The Toynbee tiles (also called Toynbee plaques) are messages of mysterious origin found embedded in asphalt of streets in about two dozen major cities in the United States and four South American capitals. Since the 1980s, several hundred tiles have been discovered. They are generally about the size of an American license plate (roughly 30cm by 15 cm), but sometimes considerably larger. They contain some variation on the following inscription:
IN MOViE `2001
ON PLANET JUPITER.
Some of the more elaborate tiles also feature cryptic political statements or exhort readers to create and install similar tiles of their own. The material used for making the tiles was long a mystery, but evidence has emerged that they may be primarily made of layers of linoleum and asphalt crack-filling compound.
Typologies of Serial Killers
- Visionary Killer: This killer feels compelled to kill because of ‘voices’ in their heads or visions that tell them to do so. For example, Herbert Williams Mullin claimed to hear voices that told him a disastrous earthquake was imminent, but he could save California through murder. Mullin killed thirteen people in an effort to ‘save California’. It was later determined that Mullin suffered from paranoid schizophrenia.
- Mission Oriented Killer: These individuals feel that it is their duty or mission to kill certain kinds of people. For example, Ted Kaczynski, commonly refered to as the Unabomber, started a bombing campaign in an effort to save the environment, which he felt was being destroyed around him. He targeted places that were creating ‘high technology’ such as universities and airlines. Kaczynski’s bombs killed three people and injured twenty-three.
- Power-Control Killers: These killers seek complete control over their victims. Seuxal activity is almost always involved in these cases. John Wayne Gacy,“The Clown Killer”, would fall into this category. Gacy murdered and raped 33 teenage boys, burying 26 of them in the crawl space of his home.
- Hedonistic Serial Killers: This is the most common type of serial killer. These individuals kill for the thrill and enjoyment they get from the act of killing. There are three subtypes of hedonistic killers:
- Hedonistic comfort killers: Killing victims provides the killer with some sort of comfort; usually money. Dorthea Puente ran a boarding house in California where she killed her elderly tenants and buried them in the backyard so she could claim their social insurance checks.
- Hedonistic lust killers: The serial sexual predator; fantasy plays a large role and their satisfaction depends on the amount of torture and mutilation they inflict on their victims. Jeffrey Dahmer is one of the best-known hedonistic lust killers. He searched for a beautiful, submissive, and eternal lover. Dahmer killed 17 men and boys in this search for his perfect lover; his murders involved rape, torture, dismemberment, necrophilia, and cannibalism (so that a part of his victims would stay with him forever).
- Hedonistic thrill killers: Their primary thrill is to create fear and death. The act is usually not sexual and is not drawn out over period of time, they are solely interested in the kill. Hedonistic thrill killers often work in teams. The notorious “Zodiac Killer” claimed to be responsible for 37 murders but investigators have only been able to pinpoint 7 victims, two of which survived. The Zodiac killer sent taunting letters to the police, and was never caught or identified.
In modern times, the murder of a person or the use of a corpse for the purpose of consumption by another human in any situation, outside that of conditions of starvation, is considered to be a form of criminal cannibalism or anthropophagy. However, the definition of and laws governing criminal cannibalism vary considerably from culture to culture.
In many parts of the world cannibalism is not considered a crime in and of itself and it is often only recognized in concurrence with another crime. For example, in Britain and the United States of America, cannibalism is not considered to be a felony, but is socially unacceptable. Those who have been found to participate in the gruesome act are usually charged with another crime that is directly related to the act of cannibalism, such as murder, grave robbery or necrophilia.
In other cultures, what some deem to be an act of criminal cannibalism may be an acceptable element of another culture. For example, Japanese enemies were allegedly consumed during the height of World War II by tribes in Papua New Guinea, which was acceptable in the culture during that period.
There are many who refuse to believe that cannibalism is practiced in this modern, “civilized” age. However, there is much evidence suggesting that it does occur and with some frequency. There have been many documented cases of cannibalism, especially within the last 100 years.
There are four primary forms of criminal cannibalism:
- sexual cannibalism
- aggression cannibalism
- spiritual and ritual cannibalism
- epicurean/nutritional cannibalism.
These various forms substantially overlap with one another. For example, one may consume human flesh for several purposes, such as to achieve a sense of power and control (aggression cannibalism), yet one may also find the taste to be agreeable (epicurean/nutritional cannibalism). Another may indulge in cannibalism in order to reach a higher spiritual affinity with the person they have devoured, simultaneously achieving intense sexual and gratification.