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Ben Maldonado
Ben Maldonado studies history. His column "Eugenics on the Farm" will be appearing every odd week of winter quarter.

Eugenics on the Farm: Ray Lyman Wilbur

On January 22, 1916, Ray Lyman Wilbur became the third president of Stanford University. In his inaugural speech,Wilbur promised that Stanford would aim for “control of those unnecessary diseases that devour the very marrow of the [human] race” and would “lead in the fight against oppression, evil, ignorance, filth.” These words would have perhaps been less ominous if Wilbur was not a eugenicist.

Eugenics on the Farm: Leonas Lancelot Burlingame

Leonas Lancelot Burlingame started teaching at Stanford in 1909. His favorite class, which he taught up until his retirement in 1940, was on heredity and social welfare, in which he taught Stanford students on the importance of eugenics, the science of human improvement through restrictions on reproduction.

Eugenics on the Farm

David Starr Jordan, the first president of Stanford University, was one of the most prominent eugenicists of the early twentieth century. In the name of eugenic progress, Jordan promoted the sterilization of unwanted populations, led and founded eugenic advocacy groups, and fought against the immigration of “inferior” populations to the United States.

Stanford Review 2.0 and ahistoricity

Last week, the Stanford Review Editorial Board published a response to Professor David Palumbo-Liu’s response to an article in the Stanford Review calling for Palumbo-Liu to distance himself from the Campus Anti-Fascist Network or resign from Stanford. While the whole situation has been quite messy, the Review hoped to bring clarity to the situation in…

Let’s talk about Robert Spencer

Let’s talk about Robert Spencer. As some of you know, Spencer has recently been invited by Stanford College Republicans to give a talk funded by Stanford on November 14 about the dangers of radical Islam. This has expectedly led to criticisms from other campus groups, often portraying Spencer as an Islamophobe who twists historical fact…

‘The Vietnam War’ revisited: Books to counteract historical narratives

A few days ago, the Stanford Review published an article by Andrew Friedman entitled “Burns’s ‘Vietnam’ Recites a Leftist Consensus.” This article was a review of Ken Burns’ and Lynn Novick’s recent 18-hour “The Vietnam War,” a television documentary which aired last month. The article criticized how the documentary simply repeated the commonly taught analyses…

Blazing in ‘Airless Spaces’

Sex, gender, technology, Marxism, Freudianism and plenty of dialectics — “The Dialectic of Sex: The Case for Feminist Revolution” has it all. Written by radical feminist Shulamith Firestone in 1970, this seminal text of feminist theory took the world by force, predicting the end of capitalism, calling for the destruction of biological sexual dichotomy and comparing…

Stanford Philharmonia provides engaging glimpse into musical worlds

A week ago, I had the pleasure of attending the Stanford Philharmonia concert at Stanford’s very own Bing Concert Hall. Conducted by Anna Wittstruck, the performance featured various works by French and Spanish composers. After opening with Claude Debussy’s classic “Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune” (Prelude to the Afternoon of the Faun), the concert featured…

St. Lawrence String Quartet baffles and delights at Bing

As a fan of composer John Adams and of chamber ensembles, I can only describe the St. Lawrence String Quartet’s performance at Bing Concert Hall on Sunday as simply and utterly amazing. In celebration of John Adams’s upcoming 70th birthday in February, the quartet, featuring Geoff Nuttall and Owen Dalby on violin, Lesley Robertson on viola…
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