Marie Stopes

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Dr. Marie Stopes was an author and social activist who is perhaps best known for the Marie Stopes Clinic in London, one of the best reproductive health centres in the UK. She is also famous for her efforts to promote birth control for women in the early 1900s.

She was also a staunch supporter of eugenics, and did a fine line in wackiness.

Marie Stopes and eugenics[edit]

Dr. Stopes strongly opposed reproductive rights for those who carried "inheritable defects." She urged the British National Birth Rate Commission to support mandatory sterilization of prospective parents who were "diseased," "prone to drunkenness," or "of bad character." Stopes wrote that the "sterilization of those totally unfit for parenthood be made an immediate possibility, indeed made compulsory."[1] She went on further to say the were she in charge, she would "legislate compulsory sterilization of the insane, feebleminded...revolutionaries...half-castes."[2]

The mature and the conditions under which they came into being, discover where lie the chief sources of defect, and eliminate those sources of defect from the coming generation so as to remove from those who are still to be born the needless burdens the race has carried."
—Dr. Marie Stopes, Racial and Imperial aspects (1920)

She also opposed the marriage of her son because his bride-to-be wore eyeglasses.[citation needed]

Marie Stopes and sleep[edit]

Stopes recommended sleeping in a north-south position.

It is comparatively unimportant whether the head or feet are at the north end of the bed, but it is very important that...the body should lie...south-north or north-south."
—Dr. Marie Stopes, Sleep (1956)

Marie Stopes and spooge[edit]

Stopes became a big fan of the man chowder in her later life and held that, when absorbed by the woman, it had a "tonic, health-giving effect." [3]


  1. Dr. Marie Stopes, A Radiant Motherhood (1920)
  2. Dr. Marie Stopes, The Control of Parenthood (1920)
  3. From In the Name of Science, Martin Gardner (1957) p.161