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Blind Boy Apollo
and the All-White Astronauts

New Age "Asiatic" thought ... is establishing itself as the
hegemonic ideology of global capitalism. (Zizek)

Tuesday, January 24

conservation & eugenics

don't lean on me man, cause you can't afford the ticket...
~ bowie

In my recent research travels through the twisty passages of the net -- sometimes more like a midnight pub-crawl -- I've come, a time or two, glancingly, across references linking eugenics to the early conservation movement in America. Such things sometimes fall through the cracks, forgotten for months, then resurface as nagging urges to run just one more Google search, one more search on A9, one more slumming through the negro streets of Amazon at dawn, looking up an angry fixation.

So I ran the searches, poked around, filtered and sifted and sorted and -- as more usual than ever these latter days, as the net casts its web ever broader and deeper -- hit paydirt. It'll need some unpacking, but here's a taste...

Rainger succeeds best in his detailed and scholarly attention to Osborn's social milieu, which surpasses even that of Allan Chase's exhaustive Legacy of Malthus (1975). Such information (absent in Kühl) is essential for understanding the lavish funding available in the United States for eugenic research and promotion, but also for its ties to the conservation movement.

~ from Conserving The Race:
Natural Aristocracies, Eugenics, and the U.S. Conservation Movement

Gray Brechin, Antipode, July 1996

I hyperlinked the sources in the passage above, but here are the references spelled out...

That last one is kicking around here somewhere, the other two are new to me. But won't be for long. They look to be bang on, as is Brechin's article and bibliography. Everything I could have asked for.

...well, I could have asked to tie all this to California somehow, since I've lately been nosing around in those woods a bit. For instance, my most recent post about California -- You Can Check Out Any Time You Like -- calls out a book I've since gotten my hands on: Imperial San Francisco: Urban Power, Earthly Ruin by a guy named... hey, wait a minute! By a guy named Gray Brechin! Same guy who wrote the article I was just quoting from about eugenics and conservation.

Whoa! -- as Keanu might say -- back in Synchronicity City (don't lean on me man). Or is it just the plot, thickening?