ID# 1869:
"German Eugenics in Practice," by Eliot Slater, Eugenics Review (vol. 27:4), ambivalent review of sterilization and marriage laws
Pages: (1|2|3|4|5|6|7|8|9|10|11)
Cold Spring Harbor, ERO, The Eugenics Review, 27

&quote;German Eugenics in Practice,&quote; by Eliot Slater, Eugenics Review (vol. 27:4), ambivalent review of sterilization and marriage laws

292 The Eugenics Review children of an affected mother, the daughters of an affected father. Luxenburger has difficulty with the siblings of schizophrenics, and suggests that only those who are schizoid psychopaths should be regarded as tainted, not for instance those who are psychopaths of a non-schizoid kind. The clinical distinction would be one of some difficulty. He remarks that "In principle even the hereditarily tainted [erbrank] families are to be encouraged, apart from those member who are to be regarded as " 'belastet.'" The whole family with all its members may not be regarded as "belastet"; the individual members must be considered separately, to see if they come under his rules. Luxenburger's view, however, does not seem to be the official one, at least in regard to the administration of the marriage loan. Marriage Laws On October 19th, 1935, entered into force the "Gesetz zum Schutze der Erbgesundheit des deutschen Volkes." This expressly forbids marriages where one of the parties suffers from an infectious disease, is under a form of guardianship, suffers from a mental disorder, or suffers from a hereditary disease in the sense of the sterilization laws. Before marriage, certificates must be obtained from the appropriate authority to the effect that no hindrance exists on any of the above grounds. Marriages which violate the law are null and void, and the parties are liable to imprisonment, as also for attempting to get around the law, for example by marrying abroad. Marriages between "Aryans" and full Jews are also forbidden. The full Jew may only marry the full Jew. Half Jews, if the accept the Jewish faith, are reckoned as full Jews. Otherwise they may only marry half Jews. Quarter Jews may not marry their like, but only "Aryans." The certificate allowing marriage has to be obtained from the local health office ("Gesundheitsamt"). These are being set up all over Germany in every district which does not yet possess one. They correspond in many ways with public health offices in England, but their activities principally consist in carrying out the new eugenic measures. At every one of the offices a special office will be set up for giving the certificates required by the above law, and for the administration of the marriage loan. At these clinics every applicant for certificate or marriage loan will receive a careful examination. For this an official form is provided, in which besides an ordinary medical examination the doctor has to note anthropological measurements, type of constitution according to Kretschmer, racial type, twinship, all details of previous illnesses with dates and notes of where treated, so that more exact particulars can be obtained if required. Further the whole family history is gone into, and details are obtained if possible of the great-grandparents, in every case of the grandparents and all their descendants, even, if possible, first cousins. Finally a summary card is drawn up, in which the above facts are summarized, and cross references to data in the possession of other social services are given, e.g. for venereal diseases, cripples, tuberculosis, obstetrics and infant welfare, insanity and psychopathy, alcoholism, school medical service. Here also the "diagnosis" is entered, e.g. non-Aryan, insane, "belastet," criminal, peculiarly gifted, etc. The special gifts, which have to be far above average to receive mention, are mental - for mathematics, languages, organization, art, music, painting, drawing and plastic art; and practical - for manual and technical occupations and sport. Similar details are noted about all members of the family. On the basis of these findings a decision is reached as to whether the applicant is to be granted the marriage-enabling certificate, and/or the marriage loan, or as to whether he should be conditionally or unconditionally advised against marriage. The following must be disallowed the marriage loan: 1. Those who suffer or have suffered from the following hereditary abnormalities: hereditary mental defect, schizophrenia, manic-depressive psychosis, idiopathic epilepsy, Huntington's chorea, hereditary blindness, hereditary deafness, severe hereditary physical disability, severe psychopathy, severe constitutional disorder. The deaf, blind and [end]

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