Deviancy, Disability, and Dependency: The Forgotten History of Eugenics and Mass Incarceration

50 Pages Posted: 19 Mar 2018  

Laura I. Appleman

Willamette University College of Law

Date Written: March 14, 2018

Abstract

Racism, harsh drug laws, and prosecutorial overreach have formed three widely-discussed explanations of the punitive carceral state. These three narratives, however, only partially explain where we are. Neglected in our discussion of mass incarceration is our largely-forgotten history of the long-term, wholesale institutionalization of the disabled. This form of mass detention, motivated by a continuing application of eugenics and persistent class-based discrimination, provides an important part of our history of imprisonment, shaping key contours of our current supersized correctional system. Only by fully exploring this forgotten narrative of long-term detention and isolation will policy makers be able to understand, diagnose, and solve the crisis of mass incarceration.

Keywords: mass incarceration, institutionalization, eugenics, carceral state, disabled

JEL Classification: K14

Suggested Citation

Appleman, Laura I., Deviancy, Disability, and Dependency: The Forgotten History of Eugenics and Mass Incarceration (March 14, 2018). Duke Law Journal, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3140838

Laura I. Appleman (Contact Author)

Willamette University College of Law ( email )

245 Winter St. SE
Salem, OR 97301
United States
(503) 370-6651 (Phone)

Register to support our free research

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
82
rank
270,398
Abstract Views
240
PlumX