Harry Bruinius biography

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Harry Bruinius
Photo: Joyce Ravid

Harry Bruinius

Harry Bruinius Biography

Harry Bruinius is the author of Better for All the World: The Secret History of Forced Sterilization and America’s Quest for Racial Purity. He was born in Chicago and attended Yale University, where he studied theology, and Columbia University, where he studied journalism. He is a frequent contributor to The Christian Science Monitor, a professor of journalism at Hunter College, and the founder of The Village Quill. He lives in Manhattan.

Harry Bruinius's website

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Interview

Are the forces that led many well-meaning people to support the eugenics movement in the first half of the 20th century the same as those that lead many today to trumpet the promises of genetic engineering? Read what Harry Bruinius, author of Better For All The World: The Secret History of Forced Sterilization and America's Quest for Racial Purity has to say on the subject.

How did you get access to the letters, diaries, and public records you did while researching Better For all the World, and where did that research lead you?
The research trail for the American eugenics movement led me to a number of archives around the country. The primary repository of documents, photos, and other material is located at the American Philosophical Society Library in Philadelphia. Most all of the papers of Charles Davenport and the Eugenics Record Office, the loci of my story, are housed here. At the Pickler Memorial Library at Truman State University in Missouri, the papers of my other main character, Harry Laughlin, remain available to researchers. Another important repository can be found at the California Institute of Technology Archives in Pasadena, which includes the papers of the Human Betterment Society.

But one of the most exciting collections turned out to be the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Archives in New York, where I found a treasure trove of untapped sources on the family life of Charles Davenport, including the diaries of his father and mother. I corrected a long-established misunderstanding of Davenport, which maintained that he had been beset by "conflicting ...

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Books by this Author

Books by Harry Bruinius at BookBrowse
Better for All the World jacket
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Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Harry Bruinius but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
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  • Jonathan Eig

    Jonathan Eig

    Jonathan Eig, a former reporter at the Wall Street Journal, is the best-selling author of The Birth of the Pill, Luckiest Man, Opening Day, and Get Capone. He lives in Chicago with his wife and children. (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Better for All the World

    Try:
    The Birth of the Pill
    by Jonathan Eig

  • Joel Garreau

    Joel Garreau

    Joel Garreau is an American journalist, scholar, author of Radical Evolution, Edge City: Life on the New Frontier and The Nine Nations of North America.

    He has appeared on such national media as Good Morning America, Today, ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Better for All the World

    Try:
    Radical Evolution
    by Joel Garreau

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