66 of 75 people found the following review helpful
A must-read for those seriously interested in race issues.,
By A Customer
This review is from: Bell Curve: Intelligence and Class Structure in American Life (A Free Press Paperbacks Book) (Paperback)I picked up "The Bell Curve" three years ago, and resolved to read it cover to cover, which I did. Quite a lot to absorb, but ultimately worth the time investment. I wouldn't suggest it for those who have less than a passing interest in race issues, since the authors took a measured and scientific approach to an otherwise emotional topic. This makes for a thoughtful but demanding read, which I believe is a far superior approach to the topic than a "jazzed up", rhetoric filled, pulp novel, written for popular consumption. However, this means that the book is slow and requires careful reading in order to fully get at what the authors are saying. Most importantly, contrary to popular belief, the book is not all about race. Rather, the majority of the book envolves analysis of race neutral studies. Approximately 20% of the book is actually dedicated to racial analysis, and it is my honest opinion, having read the book, that the authors took a good-faith approach to a controversial topic. I do not know if their analysis was correct, but I do know that the controversy was undeserved. The hype that surrounded this book was less about the authors work and more about our society's inability to come to grips with the issue of race. In the final analysis, all the book proved was that the issue of race is far more complex than the popular media would have you believe. If you really care about this topic, read this book. Really read it, and then think about it. Then, whether you are outraged or inspired, atleast you will have a leg to stand on when you quote/criticise the work.
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Initial post: Feb 29, 2012 10:15:25 AM PST
Jim Morrison says:
I have less than a passing interest in race issues, but enjoyed the book on several levels. I like to see logical arguments based on evidence and evidence presented in way that is easily understood. The authors did both of those things. Although I have a degree in psychology the book did enlighten me in several issues. I totally agree with the last thought of the review, "If you really care about this topic, read this book...Really read this book...you will have a leg to stand on when you quote/criticize the work."
Posted on Mar 13, 2013 12:00:33 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 13, 2013 12:01:26 PM PDT
Marcus Welby says:
An excellent and balanced review. I too read the book expecting a more hyped analysis and was pleasantly surprised to find a very rational and balanced analysis.
In reply to an earlier post on Mar 13, 2013 8:03:50 PM PDT
Jim Morrison says:
Certainly one of the fascinating things about psychology is all the different aspects of it. This book touched on one of those. I suppose another way to say that is that humans are so complex that the study of human behavior becomes an odd assortment of interconnected theories. No single one of which explains the whole. Thanks for your comment.
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