This week, we will focus on the eugenics movement(s). While the history of the eugenics movement has often been placed in transnational context, especially transatlantic context, scholars have only recently begun to investigate the role of concepts of disability in eugenics and the effects on the lives of people with disabilities.
Please use the comment function to post two discussion questions about this week’s readings by Thursday at 2 pm. Focus on intriguing or controversial points in the readings that you think will spark discussion. Strong discussion questions are open-ended, engage with major points in author(s)’ arguments, and are not factual in nature.
Please also post one of the following:
- a short description (1-3 sentences) of your “muddiest point,” that is, what important point of the author’s argument did you have trouble grasping
- your “most interesting connection” for this week’s reading
If you refer to a specific point or quote in one of the readings, please provide the author and page number.
READINGS FOR NOVEMBER 7TH
1) Stefan Kühl, The Nazi Connection: Eugenics, American Racism, and German National Socialism (Oxford University Press, 2002)
2) “Disability and Nazi Culture” in Carol Poore, Disability in Twentieth-Century German Culture (University of Michigan Press, 2009), 67-134 (MavSpace)
3) Philippa Levine and Alison Bashford, “Introduction: Eugenics and the Modern World,” in The Oxford Handbook of the History of Eugenics, eds. Alison Bashford and Philippa Levine (Oxford University Press, 2010), 1-25 (MavSpace)
4) Choose one of the following case studies:
- Pamela Block, “Institutional Utopias, Eugenics, and Intellectual Disability in Brazil,” History and Anthropology 18, no. (June 2007): 177-196 (MavSpace)
- “‘To End the Degeneration of a Nation’: Debates on Eugenic Sterilization in Interwar Romania,” Medical History 53(1) (January 2009): 77-104 (MavSpace)