This from AlJazeera

"Scientific Racism Raises it's Ugly Head"

Regarding the Harvard Dissertation by Jason Richwine "IQ and Immigration Policy".

The dissertation may be dishonestly named - at least the discussions single out Hispanics.

It's a long document - a PhD Dissertation.  I remember when I wrote mine - part of the strategy was to blow away the credentialling committee with information and analysis, there was a chance none of them fully understood.  In my case, my dissertation was in microbiology, so I may not understand the process in social studies.


(public domain illustration)

That said, it's so long, it's hard to read the whole thing to give it a fair analysis.  Which, as in my own history, is part of the point.

Here is an extracted section, from

Even the extract is hard for me to get through.  Not because it is intellectually complex, but because it's just an opinion piece, basically just stating that "Latinos are Dumb" as headlined in Latino

One critic from Harvard "Fernando Berdion del Valle, also a Masters in Public Policy candidate, added, “I am a student at the Harvard Kennedy School. I am a son of two immigrants. I am Hispanic. And I am angry. I am angry that someone, despite many years of undergraduate and post-graduate education, would devote his dissertation to the idea that: ‘Immigrants living in the U.S. today do not have the same level of cognitive ability as natives.’ I am angry that my former economics professor would chair this dissertation and approve it. But mostly, I’m angered that the Harvard Kennedy School would allow such obviously shoddy scholarship to qualify for a degree.”

IQ itself is a debatable subject, as far as its meaning, implications, cultural influence, nature/nurture.  IQ is correlated with career and academic success, but beyond that is a topic for thoughtful discussion.

File:Head-Measurer of Tremearne (front).jpg

(Craniometry illustration)

Race is also a debatable subject, and to identify "Hispanic" as a "race" is just unjustifiable.  Hispanic people have origins in Spanish-speaking countries but beyond that, belong to all identified races and many combinations.  It's no more an identifier of "race" than, say, "Asian" would be.



(Above sets of illustrations, "Hispanic")

So debates about race and ethnicity continue.  Nothing new under the sun.  Even at Harvard Kennedy School, it looks like there's still a measure of "how much like 'us' are you, and if you are 'them' you are inferior".

This illustration of head measurement from "searching for the Irish Race"

anthropologist Charles Browne takes the skull measurement of an islander on Inishbofin

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Replies to This Discussion

I was just looking into that subject, from a Sci Am blog post. I'm larkalt there.

From the comments on that blog post, it looks to me like America still has a big problem with race!  People going on and on in the comments, saying negative things about black people.

The existing research does not support a genetically lower IQ for black people.  Rather the correlations observed suggest environmental influences.  For example, if black people had a genetically lower IQ in general, one would expect that the more white ancestors a "black" person has, the higher their IQ would be.  But that correlation is very small.  It seems more likely to be related to the fact that with even a small amount of black ancestry, someone is put into the "black" category. 

I don't know about Hispanics.  But, Irish and Italian immigrants were thought to be stupid in the past.  That stereotype has gone away and Irish-American and Italian-American people are now considered just generic American so far as I can see. 

I think people underestimate the role of environment, because it suits them to take credit for whatever advantages they have from whatever privileges they have - rather than crediting the privileges. 

And, it's difficult to empathize with how someone of a discriminated against race might feel.  It is probably more of a burden and ongoing stress than most white people realize. 

The last time I checked , " Hispanics " belonged to every race of humanity . What exactly , is this " researcher " talking about ? It appears to be just straight out xenophobia combined with a large dollop of willful ignorance .

You are more generous than I would be.  I think it's more outright propagandizing.  Willful ignorance would be an improvement.

Thanks for the Sci AM link.  It's interesting.  Why the repeated bullshit from Harvard?  Like the blog post said, must be something in the water.

IQ is probably more a measure of the economic, social and health advantages a person has had than anything else. It seems pretty obvious to me that a child who was taken out of school in the 3rd grade to work in the fields is going to score lower than the child of an affluent family that has been to Europe 3 times. Eastern and Southern Europeans used to be regularly rejected from immigration because of "feeble-mindedness", but look at the Jews and Italians now! I don't know how this bullcrap actually got through the approval process.



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