Saturday, 22 June 2013

Not getting the point


Samuel George Morton, an early American anthropologist. He fudged his data to suit his preconceived ideas on race, according to Stephen Jay Gould. It later turned out that Gould was the fudger. (source)


Stephen Jay Gould (1941-2002) is still seen as a great evolutionary biologist, if not one of the greatest. Yet the years since his death have steadily tarnished his memory. This is especially so for his best known book, The Mismeasure of Man, which focused on an early American anthropologist, Samuel George Morton (1799-1851). In this book and in an earlier Science article, Gould showed how Morton had fudged his measurements of a collection of skulls to make Europeans seem bigger-brained than Africans.

Gould didn’t re-measure any of the skulls. He reanalyzed Morton’s data … and in the process did far more fudging than Morton had ever done. When a team of physical anthropologists, headed by Jason E. Lewis, located and re-measured half of the skulls, they found only a few randomly distributed errors in the original measurements. Morton had in fact tended to overestimate African skull size (Lewis et al., 2011).

Interestingly, the same conclusion had been reached almost a quarter-century earlier by John S. Michael, a senior at Macalester College in Minnesota. This discovery has been recounted on John’s blog:

I re-measured the Morton skulls in 1986 as part of my undergraduate thesis, which was limited in scope and conducted without the rigor of graduate research. Nonetheless, I determined that my measurements more or less matched Morton’s, and so I described his overall results to be “reasonably accurate.” (Michael, 2013a)

Troubled by his finding, he got in touch with Gould:

In 1986, I mailed my results to Gould, who requested we meet after he gave a lecture in May at the University of Minnesota. Our meeting lasted perhaps five minutes. He told me that I “missed the point,” and abruptly ended the conversation, ignoring me and instead speaking to the man next to him. My recollection is that he did not say goodbye, so I simply walked away. […] After I published my paper in 1988, I sent Gould a copy but got no response. When I wrote him again, he replied that he had lost it and requested another copy, which I sent. I never heard back from him.

Sometime later, Gould gave a lecture at the University of Pennsylvania, after which he was asked a question about my paper. His response was simply that he would not discuss it, and he did not. Gould never mentioned my paper in any of his prolific writings. In 2011, Lewis wrote that, “were Gould still alive, we expect he would have mounted a defense of his analysis of Morton.” Soon after that, Prothero noted, “I’m sure if Steve were alive, he would be able to counter these accusations in his own inimitable way.” And yet these two statements conflict with the fact that Gould actually had two opportunities to counter such accusations, and instead chose to silently disengage. (Michael, 2013b)

Although John Michael’s paper appeared in Current Anthropology, a leading journal in its field, the response was largely silence (Michael, 1988). As recently as five years ago, a science historian had only this to say:

Gould’s interpretation of Samuel George Morton’s cranial data have been questioned by John S. Michael, who, as an undergraduate student at Macalester College, re-measured the skulls as part of an honors project (Michael, 1988). It is not entirely evident that one should prefer the measurements of an undergraduate to those of a professional paleontologist whose own specialist work included some very meticulous measurements of fossil snails. (Kitcher, 2004)

Some people were more supportive, but they were the wrong kind:

Because my findings refuted the writings of Gould, a left-leaning anti-racist Jew, I was celebrated in hate-filled white supremacist web pages, such as davidduke.com and stormfront.org. My work was grossly misquoted in a series of papers by J. Philippe Rushton, a proponent of eugenics from University of Western Ontario. In 2002, he served as the president of the Pioneer Fund, which the Southern Law Poverty Center designated as a “White Nationalist” group because it continues to fund the study of “breeding superior human beings that was discredited by various Nazi atrocities.” I have written this paper in part to document my strong displeasure that my work was used to promote eugenics or racist ideology, which I in no way support. (Michael, 2013a)

Yes, supporters can be as problematic as detractors. But a scientific finding is not invalidated because its supporters are the wrong kind of people. It stands or falls on its own merits. Also, the Southern Law Poverty Center is hardly an impartial source.

