of or relating to the doctrine propounded by the Italian criminologist Cesare Lombroso that criminals are a product of hereditary and atavistic factors and can be classified as a definite abnormal type.
Since Conrad elsewhere both borrows and satirizes Lombrosian taxonomies of the kind found in The Female Offender (notably in The Secret Agent), I argue that we might read "The Idiots" as a rendering of the kind of maternal passion that Lombroso contemplates as a cause of crime.
And yet you stand by silently when your mentor, the homophobic Lincoln historian David Herbert Donald, endorses the opinion of Charles Strozier when he argues with Lombrosian logic that Lincoln could not have been bisexual because then he would have been "torn between worlds, full of shame, confused, and hardly likely to end up in politics."
His thesis that modern criminology grew out of the convergence of two separate projects the 'governmental' and the 'Lombrosian project' - is not only a corrective to comic-book intellectual histories but a frame for the whole project of the Handbook.
(13.) On Lombrosian and biological ideas of crime in both Europe and America, see generally MARY GIBSON, BORN TO CRIME: CESARE LOMBROSO AND THE ORIGINS OF BIOLOGICAL CRIMINOLOGY (2002); NICOLE HAHN RAFTER, CREATING BORN CRIMINALS (1997); and RICHARD F.