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Events
21
May Tuesday

The Pseudoscience of Xenophobia: Eugenics and Immigration in America

Overview

Dismantle an oft-cited justification for xenophobia.

Join Daniel Okrent, the first public editor at the New York Times, as he shares his new book, The Guarded Gate. A project five years in the making, the book traces the evolution of eugenics, the belief in a biological hierarchy of humanity, and shows how it became the backbone of restrictive immigration policies and social attitudes in America for nearly half a century. What can we learn from how the pseudoscience of the past informs the xenophobic leanings of today? Okrent is joined in conversation by Joe Nocera, author and business columnist for Bloomberg Opinion.

Detail

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

6:30 pm

Admission

  • General Admission $10
  • Member Admission $5
reserve tickets
The Guarded Gate: Bigotry, Eugenics and the Law That Kept Two Generations of Jews, Italians, and Other European Immigrants Out of America

The Guarded Gate: Bigotry, Eugenics and the Law That Kept Two Generations of Jews, Italians, and Other European Immigrants Out of America

Conversation Catalyst

A forgotten, dark chapter of American history with implications for the current day, The Guarded Gate tells the story of the scientists who argued that certain nationalities were inherently inferior, providing the intellectual justification for the harshest immigration law in American history. Brandished by the upper class Bostonians and New Yorkers—many of them progressives—who led the anti-immigration movement, the eugenic arguments helped keep hundreds of thousands of Jews, Italians, and other unwanted groups out of the US for more than 40 years.

Featuring

  • Daniel Okrent by Raymond Elman-resize

    Daniel Okrent

    Daniel Okrent was the first public editor of the New York Times, editor at large at Time Inc., and managing editor of Life magazine. He is the author of five previous books, including Great Fortune: The Epic of Rockefeller Center and Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition.

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    Joe Nocera

    Joe Nocera is a business columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, and the author of four books, most recently Indentured: The Inside Story of the Rebellion Against The NCAA. His columns range widely over the world of business, with a particular emphasis on the intersection of business and public policy. Prior to joining Bloomberg in 2017, Nocera wrote the Talking Business column for the New York Times.