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Regents of the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1382)
Alexandra M. Stern (Project Director: July 2018 to present)
Eugenic Rubicon: Sterilization Stories in America

The production of an online resource on the history of eugenics in the United States, containing a privacy-protected data set on approximately 30,000 individuals who experienced involuntary sterilization, along with contextual features such as data visualizations, story lines, and thematic pathways.

We seek support for an implementation phase of a digital project piloted with a NEH HCRR Foundations grant. Eugenic Rubicon: Sterilization Stories in America will make the history of eugenics and sterilization in America accessible to a wide range of users. With an integrated collection of historical records and media assets related to the histories of involuntary sterilization in California and new materials covering North Carolina and Iowa, our hybrid collection will feature data visualizations, framing content, and digital storytelling. It will draw from an extensive dataset of over 30,000 sterilization records (approximately one-half of all known sterilizations in the 20th century U.S.) entered into a HIPAA-protected data capture system. Eugenic Rubicon is a team-based project that includes faculty, graduate students, and digital specialists, and will be developed in consultation with community stakeholders. We seek funding for two years, with an anticipated fall 2021 launch.

Project fields:
History of Science

Humanities Collections and Reference Resources

Preservation and Access

$350,000 (approved)
$350,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
7/1/2019 – 6/30/2023