Saturday, October 19, 2013

Japan: A north-south cline in mental and behavioral traits


 
IQ, height, and homicide rate in Japan (red = lowest value, light blue = highest value) (Kura, 2013). The longer and harsher the winter, the greater the need for cognition and male solidarity?


The Japanese are descended from the intermixture 2900 to 1500 years ago of indigenous hunter-gatherers, the Jomon people, with incoming farmers from East Asia, the Yayoi people.  Even today, the Japanese still show an east-west genetic cline, with East Asian haplogroups being most frequent in western regions that face the Korean Peninsula (Kura, 2013).

In addition to this east-west cline, there is also a north-south cline for physical traits like height and skin color. Kura (2013) shows that the Japanese are taller and lighter-skinned the farther north they are. Interestingly, the same study shows a north-south cline in mental and behavioral traits, notably IQ, homicide rate, and divorce rate. In Japan, latitude correlates positively with IQ and negatively with homicide rate and divorce rate.

This north-south cline seems independent of the east-west one. If it likewise has a genetic basis, the reason cannot be varying degrees of Yayoi/Jomon intermixture. The reason must be differences in the way natural selection has acted on the Japanese over the past 1500 years.

Of course, this north-south cline can also be explained on cultural grounds. The climate is milder in southern Japan, and farmers have less need to store food for the lean times of winter and early spring. Consequently, they tend to live more in the present and don’t plan ahead as much. Men are also less necessary as hunters who can bring food when the ground is frozen. Because women are more self-reliant food-wise, they depend less on their male partners. For the same reason, the cost of supporting a second wife is lower for men. There is thus more polygyny, more male-male rivalry for access to females, and less male solidarity. State formation becomes more difficult, and there is no longer a higher authority that can impose a monopoly on violence and thereby pacify social relations.

But this culturalist explanation hardly applies to modern Japan, or even the Japan of the past century or so. To the extent that culture has created this mental/behavioral cline, it has probably done so through gene-culture co-evolution. This is the explanation that Kura (2013) favors. The longer and harsher the winter, the greater the demands on cognition and the sexual bond … and the higher the likelihood of survival and reproduction for those who can meet such demands.

Kura also sees this Japanese north-south cline as evidence that evolution did not stop with the emergence of behaviorally modern humans some 100,000 years ago. Evolution has actually been proceeding at a faster rate: 

This conclusion would be in line with the Hawks, Wang, Cochran, Harpending, and Moyzis (2007) idea of ever-accelerating human evolution. They insist that more and more beneficial mutations swept populations, after the advent of agricultural civilizations with metallurgy, letters and complex hierarchical organizations. The Japanese north–south gradient in height and intelligence can be evidence that modern humans have evolved to higher intelligence within the last two millennia. (Kura, 2013)


References 

Hawks, J., E.T. Wang, G.M. Cochran, H.C. Harpending,  and R.K. Moyzis. (2007). Recent acceleration of human adaptive evolution. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, 104(52), 20753–20758.
http://www.pnas.org/content/104/52/20753.full 

Kura, K. (2013). Japanese north–south gradient in IQ predicts differences in stature, skin color, income, and homicide rate, Intelligence, 41, 512-516.
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0160289613000949
 

30 comments:

Sean said...

"JAPANESE researchers have noted that even in their relatively small country, suicide rates vary with latitude" Like the Inuit. (Please note: the northern suicide rates are highest in the sunniest times of year)

XXXXXXXXXXXXX said...

I found it interesting that Akita prefecture scored the highest IQ. Akitans are very well-regarded in Japan, and have a reputation for beautiful women. Kanazawa has shown that beauty correlates with IQ, so that is another regional difference that might be worth investigating.

As a sidenote about the author Kenya Kura, he helped translate John Philippe Rushton's book Race, Evolution, and Behavior into Japanese. He actually showed up in a Stormfront thread discussing this paper and complained "PC Japanese academics never accept the [Rushton's] thesis". So much for the Japanese being less beholden to political correctness than Westerners.

B.B.

Sean said...

At high latitude the selection is for mechanistic cognition so Japanese are incredibly intelligent. But they are also dumb as a stump in 'social intelligence' (what Badcock calls 'mentalistic cognition'). Case in point Kanazawa being broken on a wheel for saying, in so many words, that black women were physically unattractive. He did not realise what would happen, because that kind of thinking is difficult for a Japanese.

