Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Better Breeding in the West: The History of Sterilization and Eugenic Theory in California
by Serrano, Christy D., M.A., California State University, Long Beach, 2018, 123; 10743065
Abstract (Summary)

This thesis contributes to the study of American eugenics by chronicling its history in California, the state where most modern American sterilizations took place. Eugenics had a powerful role in California’s twentieth-century social policy, and this project exposes how theories about racial purity and social engineering became intertwined with the Progressive movement, the gender politics of the Cold War, anti-immigration advocacy groups of the 1970s, and contemporary environmental movements. Through an examination of archival material from the collections of prominent eugenicists, newspaper articles, and historical essays on eugenic theory, population control, and environmentalism, this study addresses the ways in which eugenic theories of biological hereditarianism affected public policy and medical practice in twentieth-century California, raising important questions about the complex intersection of public health with race, gender, and class.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Schrank, Sarah
Commitee: Berberian, Houri, Luhr, Eileen
School: California State University, Long Beach
Department: History
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 57/04M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: American history, History
Keywords: California, Eugenics, Sterilization
Publication Number: 10743065
ISBN: 9780355669794
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