Wednesday, April 09, 2008

This caught my eye a while ago:

Sex and eugenics, 1953

It is a scan from a 1950s "men's magazine." I had been searching for items related to the American eugenics movement, and this beauty popped up. I found a 1933 copy on Amazon that was actually offered at the same $2.99 as the 1953 advertised price. I’ll be using the advertisement and the book by Herman H. Rubin, M.D., as a case study in popular eugenics thinking in the USA prior to the Second World War, and just after it.

The language used in the advertisement is interesting all by itself. The banner has “tortured” “fear” and “sex” all linked to each other. Notice that the sadomasochistic imagery continues; “Shackled by tortures of improper Sex Knowledge,” “DON’T be the SLAVE - BE THE MASTER of LOVE.”

These men’s magazines were also rife with other sadomasochistic images involving Nazis, as in the cover art from a 1966 magazine seen below;


Creationists habitually employ the same themes as in the advertisement, and the cover art in regard to the theory of evolution. They claim that teaching evolutionary biology turns children in to depraved sex maniacs, and that evolutionary theory lead directly to the Holocaust.

Is it their sexual repression and fear, or merely a convenient and cynical ploy?

1 comment:

Gary S. Hurd said...

By the way, the sadomasochistic cover illustration was deleted because creationist fundamentalist wanted to gain a slight rhetorical advantage.