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Differential Racial and Gender Canalization Explains Group Intellectual Differences.
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Justus Williams, a son of low-income Black immigrants, wins the prestigious US Junior Chess Open. Williams is more famous in chess circles for embarrassing world champion Magnus Carlsen in a friendly game (when Williams was 14 years old!)

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Note: Although he will probably disagree with its conclusions, this article is dedicated to Professor Thomas Sowell, whose astonishing breadth and depth of research are humanly unmatchable.

I have held the main idea of this article for almost a year now, and I recently noticed that some of the concepts that form the building blocks of my hypothesis are being slowly blogged about, which should hopefully make it easier for many people to understand the thrust of my argument.

Before I heard about the term ‘canalization’, I speculated on this theory about racial groups and intelligence: The different racial groups have faced different levels of environmental challenge and have survived by evolving different levels of a protective mechanism (probably through natural selection) against environmental insult. The East Asians, who faced the most severe climatic and other environmental challenges, have evolved the highest level of environmental protection, and sub-Saharan Africans have the lowest. In modern times, this has meant that East Asians can survive strong environmental intellectual deprivations (low Socioeconomic Status, etc) more than the other groups, which ensures a higher average IQ by having very few people phenotypically falling into intellectual depression at the bottom end. I didn’t quite know how this worked at first (or what other kinds of protection could be involved), but I thought there was a lot of evidence to justify the abstraction (and even more evidence against the proposition that such higher protection simply correlates with higher innate intelligence).

When I looked at the school performance data in the UK, this pattern was clear. There was practically no difference between Chinese students from low income households and those from higher income households.

Source: The Guardian, 2010

Source: The Guardian, 2010

Ron Unz had also found this East Asian IQ robustness in his earlier research on global ethnic IQs. He called it the East Asian Exception Hypothesis (we could, alternatively, yield to the pun and call it the Unzian Asian Conjecture!). Professor Richard Lynn dismissed the observation by suggesting that similar robustness equally applies to Europeans (for example, East Europeans did not suffer a very large IQ reduction from poverty-inducing Communist policies compared to West Europeans). However, Lynn’s counter-argument only works by focusing perhaps too literally on the word “exception.” In fact, there is much evidence that the East Asian average IQ is at least (significantly) more robust than any other ethnic group’s average IQ; under most circumstances in modern human history, it can quite rightly be described as absolutely exceptional.

The Europeans also do apparently have a (lower) level of protection against environmental perturbations, so all Lynn had to do was pick an example of a situation where they too largely survived a certain degree of environmental deprivation. He evaded a strong example (early poor immigrants to the US) in which European IQ seemed to have been much more depressed in the same conditions that did not similarly affect East Asian IQ. Our UK data above appears to also confirm that East Asian IQ is certainly much more robust than European IQ in the UK when we look at relative academic performance of children from different socioeconomic conditions.

Looking at the UK GCSE table, something else jumps out at you immediately: the girls perform above the boys in every group, but even more spectacularly among the Chinese since even the girls from the poorer environments are outscoring the boys from “rich” backgrounds. At the other (lower) end, of course, we also see the Caribbean girls beating the Caribbean boys significantly, although the environmental impact (within gender) is much more significant than in the Chinese group. In general, there is nothing very strange about girls beating boys on such tests and at that age, as this is common in many countries, but when the girls from poor backgrounds are also beating boys from higher income homes, there is some extra explanandum there that cannot be ignored.

Is there a theory that can explain all this? Would that theory help us explain racial and gender intellectual performance differences in general? To answer that will require a concatenation of a few key concepts gathered from different fields and sources.


Thomas Sowell has been one of the strongest opponents of the genetic hypothesis for black-white IQ differences in the US and globally. Sowell has always used two arguments to cast doubt on the genetic hypothesis: the first one is the Flynn Effect or prior versions of it that he had noted himself, which shows that IQs have been rising with time for blacks and other people all over the world. The second very unique and original argument he has used is the differential IQ performance of black males and females, which seems to favor the females. He charges that the genetic hypothesis can not explain this, but it is explainable under an environmental hypothesis.

Sowell’s second argument is much stronger than the Flynn Effect argument because it is very difficult for hereditarians to explain why there should be a gender difference in African American IQ, especially one favoring females (let’s call this the “Sowell Effect,” to avoid repetition). This is very problematic for hereditarians, particularly since the trend is normally for male IQ to exceed female IQ, especially at the higher levels of the IQ distribution curve. We can see this unique trend among blacks even in the applications to medical school, a field that is considered a good metric for group intellectual comparisons.

Source: Altering the Course: Black Males in Medicine (2015)

Source: Altering the Course: Black Males in Medicine (2015)

For an environmental case, Sowell says there has been a pattern among other environmentally-affected low IQ groups in favor of females and cites some research indicating that female intelligence has been more robust against strong environmental insult. He gives an example of some study that showed that American Jews apparently had the same pattern when they also had low IQ scores as recent poor immigrants from Eastern Europe, before they radically improved after assimilating into mainstream American culture and raising their income levels. Sowell believes that this refutes a genetic hypothesis since there is no genetic explanation for such gender dynamics. The explanation from an environmental perspective is not unequivocal either: Sowell says the gender reversal among blacks could be because the same backward culture that depresses their IQ also emphasizes macho roles for men (as it does among the redneck whites too). He also says it might just be something that happens to all groups intellectually depressed by environmental factors, since it reportedly affected Jewish immigrants too.

I actually disagree with Sowell. There is indeed no racial genetic explanation for this Sowell Effect per se, but there is a genetic explanation, even if it has never been given by hereditarians, which is actually much stronger than the more ambiguous environmental explanations. It is genetic but it is not racial, which makes it problematic both for standard hereditarian racial genetic hypotheses and standard environmentalist social hypotheses for group intellectual differences.


The Economist (2014) published an article that reported on a study about numerical gender differences in neurological conditions like autism. This can give us an important clue for understanding the abnormal black female-male gap in IQ, which can in turn lead us to answering the question of the racial IQ gap in America and some other multiracial societies. The article, which was based on a study published in the American Journal of Human Genetics, discloses that this trend is not just common in autism patients but is true in all kinds of cognitive conditions:

Boys are four times more likely to be diagnosed with autism than girls are. For high-functioning autism, the ratio is seven to one. Moreover, what is true of autism is true, to a lesser extent, of a lot of other neurological and cognitive disorders.

The article also tells us that the mutations involved in such conditions are the same in men and women even though the manifestation of the condition is much wider in men. What this suggested to the researchers is that there could be a protective mechanism for females against these deleterious mutations; I propose that this is the canalization phenomenon that is well-known in genetics (which works by limiting phenotypic variability), although it has apparently not been assumed to vary by race or gender.

The milder IQ depressing mutations (causing relatively mild learning disorders compared to clear Intellectual Disability patients, but still significant compared to the unaffected population) are probably much higher in the human population than these other stronger neurological conditions just because they are much less severe and probably pay their dues to the evolutionary system with the higher desire for mating that they seem to induce.

So, the black IQ in America may be depressed by either excessive mutations that the black women are handling better than the males through the gender protective mechanism or it could be depressed by environmental conditions, as Sowell suggests, which the women are handling better than the males through a similar (or the same) protective mechanism; or both.

Using this relative black female IQ as a barometer, we can check what happens to blacks when the environment is radically improved for them. I believe that the gender gap will still remain (since I think that the low black American IQ ultimately has a recent mutational cause that affects women less, phenotypically); Sowell believes that the gender gap will disappear (or even reverse), as it reportedly did with American Jews and others when their conditions changed, since he believes the cause is purely environmental (specifically cultural in the case of modern blacks).

Sowell (2013) claims this empirical victory in Intellectuals and Race (page 79):

Further evidence that the male-female difference in IQs among blacks is cultural is that black orphans raised by white families show no such female superiority in IQs, in addition to both sexes having higher average IQs than other black children.

Now, I was skeptical when I read this because I have other strong empirical reasons to believe that changing the environment should not make the Sowell Effect among blacks disappear. Arthur Jensen’s observation, confirmed by anthropologist John Ogbu and the Journal of Blacks in Higher Education and others, that children of blacks do not do very well even when they come from good high income black families, suggests a likelihood that the Sowell Effect does not disappear even when the environment changes. I doubted that it would make a difference if they were adopted by whites.

I therefore decided to double-check Sowell’s cited source for his claim of its disappearance. It was a paper by Sandra Scarr (1976), who was involved in the famous Minnesotta Transracial Adoption study. The cited page indeed confirms that Sowell had made a small reporting mistake (which is extremely rare for the hyper-meticulous professor). The results he references on that page do not disaggregate gender differences by race, so we can not know for certain that the black gender gap was closed (or reversed) as he asserts.*


There are other studies that could possibly back Sowell up if he is right and we should check those too. For example, there is the well-known Eyferth Study in Germany which monitored the IQs of illegitimate children of black and white American soldiers who were stationed there at the end of the Second World War. These children should have no gender gap between the black males and black females in IQ since they are brought up very far from the black ghetto cultural influence. In fact, Sowell himself has several times cited this study as a cultural control experiment.

I looked at the Eyferth Study data at Wikipedia and indeed it seemed to confirm not only the elevation of black IQ, but even the slight reversing of the black gender gap, as Sowell would predict. There are also many papers published by many scholars that have used this same data, which made it much harder to be skeptical. But it was still worth checking as our theory does not expect this gender correction here since the white women involved in the Eyferth Study were poor whites (the significance of which will become clear later.)


Wikipedia got its data from The g Factor, a book by Arthur Jensen (1998) that is probably the most cited in the racial intelligence debate. I went to the cited page and indeed found that Wikipedia had correctly reported Jensen’s data. The Sowell Effect had apparently disappeared among the black children born in Germany and the strong culture hypothesis seemed to be vindicated.

Our last option was more improbable but worth pursuing: what if Jensen himself is wrong? It’s of course inconceivable that there is a mistake in his book since it has been cited and scrutinized extensively for almost two decades now by friends and foes alike. However, if Sowell can be slightly human, there’s a chance that Jensen might just also turn out to be occasionally human (especially since the Eyferth study was in German, which means he probably had to depend on secondary sources.)

One of Jensen’s sources turns out to be another top psychologist in the field, Professor John Loehlin, whose treatment sounds like he actually analyzed the primary data. Checking Loehlin’s comments elsewhere on the same Eyferth study shows a discrepancy with Jensen, which suggests that Jensen may have indeed slightly mis-reported the data (or perhaps there is some other explanation). Loehlin (2000) sounds like there is still no gender correction for blacks:

Interpretation of this study is complicated by the presence of a race x sex interaction. Among the boys, those with Black fathers averaged below those with White fathers; but among the girls it was the other way around – those with White fathers did worse. Looked at differently, the boys and girls with Black fathers were approximately equal in mean IQ (96 and 97, respectively).

