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Briefly explain how each of the following contributed or detracted to the Social Darwinism or eugenics movement in America: (20-30 words each)

Count Arthur de Gobineau:

Houston Stewart Chamberlain:

Charles Darwin:

Herbert Spencer:

William Graham Sumner:

Josiah Strong:

Andrew Carnegie:

Lester Frank Ward:

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Sample Answer

here is a brief explanation of how each of the people you mentioned contributed or detracted to the Social Darwinism or eugenics movement in America:

  • Count Arthur de Gobineau: Gobineau was a French diplomat and writer who argued that the white race was superior to all other races. His ideas were influential in the development of Social Darwinism and eugenics.
  • Houston Stewart Chamberlain: Chamberlain was a British-German writer who was also a strong advocate of white supremacy. His book, “The Foundations of the Nineteenth Century,” was a major influence on the Nazi Party.

Full Answer Section

  • Charles Darwin: Darwin was the English naturalist who developed the theory of evolution by natural selection. His ideas were sometimes misinterpreted to support Social Darwinism, but he himself did not endorse these ideas.
  • Herbert Spencer: Spencer was an English philosopher who developed the theory of Social Darwinism. He argued that societies, like organisms, evolve through competition and natural selection.
  • William Graham Sumner: Sumner was an American sociologist who was a leading advocate of Social Darwinism. He argued that government intervention in the economy was harmful and that the poor should not be helped.
  • Josiah Strong: Strong was an American Protestant minister who argued that the Anglo-Saxon race was destined to rule the world. His book, “Our Country,” was a bestseller in the late 19th century.
  • Andrew Carnegie: Carnegie was an American industrialist who was a major philanthropist. He also supported eugenics, believing that it could be used to improve the human race.
  • Lester Frank Ward: Ward was an American sociologist who rejected Social Darwinism. He argued that cooperation, not competition, was the key to social progress.

It is important to note that not all of these people were explicitly racist or eugenicist. However, their ideas were often used to justify these ideologies. The Social Darwinism and eugenics movements had a significant impact on American society, and their legacy continues to be felt today.

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