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Human Intelligence Paperback – January 20, 2011
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- Nathan Brody, Wesleyan University
"Hunt reviews the main topics in the field, from socially relevant and measurement-related affairs to brain research, the interplay between genes and environment, and even the delicate group differences in intelligence (age, sex, and race/ethnicity). Thoughtful discussions follow a clear presentation based on a revision of the available (and relevant) empirical evidence. The resulting text is vibrant, brilliant, and inspiring. Human Intelligence is a significant contribution to future generations. A new wave of intelligence researchers will stand on the shoulders of this giant book."
- Roberto Colom, Universidad Autonoma de Madrid
"An up-to-date, well-rounded, thoughtful, objective, readable book on one of the most interesting areas of psychology."
- Ian J. Deary, The University of Edinburgh
"....Reading the book is like taking a guided tour of the realm of human intelligence, with one of the field's most distinguished elder statesmen as your guide.... If you are interested in the advances that have been made in the science of human intelligence over the past 100 years, this book offers an indispensable guide.... Human Intelligence is destined to become a classic of human intelligence.... In contrast to the many lightweight "pop psych" books written on human intelligence, Human Intelligence is a comprehensive book that examines major research and theory in human intelligence in a scientifically rigorous yet comprehensible way.... well written and clear.... Human Intelligence can be used as a textbook in an advanced undergraduate or graduate course in human cognitive ability. It would be useful to researchers and scholars in psychology and related fields, as well as general readers, who want to know what researchers and scholars in the field of human intelligence have been up to over the past 100+ years and where they are going. In short, if you are interested in the nature of human cognitive ability written by one of the field's leaders, this book is for you."
- Richard E. Mayer, University of California, PsycCritiques
"....a compelling and readable overview of the empirical literature concerning human intelligence.... This book will be of interest to readers in all the social and behavioral sciences, not just psychology.... Recommended...."
--G. C. Gamst, University of La Verne, CHOICE
"....Earl Hunt has written a new book on intelligence, and it is a gem. Everyone who studies intelligence or wants to get a state-of-the-art view on virtually all facets of research on intelligence should read this book.... Importantly, the book is written at a level that can be read by undergraduates, graduate students, professional researchers, and the general public; in short, the book is written in an accessible style.... Another very positive aspect of the Hunt book is his ability to portray potentially difficult material - especially material that can raises hackles on all sides - in a fair and balanced way.... Anyone wishing to be informed on current theory and research on intelligence will want to read this book, and Hunt has given the field many things to ponder and dispute in the years to come. This book will certainly become a reference point for future work on intelligence."
--Keith F. Widaman, University of California, Davis, Intelligence
"Earl Hunt, a psychologist with more than 30 years' research study experience, offers a comprehensive survey of our scientific knowledge of human intelligence. He aims to give a non-ideological view, avoiding a focus on a single theory or social viewpoint. The conceptual status of intelligence is viewed as a collection of cognitive skills, some of which go beyond those evaluated by conventional intelligence tests."
--Times Higher Education
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Top Customer Reviews
1. The hereditarians and the environmentalists both believe that intelligence is influence both by genetics and by environment. They just disagree on the percentages. The hereditarians claims 80% genetic influence while environmentalist claims close to 50% (even Nesbitt does not claim 0%).
2. While Hunt agrees that there are significant intelligence differences among different races, ranking the East Asians, European whites, Hispanics, Middle Easterners , South Asians, and Blacks in that order; he minimize the differences between the East Asians and European whites. He also let stand Lynn and Vanhanen's categories of "sharp IQ differences" (p.440) -- ENAMA (European-North American-North-East Asian), SAME (South American-Middle Eastern), and SASA (South Asian-sub-Saharan African) in that order. He states on page 422 "In summary, there is little doubt that IQ scores and educational data present a consistent ordering of the major racial/ethnic groups...."
3. While Hunt is somewhat critical of Lynn's methodology and his data on sub-Saharan Africa, he is not so critical of Lynn's data on more developed countries of the world and not critical of Lynn's conclusions.Read more ›
The book is divided into eleven logically arranged chapters. He starts with a discussion of the concept of intelligence and how it has been defined. He next describes the main tests that have been used to measure intelligence and gather data. That is followed by several chapters on theories of intelligence, moving from psychometric theories (i.e., conventional-test-based theories) to more speculative and controversial ones. Next we learn about research on brain function and the genetic bases of intelligence, followed by the environment's impact on intelligence. His tenth chapter examines evidence that high IQ is useful in real life (it is!). And then he deals with the mother of all controversies, "The Demography of Intelligence."
The book is packed with tables and charts, which is the main reason why I bought the dead-tree version instead of getting it on my beloved Kindle. Being more of a word person than a numbers person, I greatly appreciated his (mostly) clear explanations of statistical approaches. He thankfully does not assume that the reader is already conversant with statistics or genetics. Another strength of the book is his ability to pick out flaws in experimental design. He's very ready to follow the data wherever it leads (but no farther) and keeps policy discussion to a minimum, which is clearly flagged.
I'm grateful that a veteran such as Hunt took the time to give us this map of the territory.
However, be forewarned that Earl Hunt goes into some mathematical and technical aspects of intelligence that will lose the reader who lacks the adequate background. If you have trouble understanding some of the mathematical arguments, as I did, just do your best and go on to the chapters giving findings understandable by those lacking a thorough background in the field. Also, you may want to buy the hardback version to be able to see the equations and charts better. My kindle version made me struggle to read them. For me, human intelligence is the most exciting and important field of psychology. If you feel like I, you want this book.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
An absolutely excellent and reasonably fair-minded account of intelligence.Published 16 months ago by Poe187
Earl Hunt has written a very well informed and balanced account of the intelligence literature. I would recommend it as a reference work of quality, serving as a benchmark of... Read morePublished on December 18, 2012 by Dr JA Thompson