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JWST 240 Chapter Notes - Chapter reading: Petrus Camper, Christoph Meiners, Immanuel Kant

Jewish Studies
Course Code
JWST 240

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Racial ideologies and theories were not an exclusively
Germany discovery
The Third Reich became the first state in world history
whose practice was racism
There were different races but they belonged to a single
genus because they constantly produce fruitful children
with one another, regardless of the great varieties which
can be otherwise be found in their form according to
Immanuel Kant
People assumed that physical and psychological differences
between individual and races were an indication of their
relative worth and then they went on to construct a
hierarchy from this information
Pieter Camper measured facial angles of members of
different races in order to categorize them according to
corporal stature and beauty
Christoph Meiners categorized people according to their
beauty and ugliness, fair people were superior to all others
in terms of beauty and intellectual achievements
Darker coloured peoples were ugly and semi-civilized
The complexions of the various human races reflected their
degree of inner illumination
The four great races were those of the dawn (yellow),
day (white), sunset (red) and black - these races were
also related to bodily organs
The whites to the brain and blacks to the genitals
The Slavs and Poles should have considered themselves
fortunate that the Germans had brought them civilization
and the comforts of luxury
Gobineau said that the white, yellow and black races were
of unequal value
He also said that the rise and fall of civilization was
Reading: The Racial State
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