From Darwin To Hitler: The Origins of Scientific Racism

The Origins of Scientific Racism Author(s): John P. Jackson, Jr. and Nadine M. Weidman
Source: The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education , Winter, 2005/2006, No. 50 (Winter, 2005/2006), pp. 66-79

Fascinating exploration of pseudo-scientific intellectual ideas from Darwinism and the problems of heredity, the impact of Francis Galton, the Teutonic Germ Theory, the rise of Nordicism and the supremacy of Nordics, Anglo-Saxon superiority, the rise of Eugenics and race in the United States, and how these ideas impacted National Socialist Germany.

The Eugenics movement drew their greatest enthusiastic support and funding — extensive funding from America’s upper-most philanthropic sources such as from the Carnegie Institute and the Harriman railroad fortune. The Rockefeller Foundation helped develop and fund various German eugenics programs, including the one that Dr. Josef Mengele worked in before he went to Auschwitz. Cereal magnate J.H. Kellogg provided funding to help found the Race Betterment Foundation in Battle Creek, Michigan. They were all in league with some of America’s most respected scientists from such prestigious universities as Stanford, Yale, Harvard and Princeton.

Top tier social scientists, especially economists, gave their full sanction to the Eugenics project. Several feminist reformers advocated an agenda of eugenic legal reform. The National Federation of Women’s Clubs, the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union, and the National League of Women Voters were among the variety of state and local feminist organizations that at some point lobbied for eugenic reforms. One of the most prominent feminists to champion the eugenics agenda was Margaret Sanger, the leader of the American birth control movement. Margaret Sanger saw birth control as a means to prevent unwanted children from being born into a disadvantaged life, and incorporated the language of eugenics to advance the movement. Sanger also sought to discourage the reproduction of persons who, it was believed, would pass on mental disease or serious physical defects. Ideas truly have consequences.

The Eugenics Crusade

Margaret Sanger Interview on PLANNED PARENTHOOD

Selling Murder: The Killing Films of the Third Reich

In his book, From Darwin to Hitler: Evolutionary Ethics, Eugenics, and Racism in Germany (2004), Richard Weikart explains the revolutionary impact Darwinism had on ethics and morality. Darwinism played a key role in the rise not only of eugenics (a movement wanting to control human reproduction to improve the human species), but also on euthanasia, infanticide, abortion, and racial extermination. This was especially important in Germany, since Hitler built his view of ethics on Darwinian principles.

War Against the Weak: Eugenics and America’s Campaign to Create a Master Race, by Edwin Black

Illiberal Reformers: Race, Eugenics, and American Economics in the Progressive Era, by Thomas C. Leonard

Imbeciles: The Supreme Court, American Eugenics, and the Sterilization of Carrie Buck, by Adam Cohen

White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America, by Nancy Isenberg

Hitler’s American Model: The United States and the Making of Nazi Race Law, by James Q. Whitman 

The Role of Darwinism in Nazi Racial Thought, by Richard Weikart

Darwinian Evolutionary Theory and Constructions of Race in Nazi Germany: A Literary and Cultural Analysis of Darwin’s Works and Nazi Rhetoric, by Emily M. Wollmuth

The Nazi Connection Eugenics, American Racism, And German National Socialism, by Stefan Kühl

The Racial State: Germany 1933-1945, by Michael Burleigh and Wolfgang Wippermann

Nazi Nexus : America’s corporate connections to Hitler’s Holocaust, by Edwin Black

Racism (Amazon book list)

The Murdering State (Amazon book list)


4:57 pm on April 27, 2022