Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
|Title: ||Striving for National Fitness: Eugenics in Australia 1910s to 1930s|
|Authors: ||Wyndham, Diana Hardwick|
|Keywords: ||Alcoholism, Australia, Baby Bonus, Birth Rate, Child Healt, Yellow Peril Degeneracy, Eugenics, Eugenist, Family Planning, Feeble-minded, Feminism, genetics, infant mortality, marriage certificates, maternal mortality, mental defectives, migration, naturv|
|Issue Date: ||1996|
|Publisher: ||University of Sydney, History|
|Abstract: ||Eugenics movements developed early this century in more than 20 countries, including Australia. However, for many years the vast literature on eugenics focused almost exclusively on the history of eugenics in Britain and America. While some aspects of eugenics in Australia are now being documented, the history of this movement largely remained to be written. Australians experienced both fears and hopes at the time of Federation in 1901. Some feared that the white population was declining and degenerating but they also hoped to create a new utopian society which would outstrip the achievements, and avoid the poverty and industrial unrest, of Britain and America. Some responded to these mixed emotions by combining notions of efficiency and progress with eugenic ideas about maximising the growth of a white population and filling the "empty spaces". It was hoped that by taking these actions Australia would avoid "racial suicide" or Asian invasion and would improve national fitness, thus avoiding "racial decay" and starting to create a "paradise of physical perfection". This thesis considers the impact of eugenics in Australia by examining three related propositions: 1. that from the 1910s to the 1930s, eugenic ideas in Australia were readily accepted because of concerns about declining birth rate; 2. that, while mainly derivative, Australian eugenics had several distinctive Australian qualities; 3. that eugenics has a legacy in many disciplines, particularly family planning and public health. This examination of Australian eugenics is primarily from the perspective of the people, publications and organisations which contributed to this movement in the first half of this century. In addition to a consideration of their achievements, reference is also made to the influence which eugenic ideas had in such diverse fields as education, immigration, law, literature, politics, psychology and science.|
|Rights and Permissions: ||Copyright Wyndham, Diana Hardwick;http://www.library.usyd.edu.au/copyright.html|
|Appears in Collections:||Sydney Digital Theses (Open Access)|
This work is protected by Copyright. All rights reserved. Access to this work is provided for the purposes of personal research and study. Except where permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, this work must not be copied or communicated to others without the express permission of the copyright owner. Use the persistent URI in this record to enable others to access this work.
|adt-NU2000.0015whole.pdf||3.04 MB||Adobe PDF|
|adt-NU2000.0015front.pdf||25.76 kB||Adobe PDF|
Items in Sydney eScholarship Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.