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Literature & Language
Research Paper
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Eugenics and Biological Determination of the Disabled in Nazi Germany (Research Paper Sample)


Students may pick any topic that deals with any social issue related to the course materials or lectures. Students are required to write a sociological paper that is analytical and critical. It is imperative to note that the writing of a sociological paper requires the primary use of scholarly sociological sources, such as sociological scholarly journals, sociological books, and sociological edited collections. The paper must include a minimum of FIVE sociological scholarly sources (books, scholarly journal articles) NOT including the course text books and relevant course materials.
The essay should be 6-8 pages in length, with one inch margins, size 12 font and double-spaced, not including the bibliography or title page. Students are required to include a full bibliography of all materials used in the paper. Late papers will not be accepted without consent from the professor obtained PRIOR to the scheduled due date. It is within the discretion of the professor as to whether or not to grant an extension upon request from a student.
Please note that references that are NOT scholarly sources and will NOT count in your bibliography as scholarly sources include the following:
newspaper articles (i.e., The Toronto Star, The Toronto Sun, The Globe and Mail, The National Post, etc.)
magazine articles (Maclean’s, Newsweek, The Economist, etc.)
encyclopedia references (including Wikipedia)
dictionary references (including Oxford Dictionary and other dictionaries)
non-scholarly websites, blogs, etc.
Students should also note that government websites and statistical data are NOT scholarly sources and will NOT count as one of the five scholarly sources required for this paper. Government websites and statistical data provide information that is NOT scholarly and NOT analytical. Statistics denote a social trend but can be interpreted in numerous and contradictory ways. Statistics themselves are devoid of analysis. Simply stating a statistic does not explain or explore any critical sociological analysis. Similarly, government websites state government policy that is devoid of analysis, and usually reproduces mainstream stereotypes, assumptions and misconceptions. Critical sociological analysis provides a critique of mainstream stereotypes and assumptions. The use of government data requires critical sociological analysis. Please note that these government websites and statistics include, but are not limited to the following:
Statistics Canada
Ministry of Immigration and Citizenship
Government of Canada website
Government of Ontario website
Students should also note that the research paper is a SOCIOLOGICAL paper that requires SOCIOLOGICAL analysis. Scholarly sources are required to be limited to sociological sources. Scholarly sources that are NOT sociological and will NOT be counted as part of your FIVE required sociological scholarly sources include:
Nursing journals and books
Medical journals and books
Economic journals and books
Business journals and books
Social work journals and books
Psychology journals and books
Social psychology journals and books
Behavioural science journals and books
Biology journals and books
Genetics journals and books
Scholarly sociological sources that are ACCEPTABLE are the following:
Race and ethnicity journals and books
Feminist and Women’s Studies journals and books
Sociology of the Family journals and books
Sociology journals and books
Mass Communications journals and books
Criminology journals and books
Work and the Family journals and books
Work and Occupations journals and books
Sociology of Education journals and books
History journals and books
It is expected that your references will include a combination of books, book chapters and journal articles. Scholarly journal articles can be retrieved on-line through the Ryerson Library journal abstracts website, Sociological Abstracts.
Papers that do not include a minimum of five scholarly sociological sources will be assigned an automatic failing grade. Make sure that your sources and your analysis are sociological. Make sure that your sources are SOCIOLOGICAL and NOT psychological, medical or derived from popular mainstream media. Papers that are written from a psychological, medical or mainstream popular media perspective will automatically be assigned a failing grade.
Students should never reference lecture notes in their papers. The reference of lecture notes in essays is improper and shows laziness on the part of the student for failure to research their topic properly. Lectures are based on scholarly sociological research. Any issue raised in lecture must be referenced in its original scholarly sociological source upon which the lecture is based. This means that students are required to seek out the original scholarly publication.
Please note that students who do not submit the research paper will automatically fail the course.
Possible research topics include but are not limited to the following:
The Eugenics Movement/Biological Deterministic arguments
The restructuring of work
Social inequality/social mobility
Poverty in Canada
Canadian immigration policy and Canadian nation-building
Immigration and settlement issues
Aboriginal peoples in Canada
Racialized minorities in Canada (pick a particular racial/ethnic community)
The role of the state
The media and images of popular culture
Racism and policing
Racism and the criminal justice system
Anti-Racism education
Racism and nursing
The feminization of nursing
The medicalization of women/the feminization of mental illness
Social Issues and AIDS (i.e., the social construction of “African AIDS”, women and AIDS)
Racism in Canada (pick a particular issue involving one particular racial/ethnic group)
The women’s movement in Canada (first wave, second wave or third wave feminism)
The domestic labour debate/gender division of labour in the family
Women and part-time work
The feminization of work
Women and the “glass ceiling”
Men, masculinity and sport
Women, femininity and sport
The social construction of sex
The social construction of heterosexuality/homosexuality
Race, class and gender (i.e., Black feminist thought, South Asian feminist thought, Muslim feminist thought)
Grading Criteria for Research Essays:
Your research paper is worth 30% of your final grade and will be evaluated on a 30-point scale based on the following criteria:
Content: (15 points) adequately addressing any social issue from a critical, analytical, sociological perspective, and critical analysis that considers the strengths and the weaknesses of the research sources in light of the paper’s main research argument. Avoid relying too heavily on summarizing and/or describing your research sources, or simply describing a problem. You must engage the sources and critically apply them to your argument (i.e., thesis). Your analysis should address how and why this social problem/issue occurs. Your paper should emphasize HOW this social phenomenon becomes normalized in our society. In other words, you need to examine the social process by which this social phenomenon occurs and is legitimated in our society as normative.
Clarity of Argument: (5 points) focus, direction and logical organization and integration of ideas in a well structured argument. Does your paper have a thesis statement? Is it a thesis?
Structure and Organization: (5 points) paper should include the following components:
Introduction: clearly stating your thesis/research argument and the specified points you will be arguing in the paper. Your thesis statement should be obvious and located in your introduction.
Body of Paper: where you develop your argument with support from your reference sources.
Conclusion: links your main ideas together.
Proper referencing style and grammar: (5 points) The paper should not have more than one, maximum two direct quotes, with social science citations throughout. It is expected that your paper will have social science citations referencing the sources used throughout each paragraph of the paper. Both direct quotes and an author’s ideas must be referenced in your paper using social science citations. Social science citations are located as the end of the direct quote or an author’s idea. Social science citations are located inside brackets and include the author’s last name, the year of the publication, and the page number. For example, (Miles, 1989). APA is the preferred referencing style. An on-line style guide of how to use APA is available at the Purdue Online Writing Lab (Opens new window). All referencing citations must include the author’s name and the year of the publication. Your references in your bibliography must include the author’s name, the year of the publication, the exact and complete title of the article/book, the publisher’s name, the city of publication, and (in the case of a journal article or book chapter) page numbers. Please note that essays that do not include the required FIVE scholarly sources (as defined in the terms above) will automatically be given a failing grade.
Bibliographic References: The following are examples of proper bibliographic reference styles for books, edited collections, and journal articles.
Book Reference Example: Miles, Robert. (1989). Racism. London: Routledge.
Edited Collection Reference Example: Mitchell, Allyson & Karaian, Lara. (2005). Third Wave Feminisms. In Nancy Mandell (Ed.). Feminist Issues: Race, Class and Sexuality. Fourth Edition. Toronto: Pearson Education Canada Inc.
Journal Article Reference Example: MacKinnon, Catherine A. (1983). Feminism, Marxism, Method, and the State: Toward Feminist Jurisprudence. Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society. 8(4):635-658.