John Michael was ultimately vindicated when the Lewis et al. paper came out two years ago. Yet, even then, he never got the credit he deserved, as may be seen in a Nature editorial that raised the possibility of an improper relationship between Lewis’ research team and the University of Pennsylvania:

Of course, Lewis and his colleagues have their own motivations. Several in the group have an association with the University of Pennsylvania, and have an interest in seeing the valuable but understudied skull collection freed from the stigma of bias (Anon, 2011)

No evidence is provided for this curious accusation. In any case, Gould’s fudging had originally been revealed by someone from another university and from another state.  But who remembers?

Conclusion

John Michael found himself in an unequal battle. As a graduate student he was challenging not only an Ivy League professor but also a leading antiracist crusader. It didn’t really matter whether Gould was telling the truth or not. There was something bigger at stake—the war on racism. And that war had to be won.

John indeed “missed the point.” By insisting too much on truth, he was being at best naïve and at worst a willing accomplice of racism—by far a greater evil than falsehood. This was how many well-meaning people saw things in the late 20th century.

References

Anon. (2011). Mismeasure for mismeasure, Nature, 474, 419.
http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v474/n7352/full/474419a.html

Gould S.J. (1981). The Mismeasure of Man. New York: W. W. Norton and Company.

Gould, S.J. (1978). Morton’s ranking of races by cranial capacity: unconscious manipulation of data may be a scientific norm, Science, 200, 503–509.

Kitcher, P. (2004). Evolutionary Theory and the Social Uses of Biology, Biology and Philosophy, 19, 13-14.

Lewis, J.E., D. DeGusta, M.R. Meyer, J.M. Monge, A.E. Mann, and R.L. Holloway. (2011). The Mismeasure of Science: Stephen Jay Gould versus Samuel George Morton on Skulls and Bias, PLoS Biology, 9(6) e1001071

Michael, J.S. (2013a). Stephen Jay Gould and Samuel George Morton: A Personal Commentary, June 7, Michael1988.com
http://michael1988.com/?p=114

Michael, J.S. (2013b). Stephen Jay Gould and Samuel George Morton: A Personal Commentary, Part 4, June. 14, Michael1988.com
http://michael1988.com/?p=203

Michael, J.S. (1988). A new look at Morton’s craniological research, Current Anthropology, 29, 349–354.

31 comments:

sykes.1 said...

If you will read Gould's treatment of Morton, you will see that he compares the means by using the sample standard deviations rather than the standard error of the means. Since the standard deviations are much larger than the standard errors (by the sqrt of n), Gould is able to "refute" Morton's conclusions.

But replacing the standard error by the standard deviation is an egregious error in statistical practice. In fact, since Gould was familiar with statistical theory and practice, what he did was an act of scientific fraud.

Jason Malloy said...

See also William Stanton's The Leopard's Spots: "... Morton himself never equated cranial capacity and intelligence"

So not only did Morton not fudge the data like Gould claimed, he didn't even hold the beliefs that Gould claimed were his motivation.

Sean said...

"Blumenbach did not believe that humans could be separated into distinct races"

IMO Michael ties himself in knots trying to use Blumenbach to show how, in minds of yesteryear, the concept of species has been misunderstood while the concept of race has always been a false one. But everyone always knew that Africans and European produce fully fertile offspring, and donkeys certainly don't with horses.

Regarding physical attractiveness, it is only half the argument (the least palatable half) to talk about Blumenbach's characterisation of whites as more attractive irrespective of sex. Pressures of sexual selection being focused on men in Africa is the aspect more plausible to someone new to the ideas, and it's easier to process too given the real world results are more salient in white societies.

By my way of thinking, humans are a species which can be said to have races, and the definition of races is they are indistinctly demarcated.

I don't see how you can talk about species (distinctly demarcated) without implying there are races. It seems the the received wisdom is any concept of race(s) is now to be regarded as a talisman with power to motivate actions of enormity.

Anti-racism is the dominant community concern, but it is a witch-hunt in the sense that the scientific or pseudo scientific ideas around the concept of race were not decisive in Hitler's success in becoming leader of Germany or his actions thereafter. Many Germans took to communism, then Germany became a national-socialist state; it's now fanatically environmentalist. More than most Europeans, the Germans are attracted to ideas of symbolic community where everyone pulls together and anyone not accepting the community concern (like anti-racism) becomes the enemy designate. Whereupon science and moral philosophy become fixated on finding good reasons for conventional beliefs. The only area of life where genetic inclusive fitness motivates discrimination, or ideas of superiority play a part, is family life, where it is accepted to be legitimate and normal.

