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Eugenics is the dirty word that haunted the twentieth century. It makes us think of forced sterilization, Nazi death camps, and ethnic genocide. It’s the attempt to use science to manipulate genetic inheritance, to change human evolution, to breed a “better” human. It led to the belief that the lives of the disabled, the lower classes, the nonwhite, people such as our presenters, Adam and Angela, were somehow worthless. It even suggests that they should be exterminated for the sake of the human gene pool.
We imagine that we are beyond this now, that it was the fault of a handful of evil scientists, it doesn’t exist in the twenty-first century. But the truth is far, far different. It’s a stranger, more complex, much more surprising, much more troubling story.
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Out of 600,000 works of art stolen or looted by the Nazis during WWII, more than 100,000 are still...
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