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Lothrop Stoddard
Born June 29, 1883(1883-06-29)
Brookline, Massachusetts, United States
Died May 1, 1950 (age 63)
United States
Nationality American
Occupation scientist, historian, journalist, anthropologist, eugenicist,

Theodore Lothrop Stoddard (June 29, 1883 – May 1, 1950) was an American political scientist, historian, journalist, anthropologist, eugenicist, pacifist, and anti-immigration advocate who wrote a number of books which are often cited as prominent examples of early 20th-century scientific racism.

Contents

Biography

Stoddard was born in Brookline, Massachusetts in 1883. He attended Harvard College, graduating magna cum laude in 1905, and studied Law at Boston University until 1908. Stoddard received a Ph.D. in History from Harvard University in 1914, and was also an avid stamp collector. He published many unashamedly racialist books on what he saw as the peril of immigration, his most famous being The Rising Tide of Color Against White World-Supremacy in 1920. In this book he presented a view of the world situation pertaining to race focusing concern on the coming population explosion among the "colored" peoples of the world and the way in which "white world-supremacy" was being lessened in the wake of World War I and the collapse of colonialism.

Stoddard's analysis divided world politics and situations in to "white," "yellow," "black," "Amerindian," and "brown" peoples and their interactions.

Stoddard argued race and heredity were the guiding factors of history and civilization, and that the elimination or absorption of the "white" race by "colored" races would result in the destruction of Western civilization. Like Madison Grant (see The Passing of the Great Race), Stoddard divided the white race into three main divisions: Nordic, Alpine, and Mediterranean. He considered all three to be of good stock, and far above the quality of the colored races, but argued that the Nordic was the greatest of the three and needed to be preserved by way of eugenics. Unlike Grant, Stoddard was less concerned with which varieties of European people were superior to others (Nordic theory), but was more concerned with what he called "bi-racialism," seeing the world as being composed of simply "colored" and "white" races. In the years after the Great Migration and World War I, Grant's racial theory would fall out of favor in the U.S. in favor of a model closer to Stoddard's. (Guterl 2004)

Stoddard's theories would help depopularize Grant's Nordicism among western racialists in favor of the beliefs known as "Pan-Aryanism" (Aryanism was the belief in a superior white European race). The post-World War II White nationalist movement would embrace Pan-Aryanism, as it incorporated all whites into a supposed superior race rather than just Northern Europeans.

Some predictions made in The Rising Tide of Color were accurate, while other were not. Accurate ones — not all of which were original to Stoddard or predicated on white supremacy — include: Japan's rise as a major power, a Nippo–American war, a second war in Europe, the overthrowing of European colonial empires in Africa and Asia, the mass migration of non-white peoples to white countries, and, most interestingly, the rise of Islam as a threat to the West because of Muslim religious fanaticism (Stoddard was an Islamic scholar and published the book The New World of Islam in 1921).

An allusion to the book occurs in F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby. Tom Buchanan, the husband of Daisy Buchanan, the novel's principal woman character, is reading a book titled The Rise of the Colored Empires by "this man Goddard." Throughout The Great Gatsby, Tom confusedly espouses Goddard's racial theories; the narrator calls Tom's focus on Goddard's ideas "pathetic."

Stoddard was appointed to the Board of Directors of the American Birth Control League, a forerunner to Planned Parenthood by Margaret Sanger. He was also a member of the American Historical Association, the American Political Science Association, and the Academy of Political Science. Stoddard was a lifelong Unitarian and Republican. During his lifetime, he engaged W. E. B. Du Bois in debate on white supremacy and its assertion of the natural inferiority of "colored" races.

In The Revolt Against Civilization (1922) he put forward the theory that civilization places a growing burden on individuals, leading to a growing underclass of individuals who cannot keep up, and a 'ground-swell of revolt'. Stoddard advocated immigration restriction and birth control legislation in order to reduce the numbers of the underclass while promoting the growth of the middle and upper classes. He believed social progress was impossible unless it was guided by a "neo-aristocracy" made up of the most capable individuals and reconciled with the findings of science rather than based on abstract idealism and egalitarianism.