The Cree were always quick to think that their troubles were caused by evil Inuit magicians.

Anonymous said...

But they are also dumb as a stump in 'social intelligence' (what Badcock calls 'mentalistic cognition'). Case in point Kanazawa being broken on a wheel for saying, in so many words, that black women were physically unattractive. He did not realise what would happen, because that kind of thinking is difficult for a Japanese.


The Japanese are very careful about social relations and about not saying things to offend people.

I think Kanazawa knew what kind of response he would get. He wanted that kind of response and the fame and notoriety that comes with it.

Anonymous said...

He actually showed up in a Stormfront thread discussing this paper and complained "PC Japanese academics never accept the [Rushton's] thesis". So much for the Japanese being less beholden to political correctness than Westerners.

Rushton catalogs racial differences, but that's not the thesis of the book. Rushton's thesis is to apply r/k selection theory to human races. The Japanese academics may accept Rushton's catalog of racial differences, but they may not accept his thesis.

XXXXXXXXXXXXX said...

Anonymous said...
Rushton catalogs racial differences, but that's not the thesis of the book. Rushton's thesis is to apply r/k selection theory to human races. The Japanese academics may accept Rushton's catalog of racial differences, but they may not accept his thesis.

Maybe, but if that were the case that his colleagues accept genetic differences between the races but were just skeptical of the specifics of Rushton's theory about them, then would Kura be specifically criticizing them for being PC?

B.B.

Sean said...

"The Japanese are very careful about social relations"

Yes they conscientiously try to be, and so the social deficits are not obvious in a group of Japanese. When they are not dealing with people like themselves, but in contact with mentalistic peoples who are extremely quick to suspect others' motives the deficits of Japanese can be seen. One of Kanazawa's posts before the one about black attractiveness was called “If Beautiful People Have Daughters, Why Do Posh and Becks Have Three Sons?
The answer: Because Posh is a whore.” He changed that title, presumably because he got flak, so he was not after controversy.

No, he did not know what was going to happen. When they go abroad it becomes obvious that the Japanese are a nation of Kaspar Hausers. They don't pick up on social cues, or suspect the motives of others.

Anonymous said...

One of Kanazawa's posts before the one about black attractiveness was called “If Beautiful People Have Daughters, Why Do Posh and Becks Have Three Sons?
The answer: Because Posh is a whore.” He changed that title, presumably because he got flak, so he was not after controversy.


He's been out of Japan for decades and consciously cultivates himself as some sort of non-PC, renegade scientist who will say outrageous things. He deliberately tries to act non-Japanese by saying provocative things and trying to get a rise out of people. He knows exactly what he's doing. This is obvious so I don't even know why you're disputing it.

Anonymous said...

Maybe, but if that were the case that his colleagues accept genetic differences between the races but were just skeptical of the specifics of Rushton's theory about them, then would Kura be specifically criticizing them for being PC?

I would imagine the kind of Japanese man who would translate Rushton's work, which is unknown to most people in the US and the West, into Japanese and show up in Stormfront threads would tend to be quite liberal about throwing the charge of "PC" around.

Sean said...

Letter of apology by Dr Satoshi Kanazawa. Like he enjoyed that.

Sean said...

And especially this bit.

Reader said...

Slightly OT, but nonetheless an interesting article about Japan in The Guardian today: young people under 40 "have stopped having sex" according to the article; the country is going through a bizarre period where young men and women loathe intimacy and sex and actively avoid romance.

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/20/young-people-japan-stopped-having-sex

Anonymous said...

Letter of apology by Dr Satoshi Kanazawa. Like he enjoyed that.

I think he did enjoy the whole episode. Like I said, he deliberately poses as a renegade scientist who says provocative things. It's clearly affected.

JayMan said...

And, just in time, see this:

Why have young people in Japan stopped having sex?

High IQ does seem to go hand-in-hand with low sex drive. Perhaps the Japanese are K-selected to their own detriment.

I will note that I don't see a marked north-south or east-west pattern in fertility:

Another Tale of Two Maps | JayMan's Blog

Sean said...

Suicide is commoner in the north, I bet anorexia is too. (Women in Japan are consuming fewer calories than they did in WW2.)

Not eating or having sex may be related to self control, needed to plan ahead. Anorexics avoid sex.

lecturaszen said...

