Chapter

Kenyan medical discourse and eugenics

Chloe Campbell

in Race and Empire

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print August 2012 | ISBN: 9780719071607
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781700686 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7228/manchester/9780719071607.003.0003
Kenyan medical discourse and eugenics

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This chapter analyses the theories of predominant eugenicists. Eugenics in Kenya grew out of the theories disseminated from Britain; the application of current ideas about the transmission of innate characteristics, in particular intelligence, shaped a new and extreme eugenic interpretation of racial difference. The study deals with the theories and researches of Dr H. L. Gordon and Dr F. W. Vint that became connected with eugenics, in particular their contributions to the subject of race and intelligence. Gordon tempered some of the extremity of his theories by emphasising that scientific knowledge was at an early stage in the area of brain and racial backwardness and reiterating the need for large-scale scientific research to uncover the causes of African backwardness. Despite Gordon's emphasis on the objectivity of science in providing answers to the problem of racial backwardness, there are fundamental flaws in this research that call into question its scientific integrity.

Keywords: eugenics; Kenya; Gordon; African backwardness; racial difference

Chapter.  17843 words. 

Subjects: Colonialism and Imperialism

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