negative eugenics


See under eugenics.


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Origin of negative eugenics

First recorded in 1905–10

Definition for negative eugenics (2 of 2)

[ yoo-jen-iks ]
/ yuˈdʒɛn ɪks /

noun (used with a singular verb)

the study of or belief in the possibility of improving the qualities of the human species or a human population, especially by such means as discouraging reproduction by persons having genetic defects or presumed to have inheritable undesirable traits (negative eugenics) or encouraging reproduction by persons presumed to have inheritable desirable traits (positive eugenics).

Origin of eugenics

First recorded in 1880–85; see origin at eugenic, -ics Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

British Dictionary definitions for negative eugenics

/ (juːˈdʒɛnɪks) /


(functioning as singular) the study of methods of improving the quality of the human race, esp by selective breeding

Derived forms of eugenics

eugenic, adjectiveeugenically, adverbeugenicist, nouneugenist (ˈjuːdʒənɪst), noun, adjective

Word Origin for eugenics

C19: from Greek eugenēs well-born, from eu- + -genēs born; see -gen
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Medical definitions for negative eugenics

[ yōō-jĕnĭks ]


The study of hereditary improvement of the human race by controlled selective breeding.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Cultural definitions for negative eugenics

[ (yooh-jen-iks) ]

The idea that one can improve the human race by careful selection of those who mate and produce offspring.

notes for eugenics

Eugenics was a popular theory in the early twentieth century but is no longer taken seriously, primarily because of the horrors of the eugenic efforts of the Nazi regime in Germany.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.