Race and Intelligence: Separating Science from Myth

By Jefferson M. Fish | Go to book overview

Murray also continues to demonstrate assortative mating for IQ, as if this bolsters the genetic argument used in The Bell Curve. But there is little doubt that people of similar IQ tend to intermarry, because this fact was established long before The Bell Curve. What was remarkable about The Bell Curve was the prediction that such patterns would lead to cognitive and economic stratification of society by the force of genes coming together in the children of cognitively elite and dull parents. Perhaps because we pointed out the dubious nature of the argument (Devlin et al., 1997), Murray dropped intergenerational genetics from his argument. Yes, there is social stratification in American society, but there is no genetic justification for its persistence.

Thus we end this chapter as we ended Intelligence, Genes, & Success (Devlin et al., 1997), with a healthy skepticism regarding the proffered arguments about and statistical analyses regarding the genetic basis of intelligence and the implications of this for modern society.


ACKNOWLEDGMENT

Parts of this chapter are adapted from materials we wrote originally for Intelligence, Genes, & Success. We thank Springer-Verlag for permission to use these materials here.


REFERENCES

Carroll, J. B. (1997). Theoretical and technical issues in identifying a factor of general intelligence. In B. Devlin, S. E. Fienberg, D. P. Resnick, & K. Roeder (Eds.), Intelligence, genes, & success: Scientists respond to the bell curve (pp. 125–126). New York: Springer-Verlag.

Cavallo, A., El-Abbadi, H., & Heeb, R. (1997). The hidden gender restriction: The need for proper controls when testing for racial discrimination. In B. Devlin, S. E. Fienberg, D. P. Resnick, & K. Roeder (Eds.), Intelligence, genes, & success: Scientists respond to the bell curve (pp. 125–126). New York: Springer-Verlag.

Cawley, J., Conneely, K., Heckman, J., & Vytlacil, E. (1997). Cognitive ability, wages, & meritocracy. In B. Devlin, S. E. Fienberg, D. P. Resnick, & K. Roeder (Eds.), Intelligence, genes, & success: Scientists respond to the bell curve (pp. 179–192). New York: Springer-Verlag.

Daniels, M., Devlin, B., & Roeder, K. (1997). Of genes and IQ. In B. Devlin, S. E. Fienberg, D. P. Resnick, & K. Roeder (Eds.), Intelligence, genes, & success: Scientists respond to the bell curve (pp. 45–70). New York: Springer-Verlag.

Devlin, B., Fienberg, S. E., Resnick, D. P., & Roeder, K. (1997). Intelligence, genes, & success: Scientists respond to the bell curve. New York: Springer-Verlag.

Fischer, C. S., Hout, M., Jankowski, M. S., Lucas, S. R., Swidler, A., & Voss, K. (1996). Inequality by design: Cracking the bell curve myth. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Flynn, J. R. (1987). Massive IQ gains in 14 nations: What IQ tests really measure. Psychological Bulletin, 101, 171–191.

Glymour, C. (1997). Social statistics and genuine inquiry: Reflections on the bell curve. In B. Devlin, S. E. Fienberg. D. P. Resnick, & K. Roeder (Eds.), Intelligence, genes, & success: Scientists respond to the bell curve (pp. 257–280). New York: Springer-Verlag.

Gould, S. J. (1996). The mismeasure of man (rev. and expanded ed.). New York: Norton.

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