Category Archives: Soviet Madness

Mad Scientist #13/14: Vladimir Demikhov and Robert White

Robert White and Vladimir DemikhovOkay, so you’ve got the job interview of your life tomorrow, just one small problem: your kidney is failing. Also your spleen has ruptured. You’re experiencing necrosis of the liver, critical hyperkalemia, and, why not, septic shock. In short, you’re dying…or are you?

With your last ounce of strength you set out and grab the sturdiest, most passed-out homeless man you can find and drag him to the nearest experimental surgery clinic that’s open late. Plunking his rum-soaked body on the counter so as to startle the triage nurse you yell, “I need a full body transplant! Stat!” Continue reading

Mad Scientist #2: Alexander Bogdanov

Few nations in history have produced more mad scientists than the USSR. We’re going to spend plenty of time plumbing the depths of Soviet insanity here on Mad Scientist Blog, so it only seems fitting to begin our exploration with Bolshevism’s earliest oddball intellectual: Alexander Bogdanov.

A trained physician and master theoretician, Bogdanov began his career as a Marxist ideologue, and wound up creating a body of work so staggeringly pretentious, it transcended all known bounds of philosophy and science. In the process he lay the groundwork for cybernetics and systems theory, pioneered the genre of Soviet science fiction, and inadvertently established a Russian tradition in blood science.

Sound like a mouthful? Bogdanov’s career defies easy characterization. Any attempt to understand the man must engage him at his own level, which, as you might have guessed, is really way the fuck out there. Continue reading