Posts tagged davenport
Recent news has again brought eugenics into present day politics. The GOP has decided not to endorse the candidacy in New York of Jim Russell for congress due his views published in a paper about 10 years ago. All funding, volunteers, and any other resources are being withdrawn. Russell’s comments about interracial marriage are drawing the most attention:
“In the midst of this onslaught against our youth, parents need to be reminded that they have a natural obligation, as essential as providing food and shelter, to instill in their children an acceptance of appropriate ethnic boundaries for socialization and for marriage.”
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Understanding the inheritance of eye color has been a challenge for decades. Most parents try to make their best guess about their unborn child’s eye color, hoping for that warm brown or the more rare bright blue outcome.
Davenport and other eugenicists oversimplified eye-color inheritance early in the last century, and we have since come to discover that several genes determine eye color.
Recently, a group in the Netherlands has taken our understanding a step further by using high resolution imaging and More >
The recent completion of the maize (corn) genome sequence gives us pause to think about the historical connection between agriculture and eugenics. It also causes us to consider why the leading American eugenicist, Charles Davenport, failed take greater stock in the corn research going on at one of several institutions he presided over at Cold Spring Harbor.
Especially in the United States, eugenics was firmly grounded in agriculture. Many of the leaders of the American movement had backgrounds in plant and animal breeding. For example, prior to becoming superintendent of the Eugenics Record Office (ERO) at Cold Spring Harbor, Harry Laughlin had More >