When folk wisdom of 'genetic interests' of a racial or ethnic nature conflicts the social heuristic for abiding by community concern, as it now does, then ethnic-genetic considerations are completely powerless to influence society.

Anti-racism attributes an fantastic level influence to the concept. It is like saying ideas of race or racial hierarchy were behind the British conquest of India, so talking about such concepts now could lead to Britain trying and reconquer India.

Sean said...

I wouldn't deny Gould & company have an effect, but I think it is a second order one. He was trying to find good reasons for what was already received wisdom among the knowledge class. The science followed in society's wake rather than steering it. The corollary of that is HBD ideas will not, can not, have any effect on the direction of society.

If European societies are the kind that will survive they will decide to do so then look around for rationales from Science and hermeneutics . It's a bit like human behaviour, which in the real world is hardly ever consciously determined as rational choice theory would predict, and we believe.

Anonymous said...

John S. Michael states that he was "grossly misquoted in a series of papers by J. Philippe Rushton", though he doesn't give any specifics as to how he was misquoted.

B.B.

Anonymous said...

Mc Donalds explain this eternal incident.

Anonymous said...

It would be interesting to see some articles on Elite adoption of foreign/other religions in order to give themselves more flexibility by reducing the power of the current religious hierachy.

Anonymous said...

"This was how many well-meaning people saw things in the late 20th century."

You know, were I 20 or so years old, I suppose I would believe that concluding sentence of this post. I'd think that someone who did what Gould did (and what many others in other fields have done) were "well-meaning"...you know, like the "well-meaning" people who are ramming through an immigration bill in the United States Senate right now, even though they know that what they purport the bill does, in fact, does no such thing.

However, I'm not 20; I'm about to turn 65, and in the intervening years, I've learned that "well-meaning" is almost always a cover for cowardice or egocentrism or both.

Mr. Gould got a lot of mileage out of his "well-meaning" attack on the old analyses of those skulls, didn't he? Yes, he did.

And once a man lies about such non-trivial things, it tells you he has lied before and will do so again if it suits his selfish purposes AND if he thinks he will get away with it.

Never trust him again.

What he did wasn't telling his wife she looked thin in that new dress of hers.

Mike said...

It seems to be about struggling whether humans should shy away from pursuing some types of knowledge. I believe in a scientific spirit, which is a borderline-religious belief. The pursuit of knowledge for its own sake is the only legitimate goal in science‭” and no other criteria besides the truth should matter or be applied in evaluating scientific theories or conclusions. Ashley Montagu and Steven Gould were proven liars, malicious-to-the-hilt persons worked hard toward obstructing physical anthropology research, and this should give an idea of the worthiness of their opinion regarding physical anthropology. Gould was debunked on neoteny applying to human face shape; it was found that neoteny only applies to face size in humans, and this is where East Asians are bigger than Europeans. Regarding the statements that are relevant to this site, John/Jean P. Rushton, went over the studies that compared head (skull) size across populations in a literature review, finding that Northeast Asians have the largest ones on average.East Asian women, who are shorter, on average have larger faces, larger cheekbones, wider noses (fleshy part) and larger jaws/chins/ teeth:

The Korean American Woman's Face
The Korean American Woman's Nose
Metric dental variation of major human populations.
A geometric morphometric study of regional differences in the ontogeny of the modern human facial skeleton

Even attractive Asian women had larger faces (including chins/jaws) and wider noses (fleshy part) than average white women, but the differences were reduced compared to the average Asian woman:
Ontogenetic study of the skull in modern humans and the common chimpanzees
In other words, the faces of attractive Asian women are shifted toward the European average. On the other hand, the faces of attractive white women are shifted away from East Asian norms and toward Northern European norms.It has been shown unambiguously that neoteny only applies to human face size but not shape.
On face size, East Asian faces are visibly larger than European faces, on average, even though East Asians have smaller bodies. East Asian faces are hence less neotenous than European faces. On shape, looking at fossils of species ancestral to modern humans as well as the fossils of species ancestral to all human species and noticing the mid-facial flattening in them. Now, East Asians need not have retained their mid-facial flattening from ancestral species, but the mid-facial flattening of East Asians looks more derived. More robust jaws and cheekbones in ancestral species shift face shape along the lines seen in East Asians or Europeans.

