- Feb 25, 2011
A good, long, debunking of the notion of 'race science' in the Guardian today. Go read it:
A few highlights:
A few highlights:
On dismissing poverty:Although race science has been repeatedly debunked by scholarly research, in recent years it has made a comeback. Many of the keenest promoters of race science today are stars of the alt-right, who like to use pseudoscience to lend intellectual justification to ethno-nationalist politics. If you believe that poor people are poor because they are inherently less intelligent, then it is easy to leap to the conclusion that liberal remedies, such as affirmative action or foreign aid, are doomed to fail.
On the underlying concept:Another of Molyneuxs recent guests was the political scientist Charles Murray, who co-authored The Bell Curve. The book argued that poor people, and particularly poor black people, were inherently less intelligent than white or Asian people. When it was first published in 1994, it became a New York Times bestseller, but over the next few years it was picked to pieces by academic critics.
The politics:Ultimately, race science depends on a third claim: that intelligence is highly heritable, and that different IQ averages between population groups have a genetic basis. If this case falls, the whole edifice from Ashkenazi exceptionalism to the supposed inevitability of black poverty collapses with it.
As I say, well worth a read.Similarly, when Sam Harris, in his podcast interview with Charles Murray, pointed out the troubling fact that The Bell Curve was beloved by white supremacists and asked what the purpose of exploring race-based differences in intelligence was, Murray didnt miss a beat. Its use, Murray said, came in countering policies, such as affirmative action in education and employment, based on the premise that everybody is equal above the neck whether its men or women or whether its ethnicities