Now, one might argue that a one point IQ advantage is insignificant and we should grant that the gender gap is practically extinguished. In fact, it is far from extinguished, when you get a bit more context. The test itself apparently favored males in general at the time, so the black males were supposed to have scored at least 4 points above the black females, but they scored a point below, which means that the reversed black gender gap was as alive in Germany as it is in America. Let’s hear from the horse’s mouth again (Loehlin, 2000):

The boys and girls with White fathers were markedly unequal (101 and 93, respectively). These last two samples were fairly small (37 boys, 33 girls), and thus perhaps this 8-point difference is a statistical fluke. In some sense, it must be at least partly such. After all, the standardization population of this test consisted of children of German women whose males had genes of European origin! The test does show a difference in IQ that tends to favor boys, but less about 4 IQ points, judging from Eyferth’s graphs. The samples of children with black fathers are larger, 81 boys and 90 girls, and so should be somewhat more stable. But that leaves us with the question of why the offspring of black fathers do not show the sex difference that the population seems to. Back to “more research is necessary.” (My emphasis).

This means that we can also resolve the debate about whether the black soldiers in this experiment were more selected than the white soldiers. It appears that the hereditarians were probably right on this point: the black soldiers had to have been significantly more intelligent than the white soldiers because the presence of a Sowell Effect indicates that the IQ of the black children has received extra depression (through an abnormal lowering of the male IQ, as usual.) However, it’s another Pyrrhic victory for hereditarians: the continued existence of apparent extra depression for black male IQ makes their simple models impotent, just as it does for standard environmentalist models.

This also applies to another favorite study of the environmentalists, Willerman (1974), which is used to argue against any genetic explanation of the black-white IQ gap. The idea is that if the gap was genetic, it would not matter if the mother was white or black. Since Willerman shows a significant difference in the IQs of the mixed race children depending on the race of the mother, the environmental suggestion is that there is something in the nurturing environment provided by the white mothers that causes the IQ difference with the mixed race children brought up by black mothers, thus refuting a genetic hypothesis.

The environmentalists are once again logically right if their argument is against a racial genetic hypothesis. However, they also face a problem because a disaggregation of the IQ scores by gender shows large gaps that they can not explain since the children are growing up in the same environments; the gender of the child should not matter. Thus, racial hereditarians can not explain why the race of the mother matters and environmentalists can not explain why the gender of the child matters.

IQ Scores of Interracial Children. Source: Willerman, 1974.

IQ Scores of Interracial Children. Source: Willerman, 1974.

The only way out for hereditarians has been to dismiss the whole experiment on the basis of the extremely low scores of some children. However, the pattern of the children who score too low is predicted from our hypothesis of differential group and gender canalization.

Notice firstly that the male children of black mothers (married or unmarried) have the lowest IQs in the whole sample: the precise scores that caused hereditarians to dismiss the experiment as unreliable. However, if some of the black mothers have some deleterious mutations that are not expressed phenotypically because of the female protective mechanism, these will be expressed in their male children, but the canalization will continue to protect their female children. That’s exactly what we see here.

The (black) male children of the white mothers are not as affected because their mothers are not concealing as many deleterious mental mutations as the black mothers, for historical reasons that we will make clear.

Doesn’t that last point slightly contradict the Eyferth experiment where we claimed that the black male disadvantage showed up even though the mothers were white? Not necessarily, because the mothers in the Eyferth are said to have been poor, which increases the chances that they came from families with the relatively strong IQ-lowering mutations. These mutations were not expressed in their white children, including males, because those highly selected American soldiers raised the offspring genotype sufficiently high to make the racial canalization effective against these mutations (canalization works across a range of genotypes). For their black male children, on the other hand, the canalization (from race or gender) is largely absent.


The question of how races and genders became differently canalized is not crucial for our hypothesis; more relevant is the process of how black Americans received these deleterious mutations that apparently differentiates them from Africans. But we will tentatively speculate on both questions.

The evolutionary origin of differential racial canalization is probably related to the Out of Africa theory of racial origins. The severe environmental challenges faced by the Out of Africa migrants may have ultimately produced strong protective mechanisms through natural selection, racially differentiated by the degree and severity of such challenges, which may have also led to phenotypic resistance (buffering) against many deleterious mutations. Whatever the process, the East Asians, who faced the strongest levels of environmental and mutational challenge, became the most canalized against these forces, and the sub-Saharan Africans remained the least protected.

The same explanation may go for differential gender canalization. The female gender apparently developed higher canalization even before the Out of Africa migrations, perhaps because they were much more vulnerable than men to certain strong environmental challenges, as intuitively expected. Their protective mechanism apparently also gave them protection against some deleterious mutations.

There is only one problem with all this. If the Africans had no need for strong racial canalization because they organically faced much fewer deleterious mutations, where did these mutations that cognitively affect native black Americans so strongly come from? That’s the more crucial question.

This is where we explain the differential IQs of the black groups themselves: why modern black immigrants to the West show a relatively high IQ, especially when they come from Africa. Why are they apparently coming with less cognitively deleterious mutations?


Thomas Sowell’s incredible intuition offers us another clue, although we will again need to slightly fix his idea after stealing it. In Black Rednecks and White Liberals, Sowell (2006) theorizes that the modern ghetto culture of black Americans came from their association with white rednecks during the time of slavery and he believes it is the preservation of this detrimental culture – preserved with the intellectual help of “white liberals” – that keeps the black IQ low due to its anti-educational, anti-intellectual disposition. Sowell convincingly demonstrates some very uncanny similarities between ghetto black culture today and some aspects of white redneck culture that was more dominant in the South in the past than it is today, as more and more whites have decided to abandon it.

Although I agree that the case for a cultural transfer from some groups of Southern whites is very strong, I think it is more likely that this “culture” was actually passed to blacks genetically rather than through mere influence and imitation. If that is the case, then it was in fact the presence of relatively strong mutations in that sub-population of whites that was affecting the stranger aspects of their behavior and intelligence, and they passed on the same genetic condition to blacks through mating with the black women.

The best argument against Sowell’s cultural influence actually comes from his own analysis. When he is arguing against scholars who claim that slavery is to blame for current black problems like the breakdown of the black family, he gives statistical trends that show that for a long time before the middle of the twentieth century, blacks in fact had more stable families and even had less out-of-wedlock children than whites. He uses this to show that if slavery was the root of these problems, they could have started much earlier.

He is right, of course, but the same argument can be made against his black redneck cultural transfer theory. If the whites that the blacks lived with in slavery are the ones who influenced those negative aspects of their culture, then it should have been more evident in an earlier time instead of showing up much later in time.

Some of Sowell’s strongest critics on this theory also suffer from the same progressional problem. Scholar and investigative journalist, Steve Sailer, for example, argued that much of the negative behavioral tendencies in black ghetto culture must have come with them from Africa. His theory is also unlikely to be true if the statistics about marriage and out-of-wedlock births etc are true. If their culture came with them from Africa they would not have had a long period where that culture seems to have been almost absent only to forcefully show up much later, in generations that had the least connection to or memory of Africa.

Our theory does not suffer from the same time gap problem; it predicts it. If this negative culture was transmitted genetically through mutations inherited from some affected white males who had mated with black women, then there has to be a period when such affected “genes” were not high enough in the population to cause the impact that they would later cause. Our model is consistent with an increasingly degenerative culture caused by a genetic condition that was once minimal but rose quickly in the population due to the hyper-sexuality that it also apparently induces in some of those suffering the condition at its strongest levels (as also seen in Irish Travellers, for example). This is compounded by the fact that its last victims (blacks) were the least canalized racial group in the world. Its spread among whites was further constrained by the fact that they already had a socially stratified society that consciously avoided mating with the lower class whites; after all, if one could rise from poverty, it was less likely that they carried such relatively strong mutations.

Sowell’s mode of cultural transfer also fails to explain why blacks would have just started imitating people that they had recognized to be morally debased, and whom they are said to have harshly branded as “white trash.” If the culture was really transferred from whites, then there was a point in time when the black slaves had a better culture; it is difficult to see why they would copy a culture that was obviously despicable to them. Historian F.N. Boney (1984) actually explained that it was not even all poor whites who were referred to as “white trash,” let alone all rednecks; it was just a small but conspicuously notorious and hyperactive subsection of the poor white segment – which was also a subdivision of the wider rural redneck community (pp.38,39):

At the top of the agricultural scale, a few [redneck] agrarians held sufficient land, slaves, and other resources to become “aristocrats.”… A larger group achieved more moderate success with hundreds of acres of land and some slaves – perhaps as many as twenty or thirty or even more…

At the other end of the redneck spectrum, a few fell into “poor white” and “poor white trash” categories. These two groups were far from the same; indeed, the unwary observer could get into real trouble by not knowing the difference between these tough, sensitive people at the bottom of the white heap. Poor whites simply lacked economic resources, but they lived in a land of great white mobility and might surge ahead at any time. On the other hand, poor white trash lacked more than just money…[they] were looked down upon by blacks and whites alike and considered hopelessly deficient in character as well as resources. Many ridiculed and denounced them, but seldom to their faces, for their pride had distilled into meanness and they could be very dangerous people to cross.

One could strongly speculate that the label given to them by blacks (“white trash”), which sounds extremely emotive, may have been earned by the fact that this small segment were probably raping young black women (thus injecting a genetic condition into the black community that would eventually manifest in similar behavioral and learning difficulties on a wider scale.)

When the eugenicists were trying to rid society of such elements in white society because they believed they were incorrigibly (and genetically) immoral, they accused them of not only mating with their own daughters, but also uncontrollably mating with blacks (Wray, 2013). Although the eugenicists were probably wrong to force sterilizations on many such whites in America (through a Supreme Court ruling), they may end up being proven to be right on the specific expectation that their condition could genetically spread to wider society through their offspring.

