AD DATING Femeie de la particular la individ 44. “To End the Degeneration of a Nation”: Debates on Eugenic Sterilization in Inter-war Romania

Ministerul Educației, Culturii și Cercetării | Guvernul Republicii Moldova

Introduction Among various programmes of biological engineering developed in the twentieth century eugenic sterilization is one of the most notorious.

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The reasons are numerous, ranging from its application under the Nazi regime to its post application in the Scandinavian countries, the recent sterilization of the Roma in the Czech Republic, and China's birth planning policies. Within the economic crises and political instability that characterized the late s, eugenic sterilization attracted considerable attention from both the medical profession and social reformers interested in protecting the nation from alleged biological degeneration and social decline.

AD DATING Femeie de la particular la individ 44

Supporters of eugenic sterilization maintained that they were rendering the utmost service to society: defending future generations from social and biological degeneration. The extensive acceptance of eugenic sterilization is also reflected in its geographical diffusion: it was as passionately debated in Britain, the United States and Germany as in Brazil, Poland and Romania.

Yet, while the Western European, North American and Latin American cases are well researched, little is known about debates in Eastern European countries. The Romanian case meaningfully demonstrates the increasingly intertwined relationship between eugenic sterilization as medical praxis and eugenic sterilization as political discourse geared towards the political engineering of a biologically defined community.

This relationship came about as a result of both international and domestic circumstances, including the wide diffusion of eugenic ideas throughout most European countries and the US following the First World War. In inter-war Romania, on the other hand, debates on eugenic sterilization were predominantly stimulated by a particular fear of the degeneracy of the Romanian nation.

For many supporters of sterilization, the concept of the nation served as a unifying principle linking their preoccupation with hygiene to concepts of eugenics, social progress and economic sustainability. Not to inquire into the debate on sterilization would not only render the history of Romanian eugenics during the inter-war period incomplete but would also leave the relationship between concepts of national health and totalitarian biopolitics unexplored.

Eugenic Sterilization as Medical Praxis The first sustained discussion on eugenic sterilization in Romania took place in the s. Within general European concerns about natalism and population policy, the newspaper accommodated a debate on abortion and birth control with the hope of clarifying some of the uncertainties surrounding sexual reproduction. The first, supported by the surgeon Constantin Poenaru-Căplescu, was against abortion; the other, articulated by the director of propaganda in the Ministry of Work and Health, Iosif Glicsman, writing under the pseudonym Dr Ygrec, endorsed it.

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  • În temeiul Programului de la Stockholm — o Europă deschisă și sigură în serviciul cetățenilor și pentru protecția acestora 5adoptat de către Consiliul European în cadrul reuniunii sale din decembrieComisia și statele membre au fost invitate să examineze modalitățile de îmbunătățire a legislației și a măsurilor practice de sprijin pentru protecția victimelor, punând accentul, cu prioritate, pe sprijinul și recunoașterea acordate tuturor victimelor, inclusiv victimelor terorismului.

We will try to introduce this procedure in our country as soon as possible, for both degenerate women and men. If Manliu was mainly preoccupied with the North American model of eugenics, the discussion now broadened to include Germany and France.

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As noted by Gisela Bock with regard to German racial hygiene, the campaign for sterilization took a new, more vigorous turn by the end of First World War. A prompt reaction came from the psychiatrist and neurosurgeon Dimitrie Bagdasar. In supporting the opposite view, Bagdasar resorted to the arguments put forward by the French psychiatrist Roger Mignot in his studies on morbid heredity and polygamy.

Without a clearly established link between heredity and biological degeneration, Bagdasar contended, physicians should abstain from endorsing the sterilization of those suffering from mental illnesses. Bagdasar's invocation of French psychiatry was not accidental.

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It was customary for Romanian physicians, especially from the Kingdom of Romania, to receive their medical education in France and, consequently, they were influenced by French medical practices and ideas. This increased acceptance of explanations for degeneration based on heredity and genetics occurred in the wake of a wider focus on national projects of ethnic protectionism. The notion that there was a strong relationship between dysgenic individuals and the broader community—the nation—emerged during this period.

His grievance thus has to be read against the background of debates between the new political elite originating from the provinces and the political interest groups in Bucharest over the most appropriate method for protecting the Romanian majority in the new state created in ; a state which accommodated numerous ethnic minorities, and regions with different historical traditions.

The first was the translation of an article written especially for the journal by the leading supporter of eugenic sterilization, Harry Laughlin, the deputy director of the American Eugenics Record Office. To be sure, Romanian eugenicists continued to argue for improvements in education, housing and public health as prerequisites for a healthy nation, but supporters of eugenic sterilization regarded these methods as ineffective, representative of a transitional phase in the history of medical sciences that would inexorably be replaced by a new scientific ethos, based on eugenics.

A New Eugenic Ethos A new sanitary law was introduced in Romania inexpressing the ideas of social hygiene and public health of its architect Iuliu Moldovan, at the time sub-secretary of state in the Ministry of Work, Health and Social Protection.

AD DATING Femeie de la particular la individ 44

That eugenics served, in fact, as one of the guiding principles of the law is evident from the regulation of abortion. Just a year after the law was promulgated, Manliu asserted in a much bolder way the need for eugenic sterilization.

Ministerul Educației, Culturii și Cercetării | Guvernul Republicii Moldova

Once more, it was eugenic sterilization that Manliu favoured. This time, he envisioned a racial crusade against national degeneration. To end the degeneration of a nation we need to sterilize en masse.

