Cesare Lombroso

Cesare Lombroso

Source: Stefano Ferracuti
Affiliation: Journal of Forensic Psychiatry

This academic paper has the following abstract:

The Italian physician Cesare Lombroso, one of the first scientific criminologists and a forensic psychiatrist, was an outstanding exponent of positivistic naturalism. His work engendered unending controversies, especially for the aspects concerning the absence of free will. Although Lombroso related criminal behaviour primarily to biological factors such as atavism, epilepsy and moral insanity, he increasingly recognized the importance of environmental influences in causing crime. As this review underlines, in tracing the development of his thought during the course of his life, Lombroso partly changed his theories on criminality.In some aspects yet their influence still persists today.Anattemptof a reinterpretation of the positivistic thought in ‘criminal anthropology’ is proposed.


This paper gives context to the ethical issues surrounding today's artificial-intelligence emotion recognition systems through detailing the life and work of Cesare Lombroso, who believed criminality could be determined from facial features.

Keywords: Artificial Intelligence , Computer Science , Emotion Recognition , Physiognomy , Science Fiction , Tech Ethics