Our theory thus explains a paradox that is difficult to explain by present environmental or hereditarian models: when blacks from Africa, the Caribbean and the US are compared, it is the least white-admixed black group that apparently performs best (the Africans), followed by Caribbean blacks who are in between; the most white-admixed group, the native black Americans, do worst. And yet within these communities, it is not necessarily true that the more white-admixed individuals perform worse; they may actually be over-represented on the highest levels of academic or social performance. This is because on the inter-black group level, white admixture may be a good indicator of how much association between blacks and (poor) whites has historically occurred, leading to transfer of deleterious mutations. But within these societies, some of the lighter blacks may perform better in general because they descend from those “mulattoes” who were a mixture of higher class slave masters and their slaves, and who ensured that they kept their complexion and culture higher through self selection, as recounted in books like “Our Kind of People” (Graham, 2000), thus largely avoiding mating with the larger community of blacks who had received the deleterious white mutations. This separation has however not been perfect even among them because they have sometimes married educated black women who did not show the behavioral phenotype that they were avoiding, but who may have still carried the genotype that would be passed to some of their male children.

Caribbean blacks in the UK also clearly show the Sowell Effect even among adults, as can be seen in surveys that have investigated educational levels of parents of school children. Observe that it is only the Caribbean blacks who clearly have more unqualified fathers than mothers in this UK survey:

Highest qualification level of parents of young people in the sample, by the ethnicity of the young person. Source:Ethnicity and Education (2006) page 25

Highest qualification level of parents of young people in the sample, by the ethnicity of the young person. Source:Ethnicity and Education (2006) page 25

Caribbean blacks in the UK may have in fact increased this deleterious mutational load further in modern times by willingly mating with the lower classes of British whites, who are more likely to still carry such relatively strong mutations.

The evidence of such deleterious mutations still existing among modern day poor whites can be seen, not just from their low intellectual performance (going even lower than poor Caribbean boys), but even from their violent reactions against their fellow well-performing students, a culture that is also seen among ghetto black Americans, which is further evidence of a mutational rather than an imitational cause.


The advantages of higher canalization are obvious. However, strong canalization also has a slight but conspicuous downside, especially in conditions where the need for such protection is lower. This is because it logically comes with a limitation on what is called “phenotypic plasticity.” The higher protection of women that (fortunately) prevents too many of them from falling off the bottom end into extreme dullness also (unfortunately) “protects” them at the top: not too many can “fall” into the highest levels of (phenotypic) mental ability either, even if they have the genotype for it. Thus, the paucity of female “geniuses” has less to do with inferior innate ability than it does with the fact that they are basically paying for their gender’s genetic protection from extreme dullness. They are in a protective “canal” that is difficult to escape either at the bottom end or the top end, by its restriction on phenotypic variability.

Similarly, East Asians are protected against all kinds of environmental and mutational “attacks” that would normally destroy other people, intellectually, but this special blessing means that they will also tend to be under-represented among the most original human intellects. This solves one of the stronger challenges raised against the Unzian Asian Exception conjecture, asking why it was not East Asians who produced the greatest epochs of human intellectual achievements in history if it is true that their average IQs have consistently been stubbornly high for most of modern human history. It would be because the same canalization that protected them from low intelligence also “protected” them from producing the numbers of super-creative intellects that would be required for such revolutionary achievements in a concentrated period of time. They have a small creative smart fraction, in short.

This differential canalization theory is certainly more plausible than the existing models given by many hereditarians to explain why East Asians have a high average IQ. For example, the idea that East Asians were selected for intellectual novelty because they faced a very challenging environment has one obvious problem that somehow escapes the analyses of most hereditarians: if they were really selected for their ability to find novel solutions to problems, that should probably be the characteristic that distinguishes them the most even today. And yet the same hereditarians admit the conspicuous paucity of highly significant originators and innovators among East Asians, despite showing over-representation in high intellectual aptitude, sometimes very precociously so. East Asian women, who have the highest canalization coming from gender and race, are the most exemplary of this contrast. The shortage of such super-creative phenotypes can not be because they lack the numbers of people with the right genotype, but because the genotype is “buffered” from phenotypic expression by canalization.

Ashkenazi Jews, on the other hand, may be the most over-represented at the top of creative achievements in different intellectual fields (from chess to physics to literature, etc) simply because they happen to also be quite lowly canalized. Although there are so many theories that attempt to explain Ashkenazi Jewish achievement, it may come down to just two factors: high assimilation into Western culture (of quality secular education), combined with a level of canalization that is lower than their fellow Europeans (as descendants of the Middle East – which is why similarly grand achievements have been accomplished by Persians in periods where they were also more open to secular ideas). This explains why Ashkenazi Jews have sometimes had very low IQs (whenever they were too poor to be highly educated or were in environments with little such opportunities), something that hardly ever affects the East Asians.

Our model attributes it to the relatively low canalization of Jews, at least environmentally. Lower canalization also means that their improvement will be more rapid when such environmental conditions positively change (as can also be seen among recent black African immigrants, whose radical improvements begin even in children who were born under bad conditions in Africa, thus defying all kinds of hereditarian limitations.) Had the Ashkenazi Jews not strictly avoided mating with the poorest Europeans that they lived among in some parts of Europe, they would have inherited deleterious mutations that could have probably affected them as much as they have affected black Americans, and their creative over-representation would have also been limited to those highly abstract fields that can somehow escape the necessity of formal education, like music and stand-up comedy – where male American Jews are only out-over-represented by male black Americans at the top.


Finally, one of the strongest pieces of evidence used by hereditarians for a racial genetic explanation for intellectual differences between American blacks and whites is the differential regression to the mean. Elite black American parents have children who are not as smart as the children of equally elite white parents, on average, which seems to indicate that the former come from a population with lower genetic intelligence. Our model explains this phenomenon quite easily without suffering explanatory weakness for the Sowell Effect: an elite black man is relatively free of deleterious mutations that would have strongly depressed his phenotypic IQ. However, his equally elite black wife may not necessarily be free of these mutations (he might have to look at her brothers for a clue). She is only protected (or buffered) against their phenotypic expression. The truth will be seen in the average intellectual depression of their male children, which will go way below what is predicted by the phenotypic IQs of the parents. (For the same reasons, very smart black children will statistically have larger IQ gaps with their siblings compared to the smart white children gap with their siblings).

In short, there is basically false assortative mating among black elites on average. This also explains why the mixed black male children have lower IQ when their mother is black than when their mother is white, as we demonstrated above. It also explains why the gap gets worse at the higher levels of parental IQ since this is where such false selection would be most significant. (On the more severe level, The Economist article gives a similar explanation for why strong autism is normally genetically inherited from mothers rather than fathers in all races: had the mothers showed the phenotype of the level of deleterious mutations they carry, they would have likely not been married, which is the case for men with the expressed phenotype. This also means that they actually got married to men who would have otherwise not married them, but only did so through this process of false selection).

Our theory is therefore quite easily falsifiable: an achievement comparison of only the female children of high SES native black American families (especially ones who have no elder brothers to influence their behavior) with children of similarly elite white couples (with or without their boys excluded) should yield results that would be inconsistent with the present predictions of racial hereditarians. Similarly, elite black African immigrant couples’ children, even with boys included, should not show the steeper regression to the mean that has been observed with black Americans relative to whites; it’s quite possible that the Regression gap might in fact be reversed there.

This obviously would not mean that the usual theories of environmentalists are correct either, since it should also not make a difference to them if the boys are included or excluded from the black American samples, especially in elite families. However, as we have faithfully acknowledged, both environmentalists and hereditarians also have some empirically confirmed arguments. Our present hypothesis, taking account of differential gender and racial canalization in human populations, can hopefully help to unify the valid aspects of the environmental and hereditarian frameworks.

NOTE: *Even if we assumed that the gender gap is closed, given the large component of the black/mixed group in the adopted sample, the other problem is that in the black/mixed sample, almost all the mixed children have white mothers (Loehlin, 2000), which means that the mixed boys will not necessarily have depressed IQs, as seen in the Willerman (1974) data, but the black boys from the black mothers should still have a significantly depressed IQ.

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Chanda Chisala, originally from Zambia, has been a John S. Knight Visiting Fellow at Stanford University, a Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution, and a Reagan-Fascell Fellowship at the National Endowment for Democracy.


[1] AAMC (2015). Altering the Course: Black Males in Medicine, p. 8.

[2] Boney, F. N. (1984). Southerners all. Mercer University Press.

[3] Graham, L. O. (2000). Our Kind of People: Inside America’s Black Upper Class. New York: Harper Collins.

[4] Jacquemont, S., Coe, B. P., Hersch, M., Duyzend, M. H., Krumm, N., Bergmann, S., & Eichler, E. E. (2014). A higher mutational burden in females supports a “female protective model” in neurodevelopmental disorders.The American Journal of Human Genetics, 94(3), 415-425.

[5] Jensen, A.R. (1998). The g factor: The Science on Mental Ability. Westport, CT: Praeger, p. 482

[6] Loehlin, J. (2000) Group Differences in Intelligence. Handbook of Intelligence. Edited by Robert J. Sternberg. P188.

[7] Rogers, S. (Oct 2010). How Fair is Britain? The Economist.

[8] Scarr, S., & Weinberg, R. A. (1976). IQ test performance of Black children adopted by White families.American Psychologist,31(10), p.731

[9] Sowell, T. (2006). Black rednecks and white liberals. Encounter Books.

[10] Sowell, T. (2013). Intellectuals and Race. Basic Books, p. 79

[11] The Economist (March 2014) Why it’s not Rain Woman.

[12] Unz, R. (2012). The East Asian Exception to Socio-Economic IQ Influences. The American Conservative.

[13] Willerman, L., Naylor, A. F., & Myrianthopoulos, N. C. (1974). Intellectual development of children from interracial matings: Performance in infancy and at 4 years. Behavioral Genetics, 4, 84–88.

[14] Wray, M. (2013). White Trash: The Social Origins of a Stigmatype. The Society Pages.

• Category: Race/Ethnicity, Science • Tags: Blacks, Race/IQ, Sub-Saharan Africans 
The Race/IQ Series
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  1. Mostly nonsense here. Sowell is also wrong if persisting in those claims about African American educational performance.

    Black males in the whole population perform better than black females on the best, most g-loaded tests. They do better on SAT Math and AP exams.

    Sometimes academic statistics and other proxies which don’t correlate perfectly with IQ are further distorted by things our author here is unaware of. You need to understand the pidgeonhole principle, which is why you can’t just cherrypick from certain fields. And everyone has already pointed out on this series of discussion that educational attainment, grades and classes, is just not the best substitute for IQ for a host of reasons

    • Agree: JayMan
    • Replies: @wolfy
    , @Stephen R. Diamond
  2. Jonah says:

    I got as far as the dedication (who dedicates articles?).

    Chanda, you seem to be suggesting Thomas Sowell is the greatest human researcher of all time. Or a robot. I’m not sure which is more likely.

