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Abstract only
Peter Triantafillou and Naja Vucina

organizations, with the state’s role mainly limited to providing a certain level of financial support for these activities. With the decline of eugenics  –​both in its negative and its positive versions –​obesity would not receive much attention for the next half-​ century. But when obesity came back on to the political agenda, it did so with a remarkable force in both England and Denmark. During the 1980s, obesity was rearticulated as a political problem when medical knowledge pointed to the relationship between obesity and diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and various

in The politics of health promotion
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The tangled histories of Christianity, secularization, and race
Nathan G. Alexander

hierarchies. The ideas of Darwinian evolution provided the basis for the new field of eugenics, developed by Darwin’s cousin Francis Galton. Eugenics intended to harness evolution’s power by encouraging the “fit” members of society to have more children while discouraging the “unfit” from procreating, sometimes through forcible sterilization. Eugenics programs targeted criminality, alcoholism, “feeble-mindedness,” and other traits that seemed, often erroneously, to be inheritable. A race-based eugenics never took off in Britain, but in the United States the link between

in Race in a Godless World
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Race and society in evolution
Nathan G. Alexander

Macdonald did not think much about racial issues, but this seemingly commonsensical opposition to racial interbreeding showed how ideas about racial hierarchy could be called upon without much reflection. Eugenics Questions about racial intermixing also bring to mind eugenics, which contended that a large number of traits were inheritable and that therefore individuals’ reproduction should be carefully managed, either by the state or by society. This could take many forms, ranging from relatively benign encouragement of supposedly superior individuals to breed, to

in Race in a Godless World
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Audiences and stakeholders in the history of medicine
Solveig Jülich and Sven Widmalm

communicative activities of historians. For instance, as she discusses in Chapter 5 , Lene Koch's academic work in the 1990s on modern biotechnology and the history of eugenics gave her a media platform to engage with general as well as specific audiences that were often driven by an interest in possible similarities between early eugenics and modern genetics. She reflects on how this exercise in audiencing increasingly raised methodological and

in Communicating the history of medicine
‘Pearson’s’ publications, 1890–1914
Peter Broks

mentally deficient was coming to a climax. The following year saw the passage of the Mental Deficiency Act establishing compulsory powers to detain and segregate the feebleminded. Does this desire to restrict the breeding of the feebleminded reveal any influence from eugenics? Not necessarily. To combat the prevalence of insanity the magazine’s proposals were as often environmental solutions as eugenic ones

in Imperialism and the natural world
Psychogenetic counselling at the New York State Psychiatric Institute, 1955–1969
Marion Andrea Schmidt

, especially for a group that had long been denied this very sociolinguistic identity. Analysing these developments, this chapter ties the NYSPI mental health project to the post-war expansion of health services, community psychiatry, and a psychologization of both disability and genetic counselling that allowed for more relative definitions of deaf normalcy. Showing the complex transformation of public health-oriented eugenics into individualized genetics, it also makes visible how groups or individuals came to be defined as ‘deviant’, ‘worthy’, or ‘defective’. The

in Eradicating deafness?
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Will Jackson

tool. To laugh at deviant behaviour was to prohibit the possibility of a deeper disquiet. While the image of the white man driven mad by the tropics has been associated with the early colonial period in Kenya, the language of degeneration, as we have seen, was still alive and well in the 1950s, testament less to the enduring power of eugenics (the eugenics movement in Kenya had largely faded from view

in Madness and marginality
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The earliest image of an ambulatory mummy
Jasmine Day

growing interest in eugenics and racial theory throughout the remainder of the nineteenth century would come to dominate the interpretation of Egyptian mummies. Even a brief overview of the principal and lesser works preceding ‘Some Words with a Mummy’ that might have influenced it or shared some common source or ideology suggests that Poe was not merely following an established tradition of depicting revived mummies for comic effect, but specifically of using these characters to deliver social and political criticism. Allamistakeo's shaking fist

in Victorian literary culture and ancient Egypt
Peter Triantafillou and Naja Vucina

hygiene, social medicine, and (later) eugenics. Rather than exercising the right to take life and let live, as had been the prerogative of sovereign power, biopower is concerned with augmenting the quality and productivity of life, i.e. to create healthy and productive populations. This conception of biopower may seem of a bit out of date today, when the concern and responsibility for public welfare is no longer only or even primarily that of the state (N. Rose, 2006, p. 63). Such concerns and responsibilities seem to be dispersed among a wide range of public and

in The politics of health promotion
Peter Triantafillou and Naja Vucina

from medical experts and laymen. By the same token, a medical-​cum-​popular movement arose under the name of constructive hygiene or positive eugenics, with the aim of ensuring the mental, moral, and physical quality of the Danish population. As in England, the main concern was with underweight individuals resulting from under-​or malnutrition. In particular, there was a 81 Governing obesity in Denmark     81 strong concern over undernourished children among the poor classes, as it was envisaged that they would fall prey to a number of diseases later in life, such

in The politics of health promotion