Contemporary Eugenics: Provocations

Rob Wilson will be giving one final talk in Melbourne before he departs for Perth, this one at Melbourne Free University at 6.30pm on Thursday, 24th October, 2019, at The Alderman (upstairs), 134 Lygon St. East Brunswick.  Open and free to the public, with 40 minutes presentation and 40 minutes discussion (though it will actually be run more conversationally throughout).  Description from the poster: 

Eugenic thinking infuses some contemporary discussions of reproductive technologies, disability, public policy, and human futures. Some forms of eugenics have found a receptive home in recent discussions in philosophy and bioethics and its worth understanding why that is. eg: in 2018, the journal Monash Bioethics Review published two papers—“Eugenics Defended” and “Looking into the Shadow: The Eugenics Argument in Debates on Reproductive Technologies and Practices”.

This session will encourage participatory reflection on how appeals to the concept of eugenics function in public discourse. Having worked together with eugenics survivors and others in the disability community over the past 10 years or so, Rob wants to explain why he take the standpoints of eugenics survivors and those in the disability community as crucial resources informing that discourse.

Rob Wilson is professor of philosophy and director of research in Politics, Media, and Philosophy at La Trobe University. Before coming to La Trobe, Rob led a large-scale community-university research project in Canada centred around constructing oral histories with eugenics survivors. Rob is the author of The Eugenic Mind Project (MIT Press, 2018) and of recent papers on well-being and disability (Mind, April 2019) and incest avoidance (Philosophy of Science, July 2019).


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