Hitler was obsessed with creating a pure Aryan race. He wanted to weed out any ‘impurities’ and create a master race. Adolf Hitler believed his people had become weak and corrupted by dysgenics, infusion of degenerate elements into the bloodstream CITATION Fly17 \l 1033 (Flyer, 2017). He created a program that was structured to eliminate anyone who could potentially be a threat to the Aryan race. He considered the other people as ‘life unworthy of life.’ The people he targeted were dissidents, prisoners whom he referred to as ‘degenerates,’ anyone with an identifiable physical disability, such as those living with epilepsy, schizophrenia, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, the deaf, the blind, and the gay people. He believed if these people sired any child with his chosen race, they would propagate those ‘unwanted’ elements into future generations. The only way to avoid ‘contaminating’ the pure race was either through euthanasia or forced sterilization. In the course of his reign, Hitler killed and sterilized millions of other races, ethnicities, and anyone with a diagnosed physical disability in Europe. He indoctrinated the people with the racism dogma to help in eliminating impurities on their land.
He established killing centers where those worthy of death could be taken and often killed without their consent. Later, he introduced gas chambers to do ‘mercy killing.’ Women were sterilized by either crushing, severing or removal their fallopian tubes or the uterus. In some cases, they used x-rays as they liked experimenting with new technology on living people. Some women were sterilized even with almost nine months of pregnancy, and thousands died from their wounds. Some methods were considered ineffective, and therefore some people would undergo the procedure twice. Other procedures were done without anesthesia such as a laparotomy.
Nazi Germany Eugenics Program
Eugenics was probably a foreign idea to the Germans. They modeled this idea from the US California, where they also practiced racial cleansing, though in the US it was not for the general population, but for those who were in prisons and psychiatric centers. Hitler, however, created a legal framework through which he could perform heinous acts within the provisions of the law. The law also allowed him to prosecute the uncooperative members who were sympathetic of the degenerates and did not report them to the authorities.
On July 14, 1933, Hitler passed a ‘sterilization’ law that was dubbed the ‘law for the prevention of Hereditarily Diseased Offspring.’ This law allowed the government to compulsorily sterilize any individual who in the opinion of the Genetic Health Court’ had one or more alleged genetic disorders. The jury consisted of a judge, a medical officer, and a medical practitioner who evaluated the evidence and determined at their discretion if the person would be sterilized. An appeal could be filed in the ‘higher genetics health court’ which was final. If the plaintiff is found to have one of the alleged diseases some of which are not even genetic, he/she was sterilized, and the use of force was permissible. This law was complementary to the law of simplification of the health system enacted in 1934. This law allowed for the creation of an information center for racial hygiene, and it outlined the evaluation standards to deem those fit to be arraigned in the genetic health court.
In 1935, an amendment to the law was done which authorized forced abortions to women who were otherwise subject to sterilization. It also a...

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