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May 16, 1896

Racial Degeneracy.

JAMA. 1896;XXVI(20):993. doi:10.1001/jama.1896.02430720045014

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To the Editor:  —Apropos of your editorial in the Journal, May 9, " Anthropology as a Branch of Medical Education," I have the honor to send you an extract from a letter of Dr. Jules Goldschmidt, Paris, France, late Medical Superintendent of the Funchal Leper Asylum, Madeira. I had sent Dr. Goldschmidt, my article "Racial Degeneracy in America; Goitre and Dwarfing," reprinted from the University Medical Magazine, January, 1896. My conclusions were:"Racial degeneracy may be defined as non-resistance to influences inimical to the existence of the race. The individual who can not resist the disease-producing causes which are afloat, whether they be germs, climate, or whatever their nature, is physically degenerate. If the subject has lost all power of resisting the immoral tendencies which threaten the race, he is morally degenerate. A cretin is intellectually degenerate. A dwarf is a degenerate, because he has lost the faculty of growth. Goitre

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