Lothrop Stoddard

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Lothrop Stoddard
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Lothrop Stoddard (29 June 1883–1 May 1950), born Theodore Lothrop Stoddard, was an American political theorist, historian, eugenicist, mass immigration critic, and an author who wrote a number of prominent books on topics related to race.


Stoddard was born in Brookline, Massachusetts in 1883 to a prominent New England family. He attended Harvard College, graduating magna cum laude in 1905, and studied Law at Boston University until 1908. Stoddard received a Ph.D. in History from Harvard University in 1914. He was also an avid stamp collector.

Stoddard was appointed to the Board of Directors of the American Birth Control League, a forerunner to Planned Parenthood by Margaret Sanger. He was also a member of the American Historical Association, the American Political Science Association, and the Academy of Political Science. Stoddard was a lifelong Unitarian and Republican.

Stoddard published many books on the peril of non-White immigration, his most famous being The Rising Tide of Color in 1920. In this book, he presented a view of the world situation pertaining to race, focusing concern on the coming population explosion among non-Whites in the Third World.

In his book, Stoddard stated that the "yellow" nations of Asia presented a dangerous threat to the White world, with the Chinese and Japanese being the only races not ruled by Whites at the time. He stated the then imperialist ambitions of Japan, the then rapid population growth of China, and stated that the Asians represented the only race who could challenge Whites in terms of technological advancement. Stoddard also stated that Muslims, most of whom belonged to the "brown" races, might also be a threat to because of their religious fanaticism.

Stoddard argued that race and heredity were the guiding factors of history and civilization, and that the elimination or absorption of the White race by the colored races would result in the destruction of Western civilization. Like Madison Grant, Stoddard divided the White race into three main divisions: Nordic, Alpine, and Mediterranean.

Predictions in The Rising Tide of Color included: the rise of Japan as a major power, a war between Japan and the United States, a second war in Europe, the overthrow of European colonial rule in Africa and Asia, the mass migration of colored peoples to White nations, and the rise of Islam as a threat to the West {Stoddard was a scholar of Islam and wrote a book, The New World of Islam, on this topic}.

The book receives a veiled mention in F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby . Tom Buchanan, the husband of the book's principal female character, is reading a book called The Rise of the Colored Empires by "this man Goddard" (a combination of Grant's name and Stoddard's). Throughout the book, Tom reveals Goddard's racial theories to the reader.

In The Revolt Against Civilization (1922), he put forward the theory that civilization places a growing burden on individuals, leading to a growing underclass of individuals who cannot keep up, and a 'ground-swell of revolt'. Stoddard advocated immigration restriction and birth control legislation in order to reduce the numbers of the underclass, while promoting the growth of the middle and upper classes. He believed that social progress was impossible unless it was guided by a "neo-aristocracy" made up of the most capable individuals and reconciled with the findings of science, rather than based on abstract idealism and egalitarianism.

After the passing of the Immigration Act of 1924, which severely limited immigration from Southern and Eastern Europe, Stoddard urged for White unity and the assimilation of the immigrants in his book Reforging America. Unlike Madison Grant and others, who concerned themselves with keeping America racially "Nordic", Stoddard stated that the non-Nordic White peoples who were now in the country needed to be Americanized, and believed that the country could continue to function so long as it was mostly White and retained its Nordic, Anglo-Saxon core. Stoddard predicted a coming racial struggle between White civilization and the colored world, and believed that animosity between White ethnic groups and nationalities had to be diminished, if the White race was to survive.

Stoddard authored over two dozen works, most related to race and civilization, echoing the themes of his previous works about the dangers posed to American culture and way of life by mass immigration and the stated threat posed to all of White civilization by the worldwide independence of colored peoples, fueled by Whites' own misguided sentimentalism and support for colored independence.

During World War II, he also wrote Into the Darkness (1940), about the effect of war on Germany. Stoddard was relatively nonpartisan in his coverage of the new regime, but in The Rising Tide of Color Stoddard had blasted the alleged ethnic supremacism of the Germans, blaming the "Teutonic imperialists" for the outbreak of the First World War. He opposed what he saw as the disuniting of the White peoples through intense nationalism within Europe. Nevertheless, after World War II, Stoddard's theories were judged as too closely aligned with those of in Germany and he suffered a large drop in popularity. (Guterl 2004) His death in 1950 from cancer went almost entirely unreported, despite his previously broad readership and influence. (Fant 2000)


  • The French Revolution in San Domingo. New York: Houghton Mifflin, 1914.
  • Present-day Europe, its National States of Mind. New York: The Century Co., 1917.
  • The Rising Tide of Color Against White World-Supremacy. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1920.
  • The New World of Islam. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1921.
  • The Revolt Against Civilization: The Menace of the Under Man. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1922.
  • Racial Realities in Europe. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1924.
  • Social Classes in Post-War Europe. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1925.
  • The Story of Youth. New York: Cosmopolitan book corporation, 1928.
  • Luck, Your Silent Partner. New York: H. Liveright, 1929.
  • Master of Manhattan, the life of Richard Croker. Londton: Longmans, Green and Co., 1931.
  • Lonely America. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, Doran, and Co., 1932.
  • Clashing Tides of Color. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1935.
  • Into the Darkness: National Socialist Germany Today. New York: Duell, Sloan & Pearce, inc., 1940.
  • A Gallery of Jewish Types ("A Pedigree of Judah", 1926) 22 pages

See also

External links

Modern reviews

Works online


  • Guterl, Matthew Pratt. 2004. The Color of Race in America, 1900-1940. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
  • Fant, Jr. Gene C. (2000) "Stoddard, Lothrop", American National Biography Online.
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