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Race Differences in Intelligence: An Evolutionary Analysis Hardcover – March 30, 2006

3.8 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

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About the Author

Richard Lynn graduated in Psychology and took his Ph.D. at the University of Cambridge. He has been lecturer in Psychology at the University of Exeter, professor of Psychology at the Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin, and professor and head of the department of Psychology at the University of Ulster. His main work has been on intelligence and personality. His books include Personality and National Character (1972),Dimensions of Personality (1980), Educational Achievement in Japan (1988), Dysgenics: Genetic Deterioration in Modern Populations (1996), Eugenics: A Reassessment (2001) and (jointly with Tatu Vanhanen) IQ and the Wealth of Nations (2002). Awards he has received include the Passingham Prize, Cambridge University Prize for the best Psychology student of the year, and the US Mensa Awards for Excellence 1985 and 1993 for work on intelligence.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 338 pages
  • Publisher: Washington Summit Publishers (March 30, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1593680201
  • ISBN-13: 978-1593680206
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,609,388 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By J. P. Rushton on March 23, 2006
Format: Paperback
The book's central finding: the world average IQ is no more than 90, and declines from north to south. An IQ of 90 is equivalent to the mental age of a White14-year-old. (Standardized IQ tests are normed to 100, the mental age of the average white 16-year-old.). Lynn also draws attention to the fact that a north-south IQ continuum has evolved, apparently through selection for survival in cold winters.

These findings in Lynn's latest book have profound geopolitical significance. They imply it may simply not be possible to transmit Western-style democratic and economic systems to the populations of Latin America and Moslem North Africa and the Middle East, let alone sub-Saharan Africa. They mean that the world's long-term problems will stem from its populations' capabilities-much deeper and more intractable than any "Clash of Civilizations"-style competition between different political concepts.

The implications for immigration are obvious: it can have fundamental, and permanent, consequences.

Lynn's book reviews more than 500 published IQ studies worldwide from the beginning of the twentieth century up to the present, devoting a chapter to each of the ten "genetic clusters", or population groups, as identified by Luigi Cavalli-Sforza and his colleagues in their mammoth 1994 book, The History and Geography of Human Genes.

Lynn regards these genetic clusters as "races". He concludes that the East Asians-Chinese, Japanese and Koreans-have the highest mean IQ at 105. Europeans follow with an IQ of 100. Some ways below these are the Inuit or Eskimos (IQ 91), South East Asians (IQ 87), Native American Indians (IQ 87), Pacific Islanders (IQ 85), South Asians and North Africans (IQ 84).
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Format: Paperback
It would be difficult to fail to discriminate between Pygmies, Swedes, Japanese, American Indians and Australian Aborigines. Wearing evolutionary spectacles, the physical differences are clear racial adaptations to different environmental conditions, with climatic adaptations being particularly evident. Why would levels of intelligence not also have been differentially selected for between races?

Chapter 1 defines `intelligence' and motivates why IQ is a measure of it. Chapter 2 justifies the concept of `race' - depressing that this is thought to be necessary - and makes the argument of the first paragraph above.

Chapters 3 - 12 then itemise in great detail the results of numerous intelligence tests given to nine racially-distinguished populations: Europeans; Sub-Saharan Africans; Bushmen (South Africa) and Pygmies; South Asians (Middle-East, India, Pakistan) and North Africans; Australian Aborigines; Pacific Islanders; East Asians (China, Japan); Arctic People and Native Americans.

Base-lining Europeans at IQ = 100, Sub-Saharan Africans come out at around 67. Corrected for poor environmental conditions, Lynn estimates the genotypic IQ (the mean IQ Africans would have if raised in the same environment as Europeans) as around 80. Conversely, East Asians seem to have IQs centred around 105 (p. 130) while some populations of Ashkenazim Jews have mean IQs between 107-115 (p. 94).

Chapters 13-17 summarise racial differences, and propose an explanation based on the geographic radiation of homo sapiens out of Africa, the resulting geographical isolation of sub-populations, and the impact of two ice-ages (the first from 70,000 to 50,000 years ago, and then the more severe Wurm glaciation, 28,000 to 10,000 years ago).
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Format: Hardcover
This superbly-researched and thought-provoking work is a must-read for anyone interested in trying to understand "big picture" human history, and to make sharp policy decisions that are based on facts as well as good intentions. The book is eminently readable, but contains so much information that sometimes it's easy to miss material. For example, the previous reviewer stated that Lynn "surprisingly forgets to connect his IQ data with historical facts such as: that the first great civilisations emerged in the Near East and Northern Africa not in Northern, Central or Eastern Europe..." Actually, this point is addressed on page 237, where Lynn discusses the retreat of the ice sheets, which still left heavily forested, cold regions in northern Europe, but milder areas in southern Europe that allowed for civilizations to gain a toehold.

This book is perhaps of ultimate importance in its discussions of the importance of micronutrients--a factor that is possible to improve. Highly recommended!
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Format: Paperback
Richard Lynn is a courageous scientist, unafraid to let the chips fall where they may. Truth beats wishful thinking and propaganda every time. He provides in this book the most comprehensive data set seen so far on an important question: do races differ on average in their intelligence? His answer is delivered with a review of studies from around the world, a plethora of data, and a cool head. It comes with dozens of tables drawn from about 500 peer reviewed, published studies from the scientific literature. It has over 50 pages of references. It is overwhelming.

Besides the tables, it has a worthwhile discussion of "race denial" among certain (mostly) American academics, and the usage of unhelpful euphemisms for race, such as "geographic groups" and "clusters" used by such as Cavalli-Sforza. I had to agree with him.

However, I am not sure that his explanations of the data (ice-age challenging environment) are anything more than plausible. They are certainly incomplete. His discussion of nutritional effects, so often proposed to explain the data, was clear and devastating, I thought. But, on the other hand, I wish he had included some discussion of the other moments of the distributions among different races. Surely there is some data on this. Averages are very important, but so is the variance, and skewness too.

This is an important book. It brings the data into sharp relief, and should be read by all race deniers. Some might even be cured.
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