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Eugenic NationFaults and Frontiers of Better Breeding in Modern America$
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Alexandra Minna Stern

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780520285064

Published to California Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520285064.001.0001

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Instituting Eugenics in California

Instituting Eugenics in California

Chapter:
(p.82) Chapter 3 Instituting Eugenics in California
Source:
Eugenic Nation
Author(s):

Alexandra Minna Stern

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520285064.003.0004

This chapter explores the emergence of the eugenics movement in California from 1900 to the 1940s, during which time an influential web of individuals and groups endorsed, financed, and directed eugenic projects. These included physicians, businessmen, and biologists—all of whom infused hereditarianism into state, city, and country concerns and policies. Eugenics also reinforced doctrines of white supremacy and Manifest Destiny that dated back to the 1840s, providing new and seemingly modern grounds for racial segregation and stereotypes. Indeed, California was home to an interwoven tripartite system in which the sterilization program, antialien deportation policies, and psychometric research aimed mainly at children and adolescents worked in concert to create one of the most activist eugenics movements in the country and even the world.

Keywords:   eugenics movement, California, hereditarianism, white supremacy, Manifest Destiny, racial segregation, racial stereotypes, sterilization program, antialien deportation policies, psychometric research

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