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Eugenics; Its Definition, Scope and Aims 1


EUGENIGS is the science which deals with all influences that improve and develop the inborn qualities of a race. But what is meant by improvement? We must leave morals as far as possible out of the discussion on account of the almost hopeless difficulties they raise as to whether a character as a whole is good or bad. The essentials of eugenics may, however, be easily defined. All would agree that it was better to be healthy than sick, vigorous than weak, well fitted than ill fitted for their part in life. In short, that it was better to be good rather than bad specimens of their kind, whatever that kind might be. There are a vast number of conflicting ideals, of alternative characters, of incompatible civilisations, which are wanted to give fulness and interest to life. The aim of eugenics is to represent each class or sect by its best specimens, causing them to contribute more than their proportion to the next generation; that done, to leave them to work out their common civilisation in their own way.

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Eugenics; Its Definition, Scope and Aims 1 . Nature 70, 82 (1904).

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