  3. Polymath says:

    This is a remarkably original and intriguing theory, and the article is much the best of the series published here by this author. The only bad feature of the theory that I see is that “canalization” is only inferred and not observed. Is there any good empirical measure of canalization or its correlates?

    The very good thing about the theory is that is straightforwardly falsifiable by analyzing the data in the way the author suggests. It’s impressive how the author tracked down the original sources of the data that cast doubt on his theory and discovered that it was not reported properly.

    I want to hear what Greg C and Razib K have to say about Chisala’s theory.

  4. szopen says:

    Great post, thanks a lot!

    As usual, can’t wait the hereditarian’s answers.

  5. Jason Liu says:

    I appreciate Mr. Chisala for thinking outside the box.

    True or not, it’s a very fascinating theory. However, I must echo the environmentalist in saying that school achievement is likely just a broad indicator of intelligence, both across races and genders, as schools may be more conducive to certain demographics for various reasons.

    For example, even the most politically correct sociologists will begrudgingly admit that the Western education system is geared towards girls, if not downright hostile towards boys. If black boys are seen as more masculine, and Asian boys less, then this perception in masculinity/femininity may also affect school performance within the same gender.

    Not that things like this would discount genetic differences, but it’s not quite as simple as getting good grades.

  6. Rehmat says:

    I never understood how a racist person could be called “intellectual”.

    But an Israeli ban on award-wining Canadian author Allan Straton’s 2014 novel “Borderline” in December 2015 gave me some clue.

    Some “intelligent” officials at Israel’s ministry of education that if the novel was included in high school curriculum it could encourage sex or intermarriage between Israeli Jewish women and non-Jewish Arabs, Blacks, or even Black Jews.

    According to Israelis law – an Israel citizen who is involved in such antisemitic act – the male lover could end up in jail on rape charges for having kosher sex with her Jewish girlfriend. But the Jewish woman is considered “victim” in the eyes of the law.

    • Replies: @Sherman
    , @Justpassingby
  7. Truly it has been observed that a person uses their intellect to rationalize their prejudices.

    You spilled a lot of ink to argue that the root cause of black underperformance in all personal and social metrics can be laid at the feet of seedy, promiscuous, white, Southren-red-necked trash who raped black women.

    And it is all prefaced by your rather unique view of natural selection, to wit: ” The different racial groups have faced different levels of environmental challenge and have survived by evolving different levels of a protective mechanism (probably through natural selection) against environmental insult”.

    And the “environmental insult” blacks endured was, according to you, bad, cultural-influencing genes transmitted through rape by the above mentioned Southern red-necks?

    Wouldn’t that be genetic “insult”?

    If you expect to be taken seriously when telling whoppers, at least get your story straight.

  8. bomag says:

    Citing a bunch of studies then proposing a bunch of theories to explain them is weak.

    You posit a large effect from Blacks interbreeding with redneck Whites, but this flies in the face of the Breeder’s equation.

    I’m thinking a good source of data here would be women who have had children from both White and Black men. This would give a pretty good example of environment being held constant and we could examine the inheritance of the father’s IQ. What I see on the ground in my experience doesn’t match your conclusions here.

  9. scythian says:

    So If I understand this theory simplified. Black Americans can blame their lower average IQs due to admixture with “white rednecks” who have lower IQs. While at the same time the offspring of lower SES German women who had children out of wedlock with black US servicemen did not inherit these white trash IQs?

    I believe the best explanation for the gender gap in black male / black female IQ is due to higher selection pressure for IQ on the sex that is most involved with food provision. In the case of Sub Saharan Africans this would be females. Likewise the difference in IQ between European males and European females (which is higher in European males) can be explained by the increased demand on northern males for food provision. In Northern climes males are needed to fell large game or plow rocky soil. In the tropics this is not the case as women can do this work by tilling loose soil or gathering food from easier to obtain sources.

    • Replies: @Jonah
  10. Why you just can’t accept that black people have different proportion of people by cognitive categories relatively well captured by psychometric tests?????

    This is not even remotely “racist”.

    Lower intelligence is not intrinsic to the black people, only if they weren’t fully human beings but they are. For example, comparatively speaking, bonobos are intrinsically less smart than humans… But even in this case the idea of “intrinsic” sometimes produce the idea of “fixed for forever” and it is unlikely to be a absolute/ultimate truth about this subject.

    The theory about different environments that produce obvious different gene pool among organisms and human groups also is not in any way or perspective “racist”.

    Your argument is very clever but can’t be enough to be correct and it is what “science” work.

    Blacks are more mutant than whites who are more mutant than east Asians and with correct environment blacks will turn averagely near to whites because “environmental insults” will be correctly reduced. Also greater disturbance between men sexual competition can produce constant discontinuity of selective pressures producing a greater genetic variation while stable environments seems logically better to produce a long term fixation of “advantageous” traits.

    You don’t have the bad Wolfe destroying your house all the time. Adaptation is like long term investment.

    The problem is this “correct environment”. A brave new world scenario??

    Higher load of Neanderthal genes among east Asians MAY be protective against this “environmental insult’s”.

    Tropical environments indeed have higher number of parasitic species than in cold or extreme environments. But we know that a lot of smart people have lived in tropical environments since a long long time.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
  11. What I appreciate most about this article is its willingness to dig deep into prior research instead of just dropping a conclusion and moving on. An excellent example of how controversial debates should proceed: cautiously, and with an eye toward method, samples, and detail.

    • Replies: @David
  12. AG says:

    Pure hypothesis/speculation.

    If it turns out correct, great science theory.

    If it is wrong, false lead.

    If still believing it after proven wrong, it become delusion/faith/ideology.

  13. @Santoculto

    Blacks tend to have lower rates of autism (less somalians in Minnesota**) and higher rates of schizophrenia.

  14. iffen says:

    Redneck genes. The bane of many peoples and continents.

    Redneck genes. This is what you are going with?

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  15. BobX [AKA "Bob who~is of Bad White stock"] says:

    I suggest the name “Chanda Chisala Bad White Rapist Theory” for his postulate on black U.S. Male IQ, and limitation of female genius. Thought crime like this got Larry Summers run out of Harvard. So right or wrong he is no coward. I think I will stick up for my Bad White ancestors and call BS until we see some data to support his Bad White raping & interracial mating postulate.

    Can he or some of the brighter bulbs here help me understand the mechanism of differential canalization for IQ by race. I guess I need to go back and reread Cochran’s Survival of the Flattest.

  16. Other question is the level or size of propagation of this ”redneck genes” and alleged effects on intellect defict.

    Same effect among middle eastern people**

    Only a ”founder effect” that could explain this scenario or huge frequency of rapes and mixed race marriages, in Brazil for example, but in USA, i thought slave-owners (assholes) seems had a different ”philosophy”.

    Higher fertility of enslaved blacks was highly recommended.

    Real racist slave-owners create their own nightmare, importing, use and incentive for higher fertility of enslaved blacks.

    Result= unusual demographic profile of deep south, 😉

  17. AG says:

    Female canalization of many traits can be explained by XX sex chromosomes (male with XY pairs). Extra copy of genes on another X can save female from a lot of bad mutation like color blind, baldness, ect.

    It is no surprise if X chromosome also has canalization effect on IQ.

  18. Ryan says:

    This article makes a very common mistake. There is a actually existing element of the real world: general intelligence. But an Intelligence Quotient Test Point is not a unit of general intelligence in the way that a Joule is a unit of energy or a kilogram is a unit of mass. Scientifically speaking there is no unit of general intelligence at all. This doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist, it just means there is no unit which quantifies it.

    The score on an intelligence quotient test is a ranking. IQ tests are normalized against several thousand people who are hopefully representative of the population you want to use the test for. When an individual child subsequently takes the test, the result tells you how well they did relative to the test population. If the child scores a 100, it means they did better than half the test population and worse than the other half. If they score a 115 it means they did better than 68% of the test population and worse than 32%.

    Never in the whole history of intelligence testing has an IQ test measured general intelligence in the way that a ruler measures length or a scale measures weight. The only thing they have ever measured is how the child’s general intelligence ranks compared to other children in the community the test is normalized against.

    The takeaway is that discussing IQ score gaps in terms of points, treating points of score on different tests as real units of general intelligence, and then trying to compare them to each other, or map their deviations over time, is completely irrational.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
    , @edNels
  19. iffen says:

    The Thomas Jefferson Fever. Different symptoms for the male and female descendants of those who contract the disease.

  20. Sherman says:

    Hey Homer,

    You seem obsessed about sex with Jewish women.

    I guess this is more appealing than sleeping with your goat.


  21. David says:
    @Seth Largo

    Citing an article in the “The Economist” newspaper about prior research is digging deep?

  22. nickels says:

    Next time please state your thesis up front.

    I resent an article that tries to bog me down in senseless narrative and then sneak a thesis up on me. That is a Kant and Marx type of dishonesty.

    I made it about 1/4 way through and then got sick of being assaulting by a thesis-less anarchy of disjointed thoughts.

    Environmental IQ theories are absurd.

    Now. Watch this video and please quit lying to yourself about environment as opposed to genetics:

    • Agree: Anonymous Smith
  23. Tulip says:

    Very interesting article. I don’t know if anyone has considered the differences between Africans and the populations transferred to the Americas in the transatlantic slave route, e.g. those people sold as slaves were generally losers, either in warfare or politics, in one form or another in their native countries.

    If you transfer out your least-able phenotypes from your host population, that would presumably have a eugenic effect on the remaining population over time. Given that IQ is not only correlated with “book work” but also tasks like athletics (professional athletes tend to have higher iq’s), I suspect higher IQ might mean that you are better at melee combat, not getting ambushed and captured, and probably not losing in Machiavellian tribal politics. Further, since the African slave trade went on for a LONG time, and it seems like the Nigerians are really cooking on these standardized tests, it is an interesting question.

    Obviously, this would be testable by looking at IQ among African native populations based on the historic penetration and intensity of slaving in their territories of origin. At the same time, I have to appreciate your blame “white redneck mutants” hypothesis which, even if it turns out not true, sounds like the basis for an interesting work of science fiction.

    • Replies: @bomag
    , @iffen
  24. CanSpeccy says: • Website

    The different racial groups have faced different levels of environmental challenge and have survived by evolving different levels of a protective mechanism (probably through natural selection) against environmental insult.

    This is drivel.
    This is published in the Unz Review.
    Therefore the Unz Review is a forum for pseudoscientific drivel.

    Ha! The first time in a long life I have found use for a syllogism.