After the passing of the Immigration Act of 1924, which severely limited immigration from southern and eastern Europe, Stoddard urged for white unity and the assimilation of the immigrants in his book Reforging America. Unlike Madison Grant and others, who only concerned themselves with keeping America racially "Nordic," Stoddard argued the non-Nordic white peoples who were now in the country needed to be assimilated/Americanized, and believed the country could continue to function so long as it was mostly "white" and retained its Nordic, Anglo-Saxon core. Stoddard argued that there would be a coming racial struggle between "white" civilization and the "colored" world, and believed animosity and infighting between white ethnic groups and nationalities had to be diminished if the white race was to survive; as such he was an avid pacifist and was staunchly opposed to both World War I and World War II.

Stoddard authored over two dozen works, most related to race and civilization, echoing the themes of his previous works about the dangers of "colored" peoples against "white" civilization.

World War II

During World War II he spent 4 months as a journalist for the North American Newspaper Alliance in Nazi Germany. He wrote Into the Darkness (1940) about his experiences there. [1] He got preferential treatment by Nazi officials compared to other journalists. For example the Propaganda Ministry insisted that NBC's Max Jordan and CBS's William Shirer use Stoddard to interview the captain of the Bremen.[1][2]

Stoddard was relatively nonpartisan in his coverage of the Nazi regime, but he did express concern for the welfare of the European Jewish community, foreseeing intense violence against the Jews. He was always wary of and often opposed to the Nazis, despite their common support for eugenics. In The Rising Tide of Color Stoddard blasted the ethnic supremacism of the Germans, blaming the "Teutonic imperialists" for the outbreak of the First World War, and the Nazis, of course, simply carried this ethnic supremacism to more extreme ends. He opposed what he saw as the disuniting of White/European peoples through intense nationalism and infighting.

Stefan Kuhl in his book The Nazi Connections paints an interesting picture of Stoddard's time in Germany. He describes among other things Stoddard's visit to the Hereditary Health Supreme Court[1], a court that decided whether people would be forcibly sterilized.

After World War II, Stoddard's theories were deemed too closely aligned with those of the Nazis and he suffered a large drop in popularity (Guterl 2004). His death in 1950 from cancer went almost entirely unreported, despite his previously broad readership and influence (Fant 2000).

See also

Partial bibliography

  • The French Revolution in San Domingo. New York: Houghton Mifflin, 1914.
  • Present-day Europe, its National States of Mind. New York: The Century Co., 1917.
  • Stakes of the War. New York: The Century Co., 1918.
  • The Rising Tide of Color Against White World-Supremacy. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1920.
  • The New World of Islam. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1921.
  • The Revolt Against Civilization: The Menace of the Under Man. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1922.
  • Racial Realities in Europe. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1924.
  • Social Classes in Post-War Europe. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1925.
  • Scientific Humanism. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1926.
  • Re-forging America: The Story of Our Nationhood. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1927.
  • The Story of Youth. New York: Cosmopolitan book corporation, 1928.
  • Luck, Your Silent Partner. New York: H. Liveright, 1929.
  • Master of Manhattan, the life of Richard Croker. Londton: Longmans, Green and Co., 1931.
  • Europe and Our Money. New York: The Macmillan Co., 1932
  • Lonely America. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, Doran, and Co., 1932.
  • Clashing Tides of Color. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1935.
  • Into the Darkness: Nazi Germany Today. New York: Duell, Sloan & Pearce, inc., 1940.

Works online

Modern reviews

References

  • Guterl, Matthew Pratt. 2004. The Color of Race in America, 1900-1940. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
  • Fant, Jr. Gene C. (2000) "Stoddard, Lothrop", American National Biography Online.
  1. ^ a b c Stefan Kühl (2001). The Nazi Connection: Eugenics, American Racism, and German National Socialism. Translated by. Oxford University Press US. p. 61. ISBN 9780195149784. http://books.google.com/books?id=UGYfRv3DWuQC. Retrieved 2009 11 09. 
  2. ^ William L Shirer (1941 / 2004). Berlin Diary. Tess Press / Black Dog & Leventhal. p. 207. ISBN 1579124429. 
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