Mike said...

Sean,

S. Kanazawa says:

"From my purist position,‭ ‬everything scientists say,‭ ‬qua scientists,‭ ‬can only be true or false or somewhere in between.‭ ‬No other criteria besides the truth should matter or be applied in evaluating scientific theories or conclusions.‭ ‬They cannot be‭ “‬racist‭” ‬or‭ “‬sexist‭” ‬or‭ “‬reactionary‭” ‬or‭ “‬offensive‭” ‬or any other adjective.‭ ‬Even if they are labeled as such,‭ ‬it doesn’t matter.‭ ‬Calling scientific theories‭ “‬offensive‭” ‬is like calling them‭ “‬obese‭”; ‬it just doesn’t make sense.‭ ‬Many of my own scientific theories and conclusions are deeply offensive to me,‭ ‬but I suspect they are at least partially true. The only responsibility that scientists have is to the truth,‭ ‬nothing else.‭ ‬Scientists are not responsible for the potential or actual consequences of the knowledge they create.‭ Holding scientists responsible for uses and misuses of their research by others is a sure-fire way to detract them from the single-minded pursuit of the truth,‭ ‬because that would make them pause and entertain other criteria besides the truth.‭ ‬If the truth offends people,‭ ‬it is our job as scientists to offend them".

You claim “Regarding physical attractiveness, it is only half the argument (the least palatable half) to talk about Blumenbach's characterisation of whites as more attractive irrespective of sex. Pressures of sexual selection being focused on men in Africa is the aspect more plausible to someone new to the ideas, and it's easier to process too given the real world results are more salient in white societies”

Typical arguments mentioning how living in a white-dominated society has influenced human ideas about physical attractiveness, but you are wrong. Better take a look:

A preference for placement along the ancestral-to-derived discriminant in an European population

ethnic-comparisons

J said...

You got the point and I agree with your conclusion.

Sean said...

Mike, a race's men would be as derived as the women, yet Africans of both sexes in white societies are not equally unsuccessful (relative to Europeans of the same sex) in attracting mates; black African men do quite a bit better than they should if a derived quality in Africans was the decisive factor. As sexual selection can only work on one sex at a time, I think the focus of sexual selection was not the same one in Africans and Europeans, and European men, who anti-racism sees as the privileged sex of the privileged race, haven't been favoured by sexual selection. If you can't see why that that assertion is more palatable to those who matter than its corollary (or a blanket 'ancestral-derived' hierarchy) then you are beyond help.

Anonymous said...

''Typical arguments mentioning how living in a white-dominated society has influenced human ideas about physical attractiveness, but you are wrong.''


''in a white-dominated society''

White??
White-dominated society? Like China is a yellow race-dominated society?

Scott McGreal said...

Anonymous said...
John S. Michael states that he was "grossly misquoted in a series of papers by J. Philippe Rushton", though he doesn't give any specifics as to how he was misquoted.


Michael recently posted a comment providing an example of Rushton quoting him selectively in way that distorts his original meaning. The original blog post also cites three published references to Rushton's work.

Paragon said...

“White-dominated society? Like China is a yellow race-dominated society?”

‬Not regarding to the modeling industry. High-fashion models are overwhelmingly white and,‭ ‬regardless of where they come from,‭ ‬overwhelmingly Northern European types.‭ ‬Some black women that end up as high-ranked high-fashion models are put there to avoid trouble with the civil rights people. Overall,‭ ‬there is just not much interest in using blacks—regardless of whether they are sub-Saharan Africans,‭ ‬American blacks,‭ ‬Australo-Melanesian aboriginals,‭ ‬Sri Lankans and south India people,‭ ‬southeast Asian dark-skinned,‭ ‬etc.‭—‬as high-fashion models,‭ ‬which has nothing to do with difficulties in obtaining sufficient numbers of tall‭ (‬except the southeast Asian dark-skinned and other small-statured blacks‭) ‬and very thin black models. Caucasian (white, European) models are mainly utilized in Asia.