Not eating or having sex may be related to self control, needed to plan ahead

I would bet for a combination of asymmetric cultural transmition (mothers have more influence in their kinds than fathers) and an oversupply of males.

Peter Fros_ said...

XXX

Unlike Philippe Rushton, I don't believe that human biodiversity can be explained by a single unified theory (other than the theory of evolution by natural selection). Rushton (like other evolutionary psychologists) thought that human nature assumed its final form in the Pleistocene. This is contrary to the genetic evidence, which shows that human evolution actually accelerated after the Pleistocene, this being a time when humans were moving into new cultural environments and not new physical environments.

Showing up on a Stormfront thread is at best naive and at worst stupid.

Sean,

Satoshi Kanazawa is probably in the best position to explain his position. My impression is that he knew he was getting into hot water.

JayMan,

What we're seeing in Japan is happening in Western countries. Japan is farther down the road because most of the population has no religion or belief system that can stop this behavior from getting out of hand. In Japan, like in the West, a genuine sexual/procreative relationship is becoming too expensive for most people.

Sean said...

It seems to me Britain is the country that is furthest along the Western irreligious path. So why does it not have a birthrate as low as Japan (even allowing for immigration I don't think it does).

I'm not saying it's the only or even main factor, but Japanese are mechanistic in their cognition and technologically adept. By my way of thinking that has something to do with Japan's materialism and its low birthrate. Wealthy materialistic countries have low birthrates, but is there a line of causation there, or are both just reflections of a certain personality type?

Anonymous said...

"It seems to me Britain is the country that is furthest along the Western irreligious path. So why does it not have a birthrate as low as Japan (even allowing for immigration I don't think it does)."

Chavs.

A certain segment of the white population is capable of moving further into the r-selected spectrum than Japanese people are willing to go. Chavs aren't having tons of kids, but they are having kids that they can't afford to provide the very best for.

This might be a coincidence or a product of non HBD related circumstances though.

Bones and Behaviours said...

Commentary on this abstract, please? Although this paper isn't attributing mate selection directly to a specific infection, it still suggests that a history of childhood infections (such as diarrhoea) has a long term affect upon mate selection later in life.

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S109051381300069X

Also returning to the subject of the Japanese birthrate, and also those of the UK, a long life expectancy may determine abstainence from sex (or, at least, from reproduction). In the UK people from 'chav' backgrounds often and unfortunately have relatively high and early mortality due to their following unhealthy lifestyles. Where people are growing up seeing their relatives die of lung cancer and heart disease at a comparatively early age, a presumption of their own early mortality will have an effect upon their procreative rates.

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1090513813000779

Peter Fros_ said...

Sean,

Japan seems to be more irreligious than Great Britain:

"Fully 44 percent of Americans attend church once a week, not counting funerals, christenings and baptisms, compared with 27 percent of people in Great Britain, 21 percent of the French, 4 percent of Swedes and 3 percent of Japanese."

http://ns.umich.edu/new/releases/1835

I assume that the term 'church' includes any place of workship, e.g. Buddhist and Shinto temples.

Do we have information on native British fertility?

Bones and Behavior,

Interesting abstract. I'll read through the entire paper before saying anything further.

Sean said...

"The climate is milder in southern Japan, and farmers have less need to store food for the lean times of winter and early spring. Consequently, they tend to live more in the present and don’t plan ahead as much."

The behavioural trait most relevant to acting with a view to future resources is anxiety. Lynn: "North East Asians obtain higher scores on anxiety than Europeans".

Anonymous said...

What we're seeing in Japan is happening in Western countries. Japan is farther down the road because most of the population has no religion or belief system that can stop this behavior from getting out of hand. In Japan, like in the West, a genuine sexual/procreative relationship is becoming too expensive for most people.

Right. It's a similar situation. Young men
can't afford to form a family. The difference is that Japan is racially and ethnically homogeneous, and the differences in reproductive rates are still largely confined within the same group. While the West is no longer homogeneous, and you have a situation where certain people, ethnicities, and races are making out like bandits while native Western reproduction falls. So in the West, this situation can't even be addressed completely honestly, as that would mean acknowledging what amounts to a breeding competition taking place, and because those who are making out like bandits have a genetic interest in this situation not being addressed.

Bones and Behaviours said...

Is it true that Okinawans have a higher birthrate than the Yamato Japanese on the mainland?

