The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Robert Ritter

Books about eugenics:

"Robert Ritter was the race scientist chosen to direct the [Nazi's] classification of the Gypsies. ... Ritter studied at a number of universities and in 1927 received his doctorate in educational psychology at the University of Munich. Continuing his studies in child psychology, Ritter pursued a medical degree and in 1930 received his doctorate in medicine at Heildelberg. He obtained his medical license in 1930... Ritter's work ... focused on antisocial youth, and he established himself with the publication ... of a study tracing ten generations of families considered to be vagabonds and thieves. ...

...Ritter's career provides evidence that at least some of the scientific work that led to exclusion and eventually to murder was done by Germans without close party connections.


In 1936 Ritter was appointed to head the newly created Eugenic and Population Biological Research Station of the Reich Health Office (Rassenhygienische und Bevölkerungsbiologische Forschungsstelle des Reichsgesundheitsamtes) and thereafter directed his research team from that agency. ... In 1941, as conducting research about Gypsies yielded to implementing practical measures against them, Ritter also became chief of the newly created Criminal Biological Institute of the Security Police (Kriminalbiologisches Institut der Sicherheitspolizei). This institute was located within detective headquarters, the RKPA, the Office V of the RSHA.

Ritter's team of researchers included a number of younger race scientists; the most important were Eva Justin, Adolf Würth, and Sophie Ehrhardt...." (Friedlander, 249-50)

Work Cited

Friedlander, Henry. The Origins of Nazi Genocide: From Euthanasia to the Final Solution. Chapel Hill and London: University of North Carolina Press, 1995.

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