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August 28, 1937

Prostitution: An Investigation of Its Causes, Especially with Regard to Hereditary Factors

JAMA. 1937;109(9):737. doi:10.1001/jama.1937.02780350105046

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This volume is based on investigations made in Copenhagen between 1931 and 1935. It concerns the records of 530 prostitutes, fifty of the case records being reported in full. This investigation seems to indicate that eugenic sterilization could have been of little value in preventing these cases of prostitution, that childhood and youthful environment were in general bad and that there are many widely different factors which may be the immediate or the contributing causes of prositution. The majority of prostitutes seem to be mentally a little abnormal. It is felt that well organized mental hygiene might be useful in controlling some of these cases and that there should be better coordination between the work of the police and of public welfare agencies in handling this problem.

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