    But to be explicit:

    How do you measure “levels of environmental challenge”? Is a sub-Saharan African exposed to the dangers of sleeping sickness, malaria, ebola, the black mamba and alien tribesmen armed with blow pipes and poison-tipped arrows less challenged than a Vietnamese rice farmer?

    Obviously, no one can say.

    As for:

    The East Asians, who faced the most severe climatic and other environmental challenges, have evolved the highest level of environmental protection, and sub-Saharan Africans have the lowest.

    Here, the concept of “level of environmental protection” is based on the notion of “level of environmental challenge”. But “level of environmental challenge,” is as noted, unquantifiable, as must, therefore, be the “level of environmental protection.”

    In modern times, this has meant that East Asians can survive strong environmental intellectual deprivations (low Socioeconomic Status, etc) more than the other groups, which ensures a higher average IQ by having very few people phenotypically falling into intellectual depression at the bottom end.

    Some construction!

    But what’s an “environmental intellectual deprivation”?

    It’s low socio-economic status, apparently, and it makes you more intelligent! And Britain’s school lunch program proves it.

    Wow! Darwin would’ve been knocked out by that one.

    Sorry to be so rude, but if you’re gonna hold forth about racial differences in IQ — such a boring subject — at least confine yourself to arguments based on operationally definable concepts, and valid logical or inductive inferences.

  25. Sean says:

    I think the genesis of Chanda Chinsala’s article came from Greg Cochran’s recent piece on canalisation. CC is suggesting stress is a trigger for a diminution of performance, which is the opposite of the proposed mechanism of mutations coming through to expression per

    How CC’s proposed mechanism would work seems problematic in view of Cochran’s reasonable principle that evolution improves functioning. A mechanism designed to help a mammal survive and reproduce would lead it to react to modest stress by rising to the challenge, not expressing by deleterious mutations.

    Evolutionary capacitance is the storage and release of variation, just as electric capacitors store and release charge. Living systems are robust to mutations. This means that living systems accumulate genetic variation without the variation having a phenotypic effect. But when the system is disturbed (perhaps by stress), robustness breaks down, and the variation has phenotypic effects and is subject to the full force of natural selection. An evolutionary capacitor is a molecular switch mechanism that can “toggle” genetic variation between hidden and revealed states.[1] If some subset of newly revealed variation is adaptive, it becomes fixed by genetic assimilation. After that, the rest of variation, most of which is presumably deleterious, can be switched off, leaving the population with a newly evolved advantageous trait, but no long-term handicap. For evolutionary capacitance to increase evolvability in this way, the switching rate should not be faster than the timescale of genetic assimilation.

    I think under natural selection what CH Waddington called the “Strategy of the Genes” is (along the lines of more go getting Harold Lloyd than Buster Keaton (though Keaton’s childhood being battered around the stage in the toughest Irish Knockabout act in American vaudeville may have negatively affected him in later life).

    It is increasingly established that moderate stress can be beneficial challenge, but not if you thing you are being ground down, and that is why CC’s prolix hypothesis would be a very dangerous thing for any young black man who believed it.

    • Replies: @Justpassingby
  26. bomag says:

    That the slave trade cleaned out the slow and stupid from those areas in Africa is rather romantic, but it doesn’t hold up to analysis. When have political wars favored the gifted?

    Australia was populated from the lower echelons of English society, yet they quickly became as accomplished as the home country. Regression to the mean, check it out.

  27. iffen says:

    “white redneck mutants” hypothesis which, even if it turns out not true, sounds like the basis for an interesting work of science fiction.


    Revenge of the Redneck Zombies

    It will be a classic in no time, right in there with Ma and Pa Kettle, The Beverly Hillbilllies and Amos and Andy.

  28. AG says:

    A lot of canalization can be explained by extra copies of genes which serve as buffer against mutation like female XX situation. There are other genes demonstrating extra copies in people based different survival environment like this one.

    More copies of AMY1 genes for people have rich starch as diet. These extra copies can provide resistance to effect of mutation (like spare tire for car). We might find such extra or alternative copies for intelligence related genes.

  29. iffen says:

    Rednecks of little or no color and rednecks of color, we are the Romulus and Uncle Remus of this great Nation. The Yin and the Yang, separated and divided by the poontang.

  30. @Ryan

    Because people think that ”reality is subjective”, is must need to have a wisdom quotient. Intelligence without wisdom is dangerous, very dangerous.

    Thanks to the intelligence without wisdom that ‘european’s”, arabs and jews invade Africa and with local elites collaboration started african slave trade.

    Our personal reality can be subjective if we give emphasis only on our existential perspective. But the reality is not just our belling buttom.

    interesting that Chisala is looking more ”hereditarian” in this text as he pejoratively like to ”accuse” other people to be….

  31. J1234 says:

    The author seems to place a lot of importance on pictures that show black students at the head of their class. It seems to be…”proof”…of something. So here’s an idea: Why not just submit an article that’s nothing but pictures in it? Think of how many words he wouldn’t have to write.

    He should spend his energy on trying to improve the IQ scores of hundreds of millions of blacks world wide rather than spend his energy on trying to convince white America there’s no difference between black and white intelligence (by following the data down very specific and convoluted pathways.) Frankly, his approach sort of demonstrates a lack of intelligence.

  32. I thought border collier bad genes theory also can explain why Pitbull tend to be like that, ”environmentally deprived”.

    • Replies: @iffen
  33. I have a basic understanding of statistics (from a sophomore Economics course) but certainly lack the patience to go through all of this to understand its details and make direct challenges to this apparently exhaustive treatise.

    So I’m going to take the Occam’s Razor approach.

    Why hasn’t the World seen or heard tell of verifiable major technical and civilizational legacies originating in sub-Saharan Africa and crafted by natives of same part of the planet?

    • Replies: @MarkinLA
  34. Jonah says:

    Yours is a much more plausible theory. It has the twin virtue of being stated much more succinctly, as well.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
  35. MarkinLA says:
    @Jim Bob Lassiter

    Why hasn’t the World seen or heard tell of verifiable major technical and civilizational legacies originating in sub-Saharan Africa and crafted by natives of same part of the planet?

    Don’t you know? When the black people saw the whites coming with their quaint little wooden boats they decided that it would be embarrassing for the whites to see how backward they were. This is where political correctness actually started. So they bulldozed all their hospitals, universities and research centers and destroyed their wormhole portals. Then they donned their ancient costumes they performed their ancient tribal ceremonies in and pretended to be dumb so they could be picked up and get a free ride on a boat to America.

    • Replies: @dcite
  36. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Not to defend African development, but you can find this on wikipedia:

    Sub-Saharan Africa has produced very early instances of carbon steel found to be in production around 2,000 years ago in northwest Tanzania, based on complex preheating principles. These discoveries, according to Schmidt and Avery (archaeologists credited with the discovery) are significant for the history of metallurgy.[54]
    At the end of the Iron Age, Nubia became a major manufacturer and exporter of iron. This was after being expelled from Egypt by Assyrians, who used iron weapons.[55]

    Of course, the technology of steel production is not very important to civilization and history, so maybe I should just have linked to some African masks. But Yorubaland has a very advanced and ancient tradition of metallurgy–there were a lot of Black smiths.

  37. iffen says:

    Border collie genes are authoritarian. Refuse to be herded like they want and they come down on you pretty hard.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
  38. @Jonah

    I thought this possible reality of the inversion of gender gap intelligence among blacks can be explained by the fact that black men tend to have strongly affected by your bio-sexual condition. It’s possible to suggest that similar situation can be found among white working classes.

  39. Alfa158 says:

    If I am correctly cutting through all the tech-term euphemisms, at the end Chanda appears to be essentially presenting an argument that would make a White Nationalist blush:
    1. Some groups of Black people underperform compared to others because they have interbred with White people.
    2. On average White people who interbreed with Black people tend to have negative genetic mutations.
    3. These defective White people are dumber than the Black people they interbreed with.
    4. Therefore their children, who are grouped with other Black people, are on average dumber than their Black parents, which drives down the Black group average.

  40. dcite says:

    They really do say that “red necks” — whoever they are — are the only people to whom anyone can be racist in the PC empire. Blaming 1: black IQ, on 2: white red necks, (genetically yet!) is a match made in heaven, one that should delight many of the usual suspects in the PC ranks.
    We joke here a lot about what next are they going to blame on the white man. It can be hilarious.

    This writer seems to treat “red necks” as a kind of ethnic group. However, blacks then, as now, were mainly interested in associating with other blacks, even when whites were around. Were mixed blood blacks worse behaved than full blood? Evidence? In any case, how do you know the black influence wasn’t bad for whites? Could work both ways.
    There have been lower class and criminal whites in all the cities, of Europe and America, since forever, and yet, somehow, the cities did not get destroyed because they were 90-100% white. Bad as some whites were, the percentage was small enough that they weren’t human weapons of total mass destruction in their own cities. Their cities lasted for centuries, even through major wars. The white crime rate in America — even taking into consideration, rednecks of today, is about the same as the white European crime rate.

    Whites who came from the British Isles, brought the lifestyles and mentality of those particular parts of Britain they came from. The large plantation owners of the 17th and 18th centuries, came mostly from a section of England that had a long history of “Cavaliers.” They really did tend to come from landed ancestry for what that’s worth. They were barely out of the feudal era. They often brought with them white indentured servants, who in fact, often married (or something like it) with blacks, both free and slave. There was some difference between the English and the French/Spanish. I know from studying Creole history of the Gulf area, that most unions between white men and black or mixed women, were consensual and long term. In fact, the black or mixed wife inherited slaves and all the property when the “husband” died. Yeah, it was weird.

    Jamaicans prove the innate intelligence of Africans, because of their more purely African background? Really? As I recall the tourist area is gated off to keep the murderers out. There is an amazing amount of fantasy being spun by the media these days, about supposedly brilliant immigrants we can’t do without, despite the fact we have for a long time, done far better without them. Oh well. I’m in an area where I come into contact with these folks all the time, and while some are certainly intelligent and competent in their fields, Operation Paperclip (shhh–ex-Nazis enlisted by post-WWii America to start the space program), they will never be.

    The “red necks” (so called because they labored in the sun) were usually Scotch-Irish Protestants. There are certainly some sorry examples among them (some Kentucky hollows are strictly third world), but the high IQ among them were responsible for quite a bit of “Yankee” ingenuity, the amazing technological and sociological breakthroughs for which America became famous in the 19th century. There are only a few points of variation among whites from country to country, once you control for the degree of literacy and urbanization. Because — if you subscribe to hereditary IQ theory — IQ in a given race, always finds its mean.
    One needs to know the history not only of America, but of the places Americans, both black and white, came from. Black Americans have been studied ad infinitum. Other than blaming their talent for deranged rap lyrics on whites (who don’t quite produce the same thing on their own) I can’t see any light being shed. It’s Africa and black Africans you need to study.

