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Human Rights, Biological Citizenship, And Reproductive Policy In Japan’s Leprosy Sanitaria

Susan Burns, University of Chicago

February 28, 2018 · 4:30 pm6:00 pm EST · 202 Jones

Program in East Asian Studies

Beginning in the 1990s, Japan’s policy of “leprosy prevention” was transformed into a human rights issue, a process that culminated in 2001 with the Kumamoto District Court’s order that the government pay reparations to some of those confined in Japan’s extensive system of national leprosy sanitaria. No issue has received more attention than the use of reproductive controls, such as sterilization and abortion, which has been portrayed as evidence of the Japanese state’s concern for eugenics and racial purity. This presentation re-examines the reproductive policy within the national sanitaria.

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