Eugenics

By: Laura Owens

Overview

Eugenics is defined by a science that tries to improve the human race by deciding who breeds with who or by hereditary traits, races, or breed. During World War II, Hitler and many from the Nazi party wanted to create a pure Aryan race to represent Germany and eventually the world. Germans who were thought to be Jewish, homosexuals, degenerates, along with many other minorities were targeted and either sent to concentration camps, sterilized against their will, or killed in the euthanasia program.

Eugenics originated in the U.S. and later moved to Germany because of Harry H, Laughlin. He was able to pass on his study of eugenics to the Nazis.

"Sparta must be considered the first Völkisch State. The exposure of the sick, weak, deformed children, in short, their destruction, was more decent and in truth a thousand times more humane than the wretched insanity of our day. Adolf Hitler

Heinrich Himmler

Himmler was the notorious head of the Nazi SS and was very interested in German ancestry. Being in second-in-command to Hitler, he could indulge in his guilty pleasure that went hand-in-hand with racial science. Along with like-minded German scientists and historians, set out to find the perfect human.

Experiments

These scientists, historians and Himmler looted museums and burial sites, taking hundreds of thousands of Jewish skulls and other German artifacts. Along with that, the scientists used live specimens from concentration camps to measure the human capacity to withstand freezing temperatures, high altitudes, and other gruesome experiments.

"The aim of eugenics is to represent each class or sect by its best specimens; that done, to leave them to work out their common civilization in their own way." Francis Galton

Works cited

"Eugenics." Merriam-Webster. Merriam-Webster, n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2014.

"Himmler's Pet Racial Project." Ebscohost. Ebscohost, n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2014.

Hitler, Adolf (1961). Hitler's Secret Book. New York: Grove Press. p.17-18.