Eugenicists in both the United States and Germany expressed similar positions on this issue.

As a basic practical measure, he continued unabatedly, Sterilization should be declared legal in all prisons; mental asylums; schools for juvenile delinquents; colonies of vagabonds; and for homeless people found during police raids, etc. For other abnormal, free individuals psychopaths, the mentally insane, alcoholics, etc. It is sufficient to have the consent of the person on whom the operation is performed.

That he enlisted the Orthodox Church to help disseminate eugenic thought is particularly important. Compared with the public announcements of the Catholic Church, including the papal encyclical Casti connubii On Christian Marriage that condemned negative eugenic methods such as abortion and sterilization, 49 the Orthodox Church was ambivalent on the subject, and did not issue any equivalent official statements.

If the Church firmly popularizes eugenic ideas and collaborates fanatically in their realization, it could provide an invaluable service in our struggle against the degeneration and Asiatization of our race.

“To End the Degeneration of a Nation”: Debates on Eugenic Sterilization in Inter-war Romania

Sterilization is one of the decisive factors AD DATING Femeie de la particular la individ 44 the extermination of sub-humans, and the biological ennoblement of mankind. Indeed, he was the first to argue for widespread sterilization of the population.

Yet, subsequent contributions to the debate on eugenic sterilization indicate that, at the time, he was acting as an isolated enthusiast, whose theoretical concerns and rhetorical usages were not shared by other Romanian eugenicists.

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Rather, most of them preferred to direct their attention at specific medical and social categories—especially the feeble-minded—than generalize about the racial future of the Romanian nation. Feeble-mindedness and Psychiatry Manliu's article was published in the newly established Revista de Igienă Socială Review of Social Hygieneedited by the social hygienist and public health reformer Gheorghe Banu.

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The journal emerged in the s and s as another important Romanian publication on eugenics, hygiene and social hygiene, one directly competing with Moldovan's Buletin Eugenic şi Biopolitic for scientific pre-eminence and readership.

Shortly after Manliu's article, the Revista de Igienă Socială published another commentary on eugenic sterilization. Written by Mareş Cahane, AD DATING Femeie de la particular la individ 44 psychiatrist in Diciosânmărtin today Târnăveni in central Transylvania, this paper re-focused the sterilization debate on a specific category of individuals: the hereditarily feeble-minded.

As already shown, the social danger posed by mental disorders was constantly emphasized within Romanian discourses on eugenic sterilization. But fears of mental degeneracy might have been overstated, Cahane argued. According to one statistical analysis, in there were no more than 41, registered cases of patients suffering from mental disorders; that is 0.

Advanced Search Abstract Analysis of data derived from the Historical Population Database of Transylvania for the period to confirms that social classes in localities undergoing industrialization were subject to inequalities in adult mortality and that, starting in the s, adults with agricultural and semiskilled occupations had a greater likelihood of living longer. Marriage had a protective effect for men, though not for women, regardless of time and place. Between andadult mortality suffered the influence of multiple environmental and epidemiological crises, whereas between anddifferences in longevity were attributable mainly to economic development and its associated activities. After the s, the survival prospects of both men and women improved. This article investigates adult mortality in Transylvania between the middle of the nineteenth century and the outbreak of World War I.

To be sure, Cahane was no radical eugenicist, but, like other Romanian authors, he too was well read in the North American and European literature on eugenic sterilization, as indicated by his correspondence with the American eugenicist Ezra Gosney. In fact, Cahane based both his interpretation of the sterilization laws in the United States and the arguments about legislating for sterilization in Romania on Gosney and Popenoe's account of sterilization in California. Cahane cited this colony as a model for similar institutions to be created in Romania, a fact reiterated on the occasion of the XIth Congress of Neurology, Psychiatry, Psychology and Endocrinology held in Diciosânmărtin in under the presidency of Constantin Parhon, the founder of the Romanian school of endocrinology.

It was also at this conference that Cahane addressed the issue of therapeutic sterilization of the hereditarily feeble-minded.

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The ensuing discussion attracted the participation of prominent Romanian psychiatrists, including Leon Ballif and Mircea Bruteanu.

On the final day, the Congress adopted a motion according to which: Members of the XIth Congress of the Society of Neurology, Psychiatry, Psychology and Endocrinology … ask the … Ministry of Health to accept as a prophylactic measure the sterilization of the hereditary feeble-minded by X-rays or vasectomy.

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This sterilization could be performed only on patients who have been interned for at least five years in a mental hospital and only after the advice of a commission of specialists and the consent of the family [have been obtained]. Indeed, he repeatedly stressed Dating site cu telefon need to differentiate between therapeutic and voluntary sterilization.

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With respect to the first, Cahane acknowledged that for certain categories of the feeble-minded—schizophrenics, for instance—sterilization and castration should be compulsory.

He thus concluded his discussion by stressing that directors of mental hospitals had a duty to persuade recovered patients of their need for sterilization, and to inform them of how disadvantaged their offspring would be.

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It was left to physicians and psychiatrists working in mental institutions to decide which methods of treatment were most suitable for their patients, a legal authorization that was—Cahane insisted—codified in the sanitary law of Article Laws authorizing sterilization were introduced in SwitzerlandDenmarkGermanyNorwayand Finland As a result, Romanian eugenicists began to promote their views more vigorously, particularly their commitment to sterilization.

The debate also widened. Hitherto restricted to medical specialists, eugenic sterilization now increasingly attracted other categories of professionals, especially legal experts, sociologists, and statisticians.