    The 100 IQ average is the average because whites invented the IQ test. That’s all. It’s totally relative in relation to other peoples. It’s not really the mean for the human race as a whole, only whites. Asians do act smarter in many life choices and behaviors, and that counts. They are also the most forward looking, and think strategically. So we’re probably smart to think of them as smarter. Much as I admire the Japanese (nobody could do miniature sculptural detail like them), they didn’t invent the modern world; they were ok with the one they had. It was the “less intelligent” Europeans who did that. As you say. IQ isn’t everything, especially when it’s just 5 points. On average.

  41. edNels [AKA "geoshmoe"] says:

    relative to the test population. If the child scores a 100, it means they did better than half the test population and worse than the other half. If they score a 115 it means they did better than 68% of the test population and worse than 32%.

    How do you arrive at that correlation of 115 IQ to 68%? and 32%? That says that for every 100 there is 32 brighter than 115 IQ. Conversely, that for the 100 and below: for every 85 IQ there will be 32 below that.
    That would be interesting if it holds up, but I don’t buy it. I think the field between 9o to 110 IQ is well more than 90%, and IQ’s under and over that are rare.
    With your calculations, 64% would either be brillient or dull, that’s too many.

  42. bomag says:

    Post hoc history is popular.

    Usually we read how pre-Colombian Central America anticipated Every Single Development of the Old World; or that Islamic Scientists circa the year 1000 covered all the science of the Enlightenment and beyond; or how the Chinese have been there and done that since forever: we’ll probably find their artifacts on the Moon. No doubt Africa has done materials science bigger and badder than anyone; we just haven’t noticed enough.

  43. Genetic Canalization is very interesting. As I understand it is the selection between different genetic paths to (theoretically) identical phenotype adaptions respective the stability against mutations. More stable adaptations are more likely to prevail, thus get positively selected by evolution. I hope this layman interpretation is correct…
    Environmental canalization is also interesting and it is actually relevant for the race / IQ debate. In the next decade there might be results from genetic studies which link certain genetic patterns to IQ, and continuously a growing share of the variance between the different IQ distributions of the populations might get explained by genes, starting at a very low level, like 0,01 percent of the variance. Then this would be a prove that the cognitive profile of the different big populations is not exactly the same. But in this case the specific effect of the genes would still be unknown at first. Do the genes make the smarter people in one population even smarter? Or the not so smart people even less smart? Or does environmental canalization play a role, as the genes make the IQ of one population more vulnerable then that of another?
    Regarding East-Asians: I think the question whether East-Asians really only have higher average IQ´s but a more narrow distribution and thus less geniuses is not settled. I think the question why East Asia didn´t invent industrialization and modern science is irrelevant. What has happened in Europe between 1400 and 1900 really was a total outlier, a miracle. This can be better explained by history than by genetic I guess. Otherwise one would have to state that for example Polish people would have a significantly lower IQ than British people, which I doubt. But in the last 50 years East Asia performed not as well as one should with an average IQ of 103 and a sd of 15. In the last 10 years e.g. Japan did better in the Nobel prizes than before but still only reached the per capita level of France and Germany (who already have huge immigrant populations). On the other side in the International Math Olympiads East Asians succeed on a very high level. Actually they are much better than one would expect with an IQ of 103 and a sd of 15, which again questions whether IQ is really relevant of the IMO tests. Yet these tests seem to test real intelligence, prepping is almost not possible.

    • Replies: @MarkinLA
    , @Santoculto
  44. @Rehmat

    You need to go back in and sort out your referents so that somebody can understand what the hell it is you’re trying to say.

  45. To summarize the entire article, ” This is a nation of immigrants (wherever white people live). You must love people of color, they are just as good as you and more deserving of your land and homes based on the fact they are brown (jews are middle eastern). You white people are not allowed to say anything about them taking over but should help and give them your children, and if you don’t like their filthy religion too bad for you whitey. they will teach it in the schools.”

  46. @Sean

    Cochran’s reasonable principle that evolution improves functioning.

    Evolution is merely the difference between that which survives and that which doesn’t survive. But there’s no reason to believe that that difference is an improvement.

    The simple wooden pencil has survived many improvements on the simple pencil.

  47. MarkinLA says:

    Well since the Iron age started at around 1300 BC in Mesopotamia, it is certainly possible that the process to smelt iron could certainly have spread in 1100 years to many places where there were iron deposits. However, calling something steel when it is really likely to be carbon imprecisely added to iron is a bit of a stretch. Most likely the carbon is more of an impurity rather than a true steel.

    The earliest known material that we would really consider steel – crucible steel came from central Asia in around 600 AD and is believed to be the type of steel used in the famous Ulfberht swords the Vikings made. It is believed the Vikings traveling the rivers in east Europe acquired this steel in their trading down the rivers.

  48. @scythian

    You’re right. That’s exactly what I was thinking as I read this article.

    Richard Fuerle says the same in Erectus Walks Amongst Us about African women with food gathering, in relation to European men who did the food gathering got higher IQs because of that.

    He also says that’s how black men are “more attractive”, as they were selected for it.

  49. Ryan says:

    Hi Geoshmoe,

    That a 100 and 115 mean what I said is simply tautological. It is what a score reported on a normal distribution means:

    I would hope to emphasize once again that IQ point is not an objective unit of intelligence, it is not as a Joule is to heat or an inch is to length. What IQ test results mean about a person’s intelligence depends entirely upon the overall intelligence of the population the test is normed for. Joe could score 88 on an IQ test normed for Population A and still be objectively more intelligent than Bob who scored 99 on an IQ test normed for Population B.

    I did a longer write up in a reddit post here:

    [General Discussion] I think a lot of people misunderstand IQ testing. from AskScienceDiscussion

    • Replies: @szopen
  50. Ryan says:

    Oh wow I fouled that up super bad. 115 corresponds to the 84th percentile. Egg on my face. Sloppy, sloppy, apologies.

  51. MarkinLA says:
    @Erik Sieven

    What has happened in Europe between 1400 and 1900 really was a total outlier, a miracle.

    I don’t think so. Imagine Ancient Greece and it’s intellectual history undisturbed and allowed to flourish. Imagine the library in Alexandria doesn’t burn. Archimedes was working at the fringes of calculus. Ancient Greeks had already calculated the circumference of the earth. The Antikythera mechanism showed that ancients already knew how to construct gear driven computers like those used on WWII era battleships for gunnery. The Romans knew enough about hydraulics to build complex fountain systems. There are many instances of advances lost to time.

    Then it all went to shit for a variety of reasons.

    The Chinese had similar periods of intellectual excellence but those too died out due to plagues, wars and foolish beliefs by the ruling class about the value of such advances or the need to keep making them.

    That is the big difference now – we realize that we are not at some apex point in history where we don’t need to go any further and there are almost no limits to what we can learn from nature.

  52. @edNels

    It’s not every man who lives to be one of those who gets to say, “Hey idiot, ever heard of a normal distribution before?”; and I, of all people, would have been one of the least likely to join those illustrious ranks. But now the opportunity has alighted in my lap and, God heal me, I’m going to seize it!

    Hey idiot, ever heard of a normal distribution before?


    Look, he didn’t have to “arrive at that”. IQ is on a bell curve. If you don’t know what he’s talking about, then you don’t know anything about IQ. Or the normal distribution.

    115 IQ is simply +1 standard deviation (normed to the White population; with American Africans it’s a mean of 85, standard deviation of 12). And 115 is not at all “brilliant”. It’s just a college graduate (sans affirmative action, anyway). 130 is a good doctor or lawyer. 145 is (more or less) genius. Maybe Goethe or Leibniz hits something like a +4, who knows. As Dr. Thompson says, that’s for the likes of Bertrand Russell and Keynes to sort out among themselves.

    ” I think the field between 9o to 110 IQ is well more than 90%, and IQ’s under and over that are rare.”

    –Look, I’m being caustic because I’m amused. Maybe you’re a clever, resourceful person on your own time, but you are speaking on this topic in a completely unschooled way. Heck, I don’t consider myself “schooled” on this, but this is very basic stuff. Again, he didn’t “arrive at” or make up anything. YOU are completely making this up. You have no idea what these numbers are supposed to correspond to. It’s like you’re guessing at the meaning of words in a foreign language, and getting them completely wrong. It requires very little for you to get up to speed on these very basic issues. Please do.

    • Replies: @Santoculto
  53. @edNels

    Go here:

    and scroll down to
    “Standard deviation and tolerance intervals”

    That 15 IQ points (approximately) is one standard deviation is established by conducting many many thousands of IQ tests and then solving for the standard deviation. This is basic statistics.

    The scaling is arbitrary. 100 points as average is assigned for convenience, but the standard deviation is what it is.

  54. @edNels

    Also, once you get outside 3 standard deviations, less than 55 or more than 145, the tests and scores are not as precise.

    • Replies: @Alfa158
  55. Priss Factor [AKA "Dominique Francon Society"] says: • Website

    Chanda, bro, why you be doing this stuff again?

    I agree with you. I belong to the Albert Brooks School of the Super Negro.

    Albert Brooks understood the threat that the Negro posed on the white man, even the Jew.

    In REAL LIFE, Brooks tells a Negro, “you guys are stronger than us, you’re smarter than us.”

    In MODERN ROMANCE, there’s a scene where a Negro says nasty-ass stuff about Brooks’ shiksa ho. Brooks done see the Negro as a threat.

    In DEFENDING YOUR LIFE, a Negro has a big-ass brain the size of Long Dong Silver’s dawg.


    Sheeeeiiiiiit!!! Now, in the past, I would have thought Brooks be exaggerating. I mean we’s all know that Negroes be stronger and faster and more muscular. But smarter too?
    On average, we know that Negroes fall behind the white boy.

    But after reading Chanda the genius, I be convinced that Black Brains and Black Brawn will rule the world. It used to be the case that Afro-Negroes were less intelligent than other races. It was cuz there wasn’t much of a way to identify the smart negroes from dumb negroes for most of black history. In old Africa, a man lived by whether he could properly chuck a spear at a hippo or not. It took some skills and lots of strength. But it wasn’t easy to tell which one was smart or not. I mean even a dumb jungle-bunner can chuck a spear at a hippo and then run like a mothafuc*a. So, smart genes were not identified and favored.