Johnny Sins said...

Sean,

In all populations, sexual selection is acting on both men and women, is an ongoing process every generation, including populations where marriages are predominantly arranged between partners who are effectively strangers to each others. So the questions are not a) sexual selection or not, or b) sexual selection of which sex? The issues are stronger vs. weaker sexual selection with respect to both inter-population and inter-sex comparisons. An imbalance between the proportions of men and women in the population creates an opportunity for stronger sexual selection. Sexual selection is expected to act more strongly on the surplus sex because there are fewer potential partners of the opposite sex for them.

So there is a broad agreement across different groups regarding aesthetic preferences along the hominid-to-derived discriminant.We can approach to this question with a morphometric study for the purpose of developing a more scientific and aesthetic guide that helps facial evaluation of ethnic groups. Therefore we can analyze objective morphopometric guidelines and we will se that Europeans who have more neotenous faces than East Asians. East Asian faces have larger size, larger teeth, more robust jaws and cheekbones, mid-facial flattening, noses wider in the fleshy part, and more protruding mouths. The overall highest frequency of ancestral features of the skull are found in Australian aborigines, especially in unmixed individuals of some tribes such as the Tasmanians, closely followed by sub-Saharan Africans (special head height is shorter; forehead height II is longer; nose length is shorter; lower face height is longer; height of the calva is shorter; forehead height I is longer; and ear length is shorter. In addition, most horizontal measures are wider, ie, eye-fissure width, nasal width, mouth width, and facial width. The nose and ear have greater angles of inclination). The most ancestral form of overall facial flatness (side view) is found among sub-Saharan African populations. Hence you can contrast hominids with Europeans, whom have many features that exaggerate the derived features of humans.
Yes, in Africans, the selective pressures of the tropical farming system, where women did most of the work and polygyny rates were very high, men were under more selective pressure than were women. But the reconstruction of the phylogeny of a biological trait is never easy, because the past cannot be directly observed. This task is made even more difficult by features absent in fossil material. Therefore, hypotheses on the evolutionary history of physical attractiveness are very difficult to verify. The evolution of the human morphology is characterized by its gracilization (and it is higher in European populations), which is commonly explained in terms of natural selection. However, gracilization can also be perceived as neotenization or feminization, and this evolutionary trend can then be explained in terms of sexual selection too.

I do not know why some people can not accept the reality of HBD. Humans differ from each other in various ways because of our different genotype. Science back up the fact that blacks are on average better athletes than whites and Asians (racial differences on muscle fiber type and athleticism), or East Asians are on average more intelligent than other races (using IQ studies as proof), etc….The reason of the inter-populational agreement in the assessment of attractiveness may be that various populations share the same genetically determined preferences. The dependence of the level of agreement with Western beauty attributes on the level of exposure to Western culture was found in Africans [MARTIN 1964], Koreans [LIM and GIDDON 1991] and Mexicans [MEJIA-MAIDL et al. 2005]. Africans [MARTIN 1964, NGUYEN et al. 1998] and Asians [MAGANZINI et al. 2000, CHOE et al. 2004, SOH et al. 2005] prefer those faces of their own group whose proportions are typical of Whites.

Johnny Sins said...

The faces of beautiful black female women depart from typical black female proportions towards those of typical white females:
The Hottest Black Women


Femininity is clearly attractive in female faces, but contrary to the popular maxim that black males are the most attractive (because of higher masculinity than caucasians and Asians), there are inconsistencies regarding whether women prefer more masculine or more feminine looking male faces. Furthermore there are insufficient data to determine whether masculinity is attractive to females, and in either non-Western male faces.

Moreover African-American men, ‬are not the worst off when it comes to success at dating,‭ ‬for which there are at least‭ ‬two‭ ‬reasons:‭ ‬some of their competitors are from ethnic minorities that are culturally more alien to the majority,‬ and what is presumably the factor having the greatest weight,judging by a good number of women that are dating African-American men,‭ ‬whom men of other ethnic backgrounds would be reluctant to date,‭ including African-American women, ‬they are less discriminating.

