Sarah Walsh's original history of intellectual elites, science, health, and white supremacy in Chile covers the associations between eugenics, the idea of race, women, and Catholicism in the early twentieth century. The Religion of Life: Eugenics, Race, and Catholicism in Chile is Walsh's first book and examines social constructions from the previously unexplored angle of science, medicine, and religion. The last, as the author illustrates, converges with eugenics within secular approaches, the majority of which address the “harmonious relationship” between science and religion and the notion of race as a biological categorization (p. 51). In a period in which the social question emerged and flourished, modernization, urbanization, and the tensions of modern life overlapped with disputes concerning political power voiced by the traditional sectors, with increasing input from secular groups. Here, the traditional charity of the Catholic Church and Christianism began to be seen as an inefficient strategy that merely...
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Book Review| February 01 2023
The Religion of Life: Eugenics, Race, and Catholicism in Chile
The Religion of Life: Eugenics, Race, and Catholicism in Chile. By Sarah Walsh.
Pitt Latin American Series.
University of Pittsburgh Press,
2021. Photographs. Figures. Notes. Bibliography. Index. x,
223pp. Cloth, $50.00.
Hispanic American Historical Review (2023) 103 (1): 200–202.
Claudia Stern; The Religion of Life: Eugenics, Race, and Catholicism in Chile. Hispanic American Historical Review 1 February 2023; 103 (1): 200–202. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00182168-10216903
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