eugenics

[yoo-jen-iks]
noun (used with a singular verb)
the study of or belief in the possibility of improving the qualities of the human species or a human population, especially by such means as discouraging reproduction by persons having genetic defects or presumed to have inheritable undesirable traits (negative eugenics) or encouraging reproduction by persons presumed to have inheritable desirable traits (positive eugenics)

Origin:
1880–85; see eugenic, -ics

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Collins
World English Dictionary
eugenics (juːˈdʒɛnɪks)
 
n
(functioning as singular) the study of methods of improving the quality of the human race, esp by selective breeding
 
[C19: from Greek eugenēs well-born, from eu- + -genēs born; see -gen]
 
eu'genic
 
adj
 
eu'genically
 
adv
 
eu'genicist
 
n
 
eugenist
 
n, —adj

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

eugenics
1883, coined by Eng. scientist Francis Galton (1822-1911) on analogy of ethics, physics, etc. from Gk. eugenes "well-born, of good stock," from eu- "good" + genos "birth" (see genus).
"The investigation of human eugenics, that is, of the conditions under which men of a high type are produced." [Galton, "Human Faculty," 1883]
Related: Eugenic (adj.).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

eugenics eu·gen·ics (yōō-jěn'ĭks)
n.
The study of hereditary improvement of the human race by controlled selective breeding.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary
eugenics [(yooh-jen-iks)]

The idea that one can improve the human race by careful selection of those who mate and produce offspring.

Note: Eugenics was a popular theory in the early twentieth century but is no longer taken seriously, primarily because of the horrors of the eugenic efforts of the Nazi regime in Germany.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
The topic of the day was eugenics.
He did all this in the name of his brainchild, eugenics.
For instance, eugenics was once all the rage among scientists.
The two friends certainly did share a strong interest in eugenics.
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