Whereas some competitors of African-American men are ethnic men with less masculine builds on average‭ (‬Asians‭), this is unlikely to carry much weight as women will emphasize this factor if men are otherwise well-matched on desirable characteristics, and only few will place major emphasis on a more masculine build (‬compared to Asians‭) for various reasons.

Peter Fros_ said...

Sykes,

This is one thing that bothers me with John Michael's conclusion. Morton's errors were minor and randomly distributed. They were the kind of error that honest people can and do make. Gould's errors were different in kind. In trying to be fair and "nuanced", Michael tries to be too understanding in his treatment of Gould. I get the impression of someone who is too easily influenced by the ambient ideological environment, even when he realizes that this environment is itself partly a product of Gould's shenanigans.

Jason,

The same goes for his treatment of Blumenbach. Gould was a second-rate historian at best, yet he became a major influence on science historians.

Sean,

I'll discuss Blumenbach in a subsequent post. Gould saw an ideological trajectory that began with Blumenbach and ended with Hitler. The truth was quite different.

Anon,

When I said "well-meaning", I was thinking of people I knew and associated with back in the 1980s. I remember one university student who argued at length that armed violence was necessary in South Africa and that he had no problem with the killing of innocent civilians to end apartheid.

Was he a "Cultural Marxist"? No. Jewish? No. He was a youth minister for the Navigators -- a conservative Christian youth group.

Anonymous said...

When I said "well-meaning", I was thinking of people I knew and associated with back in the 1980s. I remember one university student who argued at length that armed violence was necessary in South Africa and that he had no problem with the killing of innocent civilians to end apartheid.

Was he a "Cultural Marxist"? No. Jewish? No. He was a youth minister for the Navigators -- a conservative Christian youth group.


Peter,

You've written about things like pathogens possibly influencing human behaviors such as homosexuality and cuckoldry.

Do you exclude the possibility of external influence when it comes to things other than homosexuality or cuckoldry, such as, say, political or cultural views? If so, why?

Anonymous said...

The faces of beautiful black female women depart from typical black female proportions towards those of typical white females:
The Hottest Black Women


I am not sure any of those women would be classed as beautiful. They are all rather plain mulattos. Mulattos are just not good looking, compared to either of their parent races.

Women such as Lorraine Pascal, Gabrielle Union, Joelle Kayembe, Jessica White would seem to me to be more attractive than them. Black women and men are less attractive than Whites, but neither seems more or less attractive than one another.

Sean said...

Peter, there seems to be an impression that WASP intellectuals were hereditarians. Gould tried to encourage the view. It's firmly in the line with the socio-political zeitgeist to discount findings from nineteenth century scientists in relation to racial differences due to their ethnocentric bias.

Gould's 1978 paper 'Morton's ranking of races by cranial capacity. Unconscious manipulation of data may be a scientific norm' established a paradigm which obscured the truth about the extent to which highly influential WASP anthropologists of Morton's time were opposed to any suggestion of a biological basis for different peoples' varying cultural achievements.

Gould told a whoppers: "the cultural milieu of a society whose leaders and intellectuals did not doubt the propriety of racial ranking", Gould is saying there was no attitude similar to modern cultural relativism in the previous (19th) century This is nonsense, because as far back as Diderot praising Tahitian customs, especially supposed sexual freedom (shades of Margaret Mead) there were intellectuals and ethnologists espousing cultural relativism. Seeing natives as equal in mental ability has a very long history in the West. Christian thought about the undivided nature of humanity was the basic tenet of highly influental scientists like James Cowles Prichard. In Canada from Lafitau to John William Dawson Christians saw culture as the determinant of racial differences. Daniel Wilson, from a radical Enlightenment standpoint, was another proponent of all humanity having the same average mental facilities.

Even those highly sympathetic to Gould's thesis have to say that he ignores Horatio Hale. That must have been deliberate omission by Gould; despite the erasure of Hale's contribution to Bosian anthropology, he was to well known for Gould not to know about him.

A lot of people seem to think that Boas was the originator of the anti hereditarian school in North America. Not true. WASPs like Hale were attracted to that style of thinking from the beginning. They originated those ideas.

Anonymous said...

