where the hairy loup garou is concerned? Let’s consult with an expert on the subject—as I just so happen to be one, it would be easiest to just consult with myself.
Their treatment is cursory, but it’s MOSTLY accurate. The writer states that the full moon, historically, was “originally only one of many possible causes of lycanthropy.” Mmm, sorta. He should credit Curt Siodmak, who largely created the connection between the full moon and Lycanthropy with his script for the 1941 Universal classic THE WOLFMAN. The tired old trope of porphyria as the basis of the belief in werewolves is trotted out, as is hypertrichosis, before the article moves on to the celebrated case of Peter Stubbe and the countless unfortunate victims of the witch and werewolf trials of the Middle Ages and Renaissance. Several other were-creatures are mentioned in closing. All in all, it’s a good article for the layman, and it likely met its required word count. As far as werewolf lore goes, though, it scarce scratches the surface.