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Instructors who are looking for opportunities to expose their students to the ways in which intersectional forms of bias impact policy and legal rules can use Buck v. Bell to explore, for instance, the impact of disability and class on the formation of doctrine. A different intersectional approach might use the discussion of the case as a gateway to a broader conversation about the ways in which race and gender bias structured the implementation of sterilization policies around the nation. Finally, those who wish to examine the global impact of American forms of bias can use this case and the sterilization policies that were enforced in its wake to identify the relationship between those biases and the propagation of the Nazi plan to implement mass genocide. Buck v. Bell provides a unique and rich opportunity to explore the harms that flow from institutionalized racism, classism, ableism, and sexism in the domestic and international spheres.

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Roger Williams University Law Review