And is it also true that they have a higher level of religiosity expressed by the Ryukyuan folk religion?

The first question is about a mainland Japanese stereotype about Okinawans (which are actually similar to English stereotypes about the neighbouring Welsh), and the second one is my impression from reading anthropology texts.

Sean said...

BBC Radio interview with Eamonn Fingleton start at 6min 10 secs here Slow to load, but he makes some interesting points including US superiority in economic growth being an illusion created by services such as lawyers and population growth.
"JAPAN'S ... adopted a policy of population reduction. This was kicked off with the Eugenic Protection Act of 1948." (Japan was the first country outside USSR to legalise abortion).

Anon, assuming there was any available method for a modern democracy to do it--dubious; why would governments want to increase their non-immigrant community birth rates? Like Japan Britain and the US have no Empire to populate. Unlike Japan, there is not much manufacturing, the costs of which are too high because of Western governments governments' policy. Their countries have 'green' high cost energy while they sell cheap energy at massive profit. See here and here.

Like Peter said, governments go for economic growth and the only way they know and like (one which acts retroactively on immigration and native birthrate) is: pump up the housing market. "THIRD, there would have been efforts to spur another round of high economic growth through easy credit and deregulation, like the Bush Boom of the past decade. Such a boom would have done little to raise the average worker’s wage, while doing a lot to spur another influx of low-wage labor for work in construction, agriculture, and services … to mow the lawns of the rich and to build them ever more monster homes."

The main difference between left and right is that the right tend to procede by hysterical boom and bust.

Anonymous said...

Anon, assuming there was any available method for a modern democracy to do it--dubious; why would governments want to increase their non-immigrant community birth rates?

I never said they wanted to. I said that Japan and the West differ due to the West's heterogeneity.

Anonymous said...

I assume that the term 'church' includes any place of workship, e.g. Buddhist and Shinto temples.

I don't think there is a mandatory or encouraged weekly service in Buddhism or Shinto like there are in Abrahamic religions, so this data may not be very useful here.

Anonymous said...

"This is contrary to the genetic evidence, which shows that human evolution actually accelerated after the Pleistocene, this being a time when humans were moving into new cultural environments and not new physical environments."

Everywhere?

I think the r/k idea is very useful if you look at it in terms of how long ago different populations shifted from r to k and look at it in terms of the *proportions* of r and k behavior within a population.

e.g. (possibly) Burakamin, Paekchong, Cagots etc

.

"It seems to me Britain is the country that is furthest along the Western irreligious path. So why does it not have a birthrate as low as Japan (even allowing for immigration I don't think it does)."

Some of it is immigration but a lot is the beautiful chavs.

The elite's immigration policy on its own has the effect of slowly wiping out the indigenous working class population but their welfare policies which subsidize large immigrant families have back-fired to a certain extent because the English working class were still half-savage before the immigration genocide began and so some of them have reverted back to r type behavior very rapidly under the incentive of the welfare policies.

.

"why would governments want to increase their non-immigrant community birth rates?"

They didn't. It was a mistake and there's a lot of gnashing of teeth in the media about it - entirely directed at chavs and not at all at the large immigrant families on welfare.

Anonymous said...

What did the sneaky eskimo wizards think? That's the $64 question.

Anonymous said...

Reading the Stormfront comments makes me doubt this guy's validity as a researcher. He seems like a real oddball with open personal motives. While the paper seems sound on certain variables like height, skin color and crime, it makes me question other aspects, like IQ.

He was able to translate REB into japanese, and possibly this paper as well, but his english is terrible in the SF thread, and the fact he'd even comment on a site as horrible as that says something about his social awareness. He also calls REB a great book and Lynn's work heroic, and seems to have a grudge against the Chinese and Koreans:

" I know the Chinese are more openly proud of their higher intelligence (with scarce creativity). I am very proud of Japanese subculture of Anime and Manga and other subcultures than Pan East Asian Confucious total ;****!!"

" Hope that you white gays understand the racial difference that Chinese and Koreans are smartest to learn anything but least creative and contributing almost nothing to human culture , probably because of the widely and longly -accepted Confuciusism . period. "

More proud of japanese cartoons and comics than the Confucian legacy, and while believes koreans and chinese are smarter than japanese, contribute almost nothing to human culture because of Confucianism. There's some truth in that of course, but to that extent?