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Lie Detector

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63119.  Fri Mar 31, 2006 12:36 pm Reply with quote

What is Quite Interesting about the inventor of Wonder Woman?

A: He also invented the first lie detector.

Dr William Moulton Marston (May 9, 1983-May 2, 1947) was a not only a talented scientist, but also a visionary artist and feminist theorist.

He held a Ph.D in Psychology from Harvard, and in 1938 he invented the notion of testing blood pressure to detect deception, which became a key component of the modern polygraph.

In 1940, he was interviewed in a magazine and commented on the educational value of comic books. Comics publisher Max Gaines at Detective Comics saw the article and hired Marston as an educational consultant. One of Marstonís first observations was that the companyís superheros Ė including Batman and Superman Ė were all male.

Marston set to change this by creating the character of a Wonder Woman, who was partially based on his wife, Elizabeth. Initially the character was called Suprema, but the comicís editor, Sheldon Mayer, cut the name and stuck with Wonder Woman for her debut in December 1941. Wonder Woman fast became one of the most successful cartoon characters ever invented.

Marstonís personal life was unusual to say the least. He married his wife Elizabeth aged 22. Ten or so years later, he embarked on an affair with Olive Richard, one of his students, and she soon ended up living with Marston and his wife.

Marston had two children by each women, an arrangement that seemed to work extremely well. After his death in 1947, Elizabeth and Olive continued to live with each other until Olive died in the late 1980s.

Last edited by Bunter on Fri Mar 31, 2006 1:02 pm; edited 2 times in total

63134.  Fri Mar 31, 2006 12:53 pm Reply with quote

I think we need to have a clear idea in our own heads as to what subject we're trying to initiate when we ask a question. In this case, I guess it'd be 'lie detectors' rather than Dr Marston. I imagine that there is interesting stuff to be said about them, but I don't think anyone has researched it.

63135.  Fri Mar 31, 2006 1:02 pm Reply with quote

I have changed the question around in the hope that they talk about Wonderwoman. Does this improve it?

63138.  Fri Mar 31, 2006 1:09 pm Reply with quote

Yes, I think so, as long as you're after a discussion of Wonder Woman rather than of lie detectors. Depends on where you think the money is, I suppose.

Wasn't Wonder Woman's alter ego Diana Prince, but really she was Princess Diana (of the Amazons)? Maybe there's something in that. I dunno, I'm busking this.

63502.  Sun Apr 02, 2006 6:33 pm Reply with quote

And if we want to pursue the 'Diana' direction, this was posted by 96aelw on the outer board:

The sanctuary of Diana in the woods at Nemi in Italy had a distinctly odd recruitment policy for its priest. The post was only open to fugitive slaves, who gained the job by killing the incumbent in single combat. The new priest could then continue in office until he was himself killed by his successor. This rather alarming practice was said by Cato the elder to date from the late 6th century B.C., and was described by Pausanias as still going in his day (the latter half of the 2nd century A.D.). Investigating the reason behind this set up ws the ostensible reason for Sir James Frazer's 25 volume epic of magic and religion The Golden Bough.


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