A sterilization program in North Carolina from 1929 to 1974 was specifically designed to "breed" black citizens and met the UN definition of genocide, a study earlier this week said.
Nearly 7,600 men, women and children over the age of 10 were surgically sterilized as part of the "common good" program by preventing people who are considered "stupid" from becoming parents.
Most were forced, but some women who had no other option to use contraception went to sterilization by being declared incapable.
The new paper was published in the American Review of Political Economy.
It examined the years 1958 to 1968, in which more than 2,100 approved sterilizations took place in the 100 counties of the state.
The authors found that sterilization rates increased with the size of the unemployed black population for the period examined, but unemployed whites and other races were not affected in a similar manner.
William Darity Jr., a professor at Duke University and co-author, said the United Nations definition of genocide cites the intent to wholly or partially destroy a national, ethnic, racial, or religious group.
According to the text of the Geneva Convention, this includes "imposing measures to prevent births within the group".
"North Carolina's disproportionate use of eugenic sterilization among its black citizens was genocide," said Darity.
Previous work had shown that the eugenics program disproportionately targeted blacks, but the new paper highlighted the way the program worked and its motives.
"Controlling black bodies and their reproductive decisions is nothing new," added co-author Rhonda Sharpe of the Women's Institute for Science, Justice and Race.
"Our study shows that North Carolina restricted reproductive freedom and used eugenics to disenfranchise black residents."
The state established a foundation in 2010 to compensate living victims of the program.
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