FROM SMALL BEGINNINGS...
"Like a Tree, Anti-Eugenics draws from many sources and transforms them into a one mind and one heart way of being" Judy Dow
We are a collection of scholars, educators, curators and activists from across the globe facilitating a global anti-eugenics forum to confront the ongoing consequences of eugenics and its myriad social, political, economic and scientific legacies. Though eugenics has been a part of our collective past and our lived present, the goal of our efforts it to mitigate its present harms and do our level best to eliminate its power and harm in the future. Over the coming decade we intend to serve as a platform, bringing together anti-eugenics networks, research groups and advocacy initiatives to showcase, share, discuss and ultimately build a viable forum, to connect and elevate existing efforts and generate future efforts to build an anti-eugenics future. Key to achieving this, the forum will look for ways of reinforcing, maintaining and expanding upon the connectivity generated around recent events and discussions in this past anti-centennial year (2021) - emphasising that we stronger working collaboratively.
A century ago, eugenics emerged as an approach determining the health and well-being of populations and individuals that was deeply flawed and highly controversial. Although mistakenly consigned by many to a pseudo-scientific past, we live in worrying times, where a resurgence of eugenics thinking and practice threatens communities and individuals around the world anew. We find ourselves on the cusp of social, political, scientific, technological and economic changes that could well usher in a new era of eugenics.
Today, numerous foundations, museums, governments and institutions are acknowledging and engaging with their eugenics past. Whilst these efforts are to be applauded work to address eugenics has collectively fallen short. The speed with which eugenics ideas have resurfaced in various political, scientific and policy forms over the past few years, demonstrates how close to the surface the eugenic roots still run. In our opinion, without a thorough going-through, systemic uprooting process, these ideas could return quickly with force. In 2021, the anti-centennial of the Second International Eugenics Congress provided us with the perfect starting point for initiating a series of national and international meetings of policy makers, research and advocates to examine the history of and confront the possible future of eugenics through the From Small Beginnings project. Our work over the past year has clearly shown that there is much more to be done, and thus, this new network, the Global Anti-Eugenics Forum, will build on this year of work, establishing an on-going series of meetings, working groups, publications, and policy statements by a group of committed scholars and advocates, with the on-going inclusion and engagement of young scholars and new advocates. It will provide a platform for other anti-eugenics to showcase and build on each others' work. Over the coming year (2022) the network will be based at Oxford Brookes University in the United Kingdom. It is our intention through discussion, public engagement and policy building the Global Anti-Eugenics Forum will enable us to speak to a 'A Decade of Progress in anti-Eugenics'.
The mission of this Global Anti-Eugenics Forum, is as ambitious as the need is great. By embarking on this project we hope to achieve an anti-eugenics future for us all.
Click on the following link to find out more about this moment in the following article.
We would like to thank our numerous wonderful national/regional organisors and leads.
None of this would be possible without your energy and support.
Check out the Anti-Eugenics Atlas to find them.
“Whatever proportions these crimes finally assumed, it became evident to all who investigated them, that they started from small beginnings. The beginnings at first were merely a subtle shift in emphasis in the basic attitudes of physicians… Gradually the sphere of those to be included in this category was enlarged to encompass the socially unproductive, the ideologically unwanted, the racially unwanted, and finally all non-Germans.”
Leo Alexander reflecting on the Doctor's Trial