Synopses & Reviews
When the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Anthropology, Human Heredity and Eugenics opened its doors in 1927, it could rely on wide political approval. In 1933 the institute and its founding director Eugen Fischer came under pressure to adjust, which they were able to ward off through Selbstgleichschaltung (auto-coordination). The Third Reich brought about a mutual beneficial servicing of science and politics. With their research into hereditary health and racial policies the institute's employees provided the Brownshirt rulers with legitimating grounds. This volume traces the history of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Anthropology, Human Heredity and Eugenics between democracy and dictatorship. Attention is turned to the haunting transformation of the research program, the institute's integration into the national and international science panorama, and its relationship to the ruling power. The volume also confronts the institute's interconnection to the political crimes of Nazi Germany terminating in bestial medical crimes.
Das Buch „leistet nicht nur eine glänzende Analyse des KWI für Anthropologie, die über die bisherigen Kenntnisse hinausgeht. Es kommt auch in der Einschätzung und seinem Urteil hinsichtlich der Beteiligten auf eine überzeugende und höchst differenzierte Charakterisierung." (Notker Hammerstein, Historische Zeitschrift 282 (2006)
From the reviews: "Schmuhl demonstrates how carefully and completely Fischer's institute came to be integrated into the Nazi racial hygiene policies ... . Schmuhl and other historians have scrutinized carefully the basic research carried out at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Anthropology. ... this was both high-quality work by the standards of the day, and well-integrated into the racial hygiene policies of the regime. ... make significant contributions to a more subtle and deeper understanding of how science and Nazism interacted." (Mark Walker, Metascience, Vol. 19, 2010)
Table of Contents
Acknowledgements. List of Abbreviations. Introduction. 1. A "Purely Theoretical Institute for the study if the nature of man" The Founding of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Anthropology, Human Genetics and Eugenics, 1920-1927 2. The Human of the Future Under the Scrutiny of Research 3. The "Faustian Bargain" 4. In the Realm of Opportunity 5. Boundary Transgression 6. Index of Persons 7. Sources and Literature