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Sterilization, Parole, and Routinization 

Sterilization, Parole, and Routinization
Chapter:
Sterilization, Parole, and Routinization
Author(s):

James W. Trent

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199396184.003.0006
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date: 28 May 2020

During the years between the Great Depression and end of World War II, intellectual disability, like the rest of the nation, experienced a period of social and economic stress. For two decades the populations of institutions grew dramatically, while during the war years, attendant staff found more lucrative war-related jobs or were drafted. With greater demands for care, yet with fewer resources, the institutions by the late 1940s had become “snake pits.” For these reasons, superintendents during the 1930s and 1940s advocated for what would have been impossible decades earlier. They called for the parole of mentally deficient inmates, especially if those inmates had been sterilized.

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