    But in more recent times, with western incursion and machines and computers, there is a way to tell the smart ones from dumb ones. Smarter Negroes done use computers, gadgets, and stuff to do clever stuff. Not every ethical stuff but clever stuff. I mean folks can be unethical and still be very smart. Look at them Jews on Wall Street like in Wolf of Wall Street. (Also, intelligence be favored in modern Africa than in America. Cuz America be so rich, a negro need not be too smart to have it good. Even if he just a little smart, affirmative action done land him in a good college. And even if he dumb, he get welfare. But in dog-eat-dog or ape-eat-ape Africa, one has to use one’s wits to the maximum to survive. So, there be far more incentive for smart africans to use all their wits and cunning to rise above other negroes who all be crazy.)

    With technology and business opportunities in Africa, there is now a social mechanism to identify the smarter Negroes. While most Negroes, smart or dumb, could chuck a spear at a hippo, look all buggy-eyed, yell Daaaaaaaaaaaang, and then run like a mothafuc*a, not all Negroes can do stuff like email scamming. You gotta have some wits to do that. And in places like Nigeria, such Negroes done stand out. Such Negroes are no longer chucking spears at Hippos but finding clever ways to use their minds to get ahead. And since such Negroes do much better than dumb Negroes, they have more access to women. And since black dudes, even smart ones, just spray their seeds all over like they’s dicks be supersoaker tommy guns, they spread their smart genes superfast. If there be some very smart Japanese guy, maybe the shy boy finally get a ho by age of 40 and have one kid. But a smart negro done impregnate 100s of women in his lifetime. I’s done call this the Head Spread. Black Africans be unloading all over like this:

    Of course, dumb Negroes be screwing a lot too in Africa, and there be lots of dumbass jivers all over. But since Afro ho’s prefer richer men to poor men, richer smarter Africans get many more women and their smarter genes be spreading.
    Meanwhile smart whites and smart yellows have few kids.
    So, in the future, black genius is gonna dominate the world. But this is scary idea cuz, while Negroes can be smart, there be something about their nature that be psychopathic, jazzy, slickity-slack, flippity-flap, and I-can-lie-and-steal-too-good-not-to-survive(like the dude in COOLEY HIGH said). If Negroes could be conscientious like Uncle Thomas Sowell, it might not be so bad. But even most smart Negroes lack reflection, self-criticism, and conscience cuz their personalities be animated by the spirit known as the Jafro.
    Ever notice that the most troublesome non-blacks are ones that imitate blacks? Trashiest whites are whiggas, trashiest Muslims are muggaz, trashist chinese are chiggaz, trashiest latinos are spiggaz, and etc. They all be about attitude, aksing for respect while giving no respect to others. Black style be nasty and attitudicious. Just consider how blacks name their kids. It be so show-offy and shameless.
    It’s like Black Jives Matter. Blacks be killing one another but they done blame white folks. Even a nice old lady turns weird and crazy when she be acting black. So, blackness is troublesome, especially as genetic inheritance:

    Also, racial supremacism is dangerous cuz it means one race can rule over another. And if things go on like it be, black race will surely be superior to other races.
    So far, it generally true that blacks be stronger and tougher but not smarter. So, things be balanced out. Negro could whup the whitey with his fist, but whitey could whup the Negro with his brains. This be very important to the whitey. Suppose negro and whitey IQ were the same. Then blacky would whup whitey, and whitey would be total loser, and then all the white ho’s would go with the negro and reduce the white boy into total loser status.
    But because whitey is smarter, even if the negro done whup his ass, whitey can get more money and ultimately win back the white ho(after she done whore herself out to the negroes like madonna done).

    BUT, if the negro is tougher AND smarter, then the white man totally loses out.
    Negro man would indeed be racially superior to the white man IN EVERY WAY.
    That be some dangerous-ass racial supremacism.
    Now, Chanda bro, I knows you aint one of them crazy jivers. I know you is a sane nice well-meaning Negro. So, hear me out when I aks you this question: Do you think it be right to totally humiliate the white dudes?
    I mean Negroes always be talking about their manhood and how it was once humiliated and belittled by whites with guns and whips who made blacks say “My name is Toby” than Kunta. Negro slaves had to live with the indignity of seeing black biatches go with white masters who held the social and political power. Black men be looking at hot sizzling mama shaking their ass like that nastyass ho Rihanna done in the Umbrella video. They’s manhood was hurt and wounded real bad.
    So, it’s a good thing that slavery was ended and Jim Crow was sent packing, even though I don’t know where he done go. So, Negro man got their manhood back.

    But what about the white man? I mean, surely you must understand why white boys is scared half to death by the phenom of Negro Head Spread. Whether it be white ‘racist’ males or white cuck males(like that Ken Burns who done make my skin crawl), there be the sense of racial inequality vis-a-vis the Negro man.
    White ‘racist’ males be like Ethan Edwards and feel anxiety that his manhood be robbed by childish savages. And white cuck males accept interracism but from the position of weakness. White cuck males think, “we white boys are dweeby and inferior and no match for Negroes. So, let the BEST MAN, the negro, win, and let us sappy ass white boys surrender to a future where white women have kids with Negroes.”
    Daaang!!! Surely, you can see how pathetic, pitiful, and humiliating such future be for the white boy.

    So, you gotta feel some compassion for the whitey. The age of the Great White Man is over. White Man, having been lobotomized and castrated by the GLOB(alism), has been turned into a wussycat like Randall McMurphy at the end of ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST. It be such a pitiful sight that an Injun of all creatures(after all, Injuns lost their land to the Great White Man) feel pity for the white dude and
    take his spirit and run free.

    Now, you may say that African immigrants in the West can contribute to science, technology, and etc. And that all be true. Sure, smart negroes can become scientists and doctors, though one look at slow-talking Uncle Ben Carson, and I don’t want him to operate on my ass, let alone my brains.

    BUT, a society is not just about science, technology, and medicine. It be about race, sex, history, and pride. After all, white imperialists in Africa, Asia, and Middle East did lots of great things for the darky folks, but their presence was still humiliating for the non-white natives cuz they had to live under white rule.
    Likewise, all that massive black African tide into EU and US means more and more stronger(and smarter) Negroes arriving to turn white boys into cucks. As European men are beaten by the Negro in both brawn and brains, their star will fall in the eyes of white ho’s who will go with the Negro, and then it be the end of the white race.

    Also, Africa is big great continent and it needs to be developed. So, all those smart Negroes need to say in Africa and fix their own things than go to OTHER nations to do stuff there. Sometimes, I get the impression that blacks be ‘racist’ against blacks cuz they would rather live with non-blacks than with blacks. Blacks need to change this attitude and fix things up in Africa.

    Africa so big, Europe so small. Africans should stay in Africa and make it grow, and they should let white man be king in his own white land.

    For Black Africa to keep growing in numbers while Europe is overwhelmed by the black tide is not fair to the white race. It’d be like homo sapiens conquering, raping, and wiping out the Neanderthals all over again.

    Anyway, just look at this terrifying prospect of what the future might be. It’s from ALL IN THE FAMILY where some guy is both a tough Negro and a smart Jew. A Jewgro, the most terrifying genetic idear one can imagine. Brawn of Negro, brain of Jew. Sheeeeiiiit, even Jews will lose out.
    And Nigeria is the hatchery of the monstrous Jewgro as sociopathic smart Negroes are having tons of kids there. They be like Jordan Belfort who be built like Jim Brown.
    Shiiiite!!! That’s too much, bro. They be like Jewgrazis, or Jew-Negro-Nazis. And they is planning to take over the world. It be the Brotocols of Elders of Lion.

    It’s like this:

    Without the Negro hogging the alpha male status in the West, the white man can be like this: A Great White Man

    But with so many Negroes around, the white man is reduced to this: A pussy boy. A cuck.

  56. Vendetta says:

    I’ve admired Chisala’s previous entries on the African immigrant students, but this one has just left me baffled. What exactly is it about the East Asian environment that he says would be oh so inhospitable to human life? This whole theory is presupposed on that, but I am at a loss as to what basis there is to believe it. Which is the harsher environment to live in: a Chinese river valley, or the Congo?

    • Replies: @szopen
  57. One pearl is astounding: “for example, East Europeans did not suffer a very large IQ reduction from poverty-inducing Communist policies compared to West Europeans”. What poverty-inducing policies, you mean equal and free access to all kinds of social services, like healthcare and education? In late XX century, all East European countries allied with USSR had a guarantee that their kids are fed and schooled, with school education much advanced that in the West. All talented kids were freely promoted to even further development – like in specialized schools, that still exist in Russia, like the great development of USSR – the schoolchildren Olympiads in any school discipline. Such competitions were only recently introduced in EU (EUSO), where Eastern Europeans frequently win in many branches of science.

  58. @Erik Sieven

    I thought there are two types of creativity, based on lateral thinking ( little-C) and based on divergent thinking (big-C). ”Japaneses”, specially, seems very good at lateral thinking, ”they” can improve already known and useful inventions. Just ”whites” seems very good to produce individuals who are able to produce completely new areas.

    Divergent thinking to most part of the time is not produce ‘thing’ by nothing, but really improve or expand completely already existent areas.

    Lateral thinking i interpret literally, is like to see by different angles the already existent area and create new associations or even reinforce ”associations” who were hurriedly treated as ”wrong’ in the past.

    China copy every stage of industrial revolution instead of revolutionizing itself, China copy include the errors of this creative monstruosity.

    Japan copy but improve the original western industrial revolution,

    Western nations and specially UK was the first, the pioneer.

    My theory to explain why east asians no have more potential geniuses than white europeans is that, first, they des-selected nonconformist people, second, they selected concentration skills while big-C need exactly the lack of it.

  59. @Lucius Somesuch

    Hbd = ”people who don’t know organically what intelligence(S) really are, talking about what they don’t know or know very superficially”

    Iq-idiocy everywhere in the hbb-sphere, everywhere…. the most stupid of all is those who HAVE greater organic (potential) cognition but IS NOT smart.

    greater brain, greater neurodensity, neuroquality, higher iq, but…..

    is not wise.

    Houston, we have a problem!

    The higher this assymetry between HAVE ”intelligence’ and BE intelligent, the higher will be its influence and the subsequent problems…. many here are not soooo different than a Angel-la Merdel, just (des)qualitatively different.

    Merdel is a complete bitch in its area of (des) specialization.

    many here, the guru of iq science, are not soo diferent than this sweet lady.

