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ID 15760

Eugenics montage

Description:
The Human Genome Project has provided the tools to determine the  genes that influence human health and behavior. In the face of this knowledge, will society gravitate toward a prescribed definition of the genetic "right stuff?" Will we look with compassion or disdain on people with genes that predispose them to physical or mental illness? Eugenics was the name of society's first attempt to grapple with these questions. The movement began benignly in England with positive efforts by families to improve their own heredity. Eugenics took a negative turn in America, where 30 states passed sterilization laws in a misguided attempt to limit the spread of mental illnesses and other "dysgenic" traits. Then, the Nazis began their march toward a "final solution" for racial purity with a massive program to sterilize mental patients. (DNAi location: Chronicle)
Keywords:
human genome project,kay jamison,francis galton,carrie buck,eugen fischer,charles davenport,racial purity,prescribed definition,mental illnesses,massive program,mental patients,mozes,final solution,right stuff,heredity,sterilization,human health,disdain,mental illness,nazis
Creative Commons License This work by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

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