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In 1997 "Eugenics and the Welfare State" caused uproar with international repercussions. This 2005 edition contains a new introduction by Broberg and Roll-Hansen addressing events that occurred following the original publication. The four essays in this book stand as a chilling indictment of mass sterilization practices, not only in Scandinavia but in other European countries and the United States - eugenics practices that remained largely hidden from the public view until recently. "Eugenics and the Welfare State" also provides an in-depth, critical examination of the history, politics, science, and economics that led to mass sterilization programs in Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and Finland; programs put in place for the "betterment of society" and based largely on the "junk science" of eugenics that was popular before the rise of Nazism in Germany. When the results of Broberg's and Roll-Hansen's book were widely publicized in August 1997, the "London Observer" reported, "Yesterday Margot Wallstrom, the Swedish Minister for Social Policy, issued a belated reaction to the revelations. She said: 'What went on is barbaric and a national disgrace.' She pledged to create a law ensuring that involuntary sterilisation would never again be used in Sweden, and promised compensation to victims." Ultimately, the Swedish government not only apologized to the many thousands who had been sterilized without their knowledge or against their will, but also put in place a program for the payment of reparations to these unfortunate victims.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780870137587
ISBN-10: 0870137581
Format: Paperback
(229mm x 152mm x 18mm)
Pages: 320
Imprint: Michigan State University Press
Publisher: Michigan State University Press
Publish Date: 1-Sep-2005
Country of Publication: United States

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Author Biography - Gunnar Broberg

Gunnar Broberg is a professor in the Department of Cultural Studies, History of Ideas and Sciences, at the University of Lund, Sweden Nils Roll-Hansen is widely published and has taught at Roskilde Universitetscenter, The Norwegian Institute for Studies in Research and Higher Education, Cambridge University, Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin, and Rockefeller University. He is currently professor in history and philosophy of science at the Department of Philosophy, University of Oslo.