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The Resource Imbeciles : the Supreme Court, American eugenics, and the sterilization of Carrie Buck, Adam Cohen

Imbeciles : the Supreme Court, American eugenics, and the sterilization of Carrie Buck, Adam Cohen

Label
Imbeciles : the Supreme Court, American eugenics, and the sterilization of Carrie Buck
Title
Imbeciles
Title remainder
the Supreme Court, American eugenics, and the sterilization of Carrie Buck
Statement of responsibility
Adam Cohen
Creator
Author
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
ln 1927, the Supreme Court handed down a ruling so disturbing, ignorant, and cruel that it stands as one of the great injustices in American history. Here, Adam Cohen exposes the court's decision to allow the sterilization of a young woman it wrongly thought to be "feebleminded" and to champion the mass eugenic sterilization of undesirables for the greater good of the country. The 8-1 ruling was signed by some of the most revered figures in American law-- including Chief Justice William Howard Taft, and Louis Brandeis, a progressive icon. Oliver Wendell Holmes, considered by many the greatest Supreme Court justice in history, wrote the majority opinion, including the court's famous declaration "'Three generations of imbeciles are enough." Imbeciles is the shocking story of Buck v. Bell, a legal case that challenges our faith in American justice. This gripping courtroom drama pits a helpless young woman against powerful scientists, lawyers, and judges who believed that eugenic measures were necessary to save the nation from being "swamped with incompetence." At the center was Carrie Buck, born into a poor family in Charlottesville, Virginia, and taken in by a foster family, until she became pregnant out of wedlock. She was then declared "feebleminded" and shipped off to the Colony for Epileptics and Feeble-Minded. Buck v. Bell unfolded against the backdrop of a nation in the thrall of eugenics, which many Americans thought would uplift the human race. Congress embraced this fervor, enacting the first laws designed to prevent immigration by Italians, Jews, and other groups thought to be genetically inferior. Cohen shows how Buck arrived at the Colony at just the wrong time, when influential scientists and politicians were looking for a "test case." A cabal of powerful men lined up against her, and no one stood up for her--not even her lawyer, who, it is now clear, was in collusion with those who wanted her sterilized. In the end, Buck's case was heard by the Supreme Court, the institution established to ensure that justice would prevail. The court could have seen through the false claim that Buck was a threat to the gene pool, or it could have found that forced sterilization was a violation of her rights. Instead, Holmes, a scion of several prominent Boston Brahmin families, raised to believe in the superiority of his own bloodlines, wrote a vicious, haunting decision upholding Buck's sterilization and imploring the nation to sterilize many more. Before the madness ended, some sixty to seventy thousand Americans were sterilized. Cohen overturns cherished myths and demolishes lauded figures in relentless pursuit of the truth. With intellectual force and passion, Imbeciles is an ardent indictment of our champions of justice and our optimistic faith in progress.--Adapted from dust jacket
Biography type
contains biographical information
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Cohen, Adam
Dewey number
344.7304/8
Illustrations
illustrations
Index
index present
LC call number
KF224.B83
LC item number
C64 2016
Literary form
non fiction
Nature of contents
bibliography
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Buck, Carrie
  • Involuntary sterilization
  • Eugenics
  • Involuntary sterilization
  • HISTORY / United States / 20th Century
  • LAW / Legal History
  • LAW / Civil Rights
  • Buck, Carrie
  • Eugenics
  • Involuntary sterilization
  • United States
  • Virginia
Label
Imbeciles : the Supreme Court, American eugenics, and the sterilization of Carrie Buck, Adam Cohen
Link
9781594204180.jpg
Instantiates
Publication
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (pages [329]-382) and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Contents
Carrie Buck -- Albert Priddy -- Harry Laughlin -- Aubrey Strode -- Oliver Wendell Holmes -- Carrie Buck
Control code
1629005
Dimensions
25 cm
Extent
402 pages, 8 unnumbered pages of plates
Isbn
9781594204180
Lccn
2015044207
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
n
Other physical details
illustrations
System control number
  • (Sirsi) 1629005
  • (Sirsi) 1629005
  • (OCoLC)911171862
Label
Imbeciles : the Supreme Court, American eugenics, and the sterilization of Carrie Buck, Adam Cohen
Link
9781594204180.jpg
Publication
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (pages [329]-382) and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Contents
Carrie Buck -- Albert Priddy -- Harry Laughlin -- Aubrey Strode -- Oliver Wendell Holmes -- Carrie Buck
Control code
1629005
Dimensions
25 cm
Extent
402 pages, 8 unnumbered pages of plates
Isbn
9781594204180
Lccn
2015044207
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
n
Other physical details
illustrations
System control number
  • (Sirsi) 1629005
  • (Sirsi) 1629005
  • (OCoLC)911171862

Library Locations

    • Stevens Memorial Library (North Andover)Borrow it
      345 Main Street, North Andover, MA, 01845, US
      42.6961299 -71.1263305
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