Scientifis Racism in the 1936 Berlin Olympics

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Scientific racism, social Darwinism and eugenics at the 1936 Berlin Olympics The 1936 events in the Berlin Olympics perfectly illustrate the Nazi policies of scientific racism, social Darwinism and eugenics in action. In his paper, The Nazi Olympics 1936, Patrick B. Miller points out the significance of the IOC awarding the 1936 games to Germany. This was an attempt to bring Germany back into the world community after its defeat in World War 1. The year was 1931 and Nazism was taking shape in Germany. With Hitler being appointed as chancellor in 1933, the path towards the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games became bound into Hitler’s policies which included scientific racism, social Darwinism and eugenics. Scientific racism, according to Wikipedia, is the use of scientific techniques and hypothesis to sanction a belief n racial superiority, inferiority or racism. In this belief the Nazi hierarchy singled out the Aryan as a master race. Nazi Germany relied heavily on social Darwinism to justify discrimination against non-Aryans such as Jews, Gypsies, Homosexuals and any other groups that did not fit the Nazi profile of an Aryan. Social Darwinism is the application of the Darwinian theory of the survival of the fittest to the human race. Nazi Germanys racially based social policies believed that the Aryan race could be purified by eliminating, by way of sterilization and euthanasia, those social groups that were seen as “undesirable”, this not only included Jews, Gypsies and homosexuals but the mentally handicapped and criminals. At first Germany did not support the games. However, during the international build up to the games the Nazis realised the propaganda value of the Games to promote their concept of the supper race of Aryans. Massive displays of callisthenics and gymnastics by German youths,(as seen in text book page 162) were used to gain the

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