Winner of the Cantemir Prize of the Berendel Foundation
Eugenic notion and perform swept the area from the overdue 19th to the mid-twentieth century in a amazing transnational phenomenon. Eugenics educated social and clinical coverage around the political spectrum, from liberal welfare measures in rising social-democratic states to feminist targets for contraception, from public healthiness campaigns to totalitarian desires of the "perfectibility of man." This ebook dispels for uninitiated readers the automated and it appears specific hyperlink among eugenics and the Holocaust. it's the first global historical past of eugenics and an essential center textual content for either instructing and study. Eugenics has amassed generations of curiosity as specialists tried to attach biology, human capability, and coverage. some time past and the current, eugenics speaks to questions of race, classification, gender and intercourse, evolution, governance, nationalism, incapacity, and the social implications of technology. within the present weather, during which the human genome undertaking, stem phone examine, and new reproductive applied sciences have confirmed so debatable, the heritage of eugenics has a lot to coach us concerning the courting among clinical study, know-how, and human moral decision-making.
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Additional info for The Oxford Handbook of the History of Eugenics (Oxford Handbooks)
For this reason, we have now a lot to achieve from comparative research. in contrast backdrop, this bankruptcy proposes to shift the focal point from eugenic technological know-how to its translation into concrete coverage practices, adopting a comparative standpoint. i'll draw on examples of eugenic policy-making within the usa, the uk, Switzerland, Sweden, and Germany to discover the relation among eugenic technological know-how and the kingdom, studying the impression of alternative nation formations on cross-national diversifications within the political trajectories of eugenics. COLONIAL STATES AND EUGENIC countries States that followed eugenic regulations offer ancient examples of “gardening states,” to borrow a time period from the social theorist Zygmunt Bauman,3 states that have been keen on doing away with the “bad weeds” from the nationwide backyard and thereby developed sharply exclusionary barriers round the country. usually drawing on such horticultural metaphors, eugenic technology served to legitimize practices corresponding to coerced sterilization or castration, which aimed to exclude “unfit” different types of the inhabitants from the (future) kingdom. examine at the improvement of eugenics all over the world has highlighted the centrality of nineteenthcentury organic understandings of “race” for the early improvement of eugenic technological know-how, in addition to the influence of colonization and empire. The eugenic crisis with the development of the nationwide “race” through the surveillance of electorate’ reproductive sexuality by means of the nation emerged within the political context of colonial rule. As Philippa Levine issues out in bankruptcy 2 during this quantity, fears approximately degeneracy of the nationwide “race” have been intertwined with anxieties approximately miscegenation or “blending” with colonial “others” in colonizing states similar to the uk, France, and Germany. Former white settler colonies equivalent to the USA, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand brought immigration regulations within the first a long time of the 20th century that have been at the least in part pushed by means of eugenic issues approximately differential start charges, as has been illustrated by way of Alexandra Stern and Nancy Leys Stepan. four And but, in nations akin to Switzerland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and Finland, eugenic technological know-how and practices built inside of a completely various political panorama. Switzerland was once by no means a colonizing country, and the Scandinavian international locations not had colonies (with the partial exception of Denmark) by the point eugenics emerged. in addition, their respective populations have been racially homogeneous5 within the early many years of the 20th century (preceding, relating to Switzerland, later waves of immigration that may essentially rework its demographic composition). A collective preoccupation with the “racial hygiene” of the state however strongly constructed in those non-colonial states. whereas the eugenic undertaking in a few nationwide and colonial contexts used to be serious about either “external” and “internal” others, in Switzerland and Scandinavia, the focal point used to be nearly completely on populations already inside a countrywide border.