A lot of people seem to think that Boas was the originator of the anti hereditarian school in North America. Not true. WASPs like Hale were attracted to that style of thinking from the beginning. They originated those ideas.

No, people that blame Boas don't blame him for originating anti-hereditarian ideas. Some form of anti-hereditarian ideas has been around forever. It wasn't originated by Boas or by WASPs in the 20th or 19th century.

People blame Boas for the dominance or preponderant influence of anti-hereditarianism in a time when scientific evidence was rapidly mounting against it.

Johnny Sins said...

Anon,

"I am not sure any of those women would be classed as beautiful. They are all rather plain mulattos. Mulattos are just not good looking, compared to either of their parent races. Women such as Lorraine Pascal, Gabrielle Union, Joelle Kayembe, Jessica White would seem to me to be more attractive than them. Black women and men are less attractive than Whites, but neither seems more or less attractive than one another."

I can´t quantify the extent to which black (capoid-congoid) males agree about judgments of female ethnic morphology, maybe their preference are for those female faces having proportions typical of own ethnic group. But also I am sure there is a wide consensus among caucasoid men about whom they find attractive (proportions more typical of Whites). Therefore overall, mulatto (black -caucasoid) or mixed (caucasoid-other ethnic groups) females are rated by caucasoid males as more attractive than negroid (capoid-congoid) females.

If two populations live in different environments, natural selection may evolve a different face in each of them. Therefore, each population may have evolved preferences for a somewhat different face– the most ecologically optimal one for the given environment. Genetic determination of preferences may be:

(1) rigid, e.g., in population A, the genes “say”: “prefer faces of type X”, and in population B, the genes “say”: “prefer faces of type Y”, and the populations have different genes;

(2) conditional: both populations share the same genes, which “say”: “in conditions A, prefer faces of type X, and in conditions B, prefer faces of type Y”.

Johnny Sins said...

*mixed (black-other ethnic groups)*

Sean said...

Gould said acceptance of a biological basis for cultural differences after 1850 was "orders of magnitude" greater than previously; a thoroughgoing consensus in other words. Not true, as should be obvious; without powerful establishment supporters, how could Boas's school of thought have achieved total domination while up against a widespread and hardening consensus for biological explanations. Boas's reputation was built on fieldwork that he got to do through Hale's patronage (See Potlatch). "In the early 1890s Hale chose Franz Boas to conduct fieldwork among the Northwest Coast Indians for the British Association for the Advancement of Science. He not only provided Boas with material support but also corresponded with him regularly, offering guidelines and advice that Boas incorporated into his field approach to general anthropology" . "Hale appears to have played a significant role in purging American anthropology of its racist and evolutionary predilections"

Peter Fros_ said...

"Do you exclude the possibility of external influence when it comes to things other than homosexuality or cuckoldry, such as, say, political or cultural views?"

Anon,

I was referring to the theory that a pathogen may manipulate sexual behavior in different self-serving ways. Pathogens like to spread from one host to another, and the most effective means of transmission is via exchange of body fluids, such as through vaginal or anal intercourse and through French kissing.

But I don't think that's what you're getting at. You're probably alluding to Kevin MacDonald and his argument that Jewish groups and individuals have deliberately manipulated our ideological environment. In my opinion, he ignores the many cases of ideological extremism where Jewish involvement has been virtually nil.

My view is that ideologies of any sort can go off the deep end, to the detriment of everyone involved. Once an ideology becomes a closed belief system that actively removes dissenting views, it will radicalize, becoming nuttier and nuttier -- until it hits the brick wall of reality.

I submit that antiracism is going through this sort of process. It has been placed in an echo chamber of fawning approval, from which all dissenting views are ruthlessly excluded. It has become, so to speak, the spoiled brat of modern discourse. People look on with silent horror, but no one will grab it by the scruff of the neck and give it a good spanking.

Sean,

Before 1850, and even long after, people didn't draw a clear line between culture and biology. There was a widespread Lamarckian belief that the environment could directly affect human nature, and that this effect would be passed on to one's offspring. I suspect people were aware of gene-culture co-evolution but drew the wrong conclusions about what was actually going on.

Sean said...

