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Julius Paul: Political Science
Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Dr. Julius Paul
Dr. Julius Paul

See the family's article published in the Dunkirk Observer obituary section.

FREDONIA — Julius Paul, Ph. D., a professor emeritus at Fredonia State College and a nationally known eugenics scholar, died Friday, Sept. 26, in the Chautauqua County Home, Dunkirk. He was 82.

Dr. Paul, a political science professor, was best known for his 20-plus years of research into eugenics and the insight it provided into flawed government policies allowing state sanctioned sterilizations.

It was Dr. Paul’s landmark work that led states to abolish those policies.

“His work was really the cutting edge when I started with all this,” Paul Lombardo, a eugenics researcher and professor of law at Georgia State University, said in a 2003 Buffalo News profile of Dr. Paul. “He laid the groundwork for people like me.”

Dr. Paul’s research helped discredit eugenics and the theory that certain traits such as feeblemindedness and perversion are hereditary and that sterilizing people who possess them will prevent those problems from spreading.

Before coming to Fredonia in 1970, Dr. Paul taught at Ohio State University, Kenyon College, Southern Illinois University and Wayne State University. He retired from SUNY Fredonia in 1992 as professor emeritus of political science.

A Cleveland native, Dr. Paul’s education ranged from a Ph. D. in political science from Ohio State University in 1954 to a bachelor of arts in political science from the University of Minnesota in 1947, with additional graduate studies at the University of Hawaii, Harvard University and the University of Denver.

His passion for personal freedom extended beyond the classroom. He was a civil rights activist in the early 1950s, worked to desegregate restaurants in Columbus, Ohio, and was an opponent of the Vietnam War. He also was an advocate for the mentally ill and served on the Board of Visitors of the Gowanda Psychiatric Center.

Active in the Fredonia community Dr. Paul was a member of the Festival Chorus, Catch Club and the Adams Art Gallery.

Survivors include his wife, the former Laura Rankin; three sons, Derrick, Aaron and Brian; two daughters, Sara and Allegra; and a brother, Louis.

A memorial service will be scheduled by the family and announced to the campus community at a later date.

 

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