Anthropology at War: World War I and the Science of Race in by Andrew D. Evans

By Andrew D. Evans

Among 1914 and 1918, German anthropologists carried out their paintings in the middle of full-scale warfare. The self-discipline was once rather new in German academia while international conflict I broke out, and, as Andrew D. Evans finds during this illuminating e-book, its improvement was once profoundly altered through the clash. because the warfare formed the institutional, ideological, and actual atmosphere for anthropological paintings, the self-discipline grew to become its again on its liberal roots and have become a nationalist activity essentially fascinated about medical experiences of race.

Combining highbrow and cultural background with the historical past of technology, Anthropology at struggle examines either the origins and effects of this shift. Evans locates its roots within the choice to permit scientists entry to prisoner-of-war camps, which brought on them to concentration their examine on racial experiences of the captives. stuck up in wartime nationalism, a brand new iteration of anthropologists started to painting the country’s political enemies as racially various. After the struggle ended, the significance put on racial conceptions and different types persevered, paving the way in which for the politicization of medical inquiry within the years of the ascendancy of nationwide Socialism.


"Evans not just bargains an evidence for the most important transition within the background of German anthropology, he additionally offers the main entire historical past of the self-discipline to be had up to now. Even past this striking scholarly paintings, Evans has made a true conceptual contribution to the heritage of technological know-how, correcting the dominant view of the relation among technology and politics." - Matti Bunzl, collage of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign"

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Extra resources for Anthropology at War: World War I and the Science of Race in Germany

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Many physical anthropologists worked in the field of ethnology as well as their own. Luschan, for example, worked as both an ethnologist and physical anthropologist for the majority of his career and taught in both fields at the University of Berlin. Ranke also taught in both fields at the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich. Moreover, many important ethnologists, like physical anthropologists, were physicians. Bastian, for example, was a doctor who had studied medicine under Virchow. Furthermore, although the goals of the two fields differed, both shared an approach drawn from the natural sciences.

3 In the life of the Bavarian bureaucracy, this exchange was wholly unremarkable, except perhaps for Birkner’s tone. For the anthropologist, the presentation of the volume was an opening to affirm the worth of his discipline. In what would normally have been a trivial and unimportant message, Birkner felt it necessary to defend anthropology’s right to take its place alongside the traditional disciplines in the natural sciences, such as physics, biology, and medicine. These were the fields that received a great deal of public attention and state support, and he sought to include anthropology among their ranks.

In the larger effort to attract state support for anthropology in the late nineteenth century, the Schulstatistik represented the discipline’s greatest success. The problem was that the project did not translate into further collaboration with the state or an increased stream of funding for anthropology. 72 Despite the success of the school survey and the growth of anthropological societies in the years after unification, the overall level of professionalization within the discipline remained extremely low throughout the late nineteenth century.

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