It's long continued to get nuttier in spite of dissent from scientists of the greatest eminence. The balance of opinion was for the hereditarian position through most of the modern era. See here.

Richard Doll the English epidemiologist said that research established the link between smoking and cancer in 1954, but smoking continued to increase in the UK, peaking in 1970. He thought that the science had began to affect behaviour only when the press took it up.

I wonder. Is the population really a puppet having its strings pulled by a capricious media? Or does society come to decisions in ways that are not amenable to rationality and then the media interest reflects the shift.

Individuals take the really big decisions (like who to marry) through their feelings, not rational deliberation. maybe society is self similar, and falls in and out of love with ideologies.

Anonymous said...

"I wonder. Is the population really a puppet having its strings pulled by a capricious media?"

Yes. TV is just electronic peer pressure - gay marriage being the perfect example.

Ben10 said...

Consciously or not, Gould tried to defend his tribe. What's new?
Maybe he was being dishonnest sometimes, again consciously or not. But personnaly, i will remember him for his Punctuated Equilibrium.

Darwinian Evolution under Gradualism has some problems.

Darwinism postulates a succession and accumulation of changes which are favorised by natural selection. In addition, to fit with a gradualist postulate, these changes are thought to be very small. However, they cannot be very small and at the same time 'very' selected. You have to choose.
This, i believe, was advanced to overcome the problem of the 'unviable' intermediates.
Often we read the same example, that between the reptilian ear perfectly adapted to reptilian head type, and the mammalian ear perfectly adapted to mammals, you have to imagine a succession of some intermediate forms that are not very well adapted to neither the reptilian nor the mammalian ears.
If that's the case, then these intermediate forms should be counterselected. Gradualism overcomes this by postulating very small changes, changes so little that they are not counterselected by Natural Selection. But then, i don't see any reasons why these gradual changes should be positively selected either.
P.E postulates a direct switch from one adapted form to another, without intermediaries. And that is possible with modern genetic and developmental biology.

Anonymous said...

'' Paragon said...
“White-dominated society? Like China is a yellow race-dominated society?”

‬Not regarding to the modeling industry. High-fashion models are overwhelmingly white and,‭ ‬regardless of where they come from,‭ ‬overwhelmingly Northern European types.‭ ‬Some black women that end up as high-ranked high-fashion models are put there to avoid trouble with the civil rights people. Overall,‭ ‬there is just not much interest in using blacks—regardless of whether they are sub-Saharan Africans,‭ ‬American blacks,‭ ‬Australo-Melanesian aboriginals,‭ ‬Sri Lankans and south India people,‭ ‬southeast Asian dark-skinned,‭ ‬etc.‭—‬as high-fashion models,‭ ‬which has nothing to do with difficulties in obtaining sufficient numbers of tall‭ (‬except the southeast Asian dark-skinned and other small-statured blacks‭) ‬and very thin black models. Caucasian (white, European) models are mainly utilized in Asia.''

If the China will need to creative artistic people so 'she' will be import out. Well, chineses has no mongoloid subtype with iq superior and more mental illness incidence and this make all differences, but how i see the east asians like nordics with black straight hair no doubt about rapid capitulation when the West is exhausted.

Sean said...

Anon, TV leads to Adelphopoiesis? Well gazing at icons was blamed for the ideology of Theodore the Studite (who gave the first argument against slavery) "There is a veritable horror of femininity,... female animals are to be excluded from the monastery. Women are seen as tempting, and there is some real fear that any given monk might fall.[...] Theodore makes a clear reference to homosexual attraction when he forbids the abbot from taking a youth alone into his cell." It is interesting that Byzantine Iconoclasm 'specifically targeted the monks, pairing them off and forcing them to marry nuns in the Hippodrome'. Genetic pacification not 2 dimensional images is what leads to tender-mindedness spiraling out of control.

It seemed as Gould was creating an intellectual climate almost singlehanded. However, if his claim of widespread tendentious manipulation of data by scientists were correct, then he would have been opposed by those he was exposing. But following his paper and book on manipulation as a scientific norm, he wasn't subjected to attack by the establishment at all; in 1983 "he was awarded fellowship into the American Association for the Advancement of Science, where he later served as president (1999–2001)". Gould was loaded down with honours and awards.