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Blinded by ScienceThe Social Implications of Epigenetics and Neuroscience$
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David Wastell and Susan White

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781447322337

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447322337.001.0001

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Biology and the drive for human improvement

Biology and the drive for human improvement

Chapter:
(p.3) One Biology and the drive for human improvement
Source:
Blinded by Science
Author(s):

David Wastell

Sue White

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781447322337.003.0001

This chapter reviews the historical origins of the project of human improvement, from the Enlightenment onward, coming to the fore especially during the Victorian era. It traces the ascendancy of developmental psychology and ‘infant determinism’ which has always been a key part of the project of human improvement. Attachment theory has played an important part in this this; we draw attention to the contradictions and inconsistencies in this influential body of thought.

Keywords:   social reform, utopia, eugenics, developmental psychology, attachment theory

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