    Intelligent without wisdom is like a monster, even when he appears serenity at surface. I know a lot of these imbeciles, generally lunatic leftists, children of the upper middle class, the eternal students who fall in love with pseudo-intellectual bullshit and confuse or misunderstand the true expressions of phenomenological philosophy (the philosophy itself is the art to harmonize, or to search for wisdom).

    read a book and not contextualize your moral lesson is the same as not read the book.

  60. @iffen

    They are non-conformist and temperamental, like human smart people tend to be, 😉

  61. Sean says:

    More to the point of the post and re. microaggressions

    If you are really well fed does that make you smarter? In fact obesity reduces mental speed. Conversely, when an animal goes hungry natural selection would be expected to amp up the underfed individual’s ability to find food; it would get smarter.

    There is absolutely no reason to think natural selection would or could produce a mechanism for coming apart by expressing mutations under stress. Certainly a person developing under conditions of biological challenge may more often have a phenotype expressing some novel characteristics (ones usually buffered out of expression). But this is not a stupid switch for a whole race, whatever CC thinks

  62. Alfa158 says:
    @another fred

    One more thing to keep in mind is that the Gaussian normal distribution is a mathematical abstraction which is precise only when applied to purely random data. It is useful because it lends itself to easy mathematical calculation of results and approximately fits the real world distribution of characteristics like intelligence, but you can’t derive reliably precise figures from it. Characteristics like intelligence are affected by environmental factors, interbreeding between groups, variability in how much it can be enhanced as a factor of inherent hereditary level, selection bias of the test sample, and the physical limitations of the characteristic being measured.
    Here is one survey of intelligence done by the US government as part of the U.S. National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, that shows the actual distribution of measurement frequencies from one study:
    Notice that the distributions are approximately Gaussian, but asymmetrical, lumpy, and cut off at about IQ 55 where IQs become too low for subjects to be tested and measured.
    I couldn’t find the raw numbers the graph was based on, but by re-quantifying the plots I came up with IQ distribution values that somewhat differ from the accepted ones:
    Whites; Average IQ = 103.3 Standard Deviation = 10.2
    Blacks; Average IQ = 87.5 Standard Deviation = 9.4
    Note that the Averages are about the conventional accepted values but that the deviations are much smaller that what is commonly used, which would drastically affect the population numbers at the far ends of the curves
    This is just one study so your mileage may vary.

  63. szopen says:

    I’d say he missed one fact: the populations which descended from groups which left Africa went through bottlenecks. That’s enough to provide a stymulus for evolving additional defenses against deletorious mutations.

    Another thing is mixing with neanderthals and denisovans, who also had very small population sizes and could have, therefore, similar evolved defenses.

    I am not saying that this is what happened; I am saying that Chandy Chisala could concentrate on that, instead of environment.

  64. szopen says:

    In short, you are wrong.

    The long version is that yes, a lot of what you have written is true, but nevertheless your conclusions are wrong. First, there is a construct called “g”, which is calculated from IQ scores; and when you calculate “g” for different populations, then you can see that it’s equally predictive to all populations, for all kinds of measures.

    That means that yes, the test scores may be normalized for population “A”. But it does not mean
    they are meaningless for population “B”; far from it. if a score of “115” predicts you can be a teacher in population A, and if you take someone from population “B” and he earns score 115 on the same test, then you can predict exactly the same: that if he would live in “A”‘s society, he could be a teacher there.

    And yes, you cannot simply compare raw scores. That’s why people don’t do it. Instead they usually use something Lynn called “Greenwich IQ”, that is, they try to transform raw scores, correcting them for Flynn effect AND calculating their relation to British IQ. The scores you see in “Wealth of nations” are such scores after the transformation.

    Whatever “g” measure, or even whatever IQ scores measures, it’s equally valid in all civilised societies, and is equally important for all of them, and high scores predict success in civilised, modern society. That’s why you CAN compare scores for different population.

    • Replies: @Ryan
  65. @Krastos the Gluemaker

    SAT V is more g loaded than SAT M. Males of all races (as far as is known) are much better at math.

  66. Most of the opposing arguments are surprisingly weak. [For instance, that academic achievement isn’t a true measure of IQ – as if IQ tests are themselves highly valid.] The theory is ingenious if canalization is a viable process here. (I lack the expertise to have an opinion.)

    Let me raise two others objections. According to the theory, in a benign environment, the IQ of negroes should exceed that of caucasians, because canalization limits phenotypic plasticity in both directions. But we have had an experiment in the U.S. with providing advantages to a subset of negroes. [I think the whole purpose of affirmative action is to produce an influential negro middle class, more concerned with status slights and career advancement than the material well-being of the masses.] Why have none of these phenotypically plastic (supposedly) individuals reached heights of intellectual achievement in the most g-demanding subjects? For example, where are the negro abstract mathematicians? (Eeven a single example.)

    The second is theoretical rather than empirical. If environments differ systematically in intellectual challenge, why wouldn’t this produce differently evolved genotypic levels? Assuming that canalization is one adaptive possibility, why wouldn’t there also be a more direct effect? [And Jayman: please don’t tell us that “Occam’s Razor” dictates that it be one or the other.]

  67. Ryan says:


    Right there with you. This is a comment I made on JayMan’s rebuttal to Chisala’s argument here:

    Hi JM

    I have an idea for what I think would make for an interesting blog post.

    When stating average intelligence of nations in terms of IQ one presumes to know the distribution of g across all the inhabitants of planet three, such that a nation with average IQ 100 is at the 50th percentile of the species. But there is of course no such thing as an Earth-normed IQ test to power this analysis, and scientific studies have to use a variety of other sources of data to proxy the idealized information.

    So, write a blog post about the various kinds of data sources used to construct the proxy, the methodologies employed, and the reasoning behind them.

    Also, “Greenwich IQ” is a great term.

    • Replies: @szopen
  68. szopen says:

    Thank you for your comment.

    But once again, while “100” indeed for population A means that you are above 50% of others in population A, it does not mean you have to know the distribution of IQ of whole planet in order to get relevant results.

    You just test member of other population and when he gets “100” it does not mean he is above 50% of this population, or above 50% of earth population. No, it means that if he would be a member of A, he would be above 50% of A’s population. And this is enough to make rough comparisons.

    As long as you remember not to take raw scores, and you remember to make proper transformations (which I trust scientists to do), it is reasonable to compare members of two different populations.

    So, if we take A’s population as a standard, and then we would see that B’s average score is 115, that simply means that “average” B’s member scores above 84% (number from memory) of A’s members. That’s it.

    And since IQ values seem to predict equally well the results in all modern societies, it means the result (B at 115 in reference to “standard” A 100) IS telling us something.

    • Replies: @Ryan
  69. anon • Disclaimer says:

    Note that the Averages are about the conventional accepted values but that the deviations are much smaller that what is commonly used, which would drastically affect the population numbers at the far ends of the curves

    Those data are from the NLSY79 and they can downloaded using the NLS Investigator (google it). Here’s what IQ means and SDs look like in that sample. Your SDs are too small.

  70. Sam J. says:

    “…Black Rednecks and White Liberals, Sowell (2006)…”

    After this book I ceased to read anything he had written. If Sowell’s hypothesis is true then why do Blacks seem to act violent and brain addled all over the planet where ever they go or are from?

    I don’t know what is wrong with Black’s or what Black people’s problem is I just try to stay away from them.

    • Replies: @HBM
  71. Ryan says:

    I’d propose a few categories.

    1. Everyone is taking the same test and they’re all from the population the test is normed to. This is the absolute ideal and provides the best information possible.

    2. Everyone takes the same test but some of the takers are not part of the normed population. This is probably not a big deal. In theory ridiculous problems could exist, like say the test is normed for a population that thinks in base 12 and is given to someone who thinks in base 10. But in practice I imagine things like that rarely come up.

    3. Not everyone is taking the same test anymore. Some people took the WISC-IV, others took the WISC-V. Or some people took the WISC, others took Woodcock-Johnson. Again probably not too big of a deal. There is a wealth of information available to reckon these scores against each other.

    Then we get problems.

    4. People from Population A took an A-normed test, people from Population B took a B-normed test. It will be much more difficult to reckon the scores against each other. Professional psychologists have no existing financial motivation to analyze the differences the way they do with WISC vs. WJ, so there’s not going to be readily available information to work off of.

    Maybe you can help me understand the Wealth of Nations methodology a bit. You said they used raw score data on various IQ test subsection to construct their Greenwich IQ. That seems odd to me because at least in the US test companies guard raw score data like it’s classified information. Last year a psychologist did an IQ test on one of my firm’s clients and we had to get the judge to issue an order forcing him to release the raw score data so we could have another psychologist make sure he analyzed it correctly. We had to agree that only attorneys at our office would look at the data, and our expert had to sign a confidentiality agreement.

    Back to categories.

    5. Some people took an IQ test, other people took some kind of test we hope is akin to an IQ test. The PNAS is probably pretty well g-loaded, but there is error in this comparison that no amount of effort is going to overcome.

    6. No one took an IQ test, they only took tests which are probably g-loaded. This is getting really dicey. Maintain very healthy skepticism at all times.

    7. No one took a test which is probably g-loaded, instead we’re looking at something like sixth grade math proficiency. Analysis of this information might be useful in some way, but as a metric for general intelligence it’s probably no good.

    Two final things. One, the premise in Wealth of Nations, that richer countries have populations with higher general intelligence, is certainly correct. Come on, it has to be. But just because something is true doesn’t mean proper data analysis exists to prove it so. Second, the whole series of Chisala’s blog posts have been based on absolutely terrible data, almost exclusively from categories 6 and 7. I can’t believe people could take the arguments seriously.

    • Replies: @szopen
  72. szopen says:


    Thank you very much for your long comment.

    Now, I am not psychometrician, just an amateur; i understand basic concepts, and I trust the scientists they use their data correctly.

    Lynn and Vanhanen, in 40-page long article I have on my hard drive, stated that they obtained data for 60 countries for the colored and standard raven matrices: if I understood correctly they method – for Standard Raven Matrices they used norms from Ravens manuals, archives and other published materials. Then, in this paper (I have no book right now at me, I’d have to search for it, as I have it archived somewhere) they calculated by taking this raw scores and look at which British percentile it would land. Then the score was adjusted by Flynn Effect. Then they note that because American norms are more detailed, while British are given only for 5th, 10th, 25th etc percentiles, they actually transform first to American, and then simply subtract 2IQ to get British equivalent. I may be wrong in my description of this method and I would be happy to hear from someone if I made any mistake. Later they also describe how they transformed raw scores on colored and progressive matrices, in a similar way.

    Note also that not all rich countries have higher “g” (e.g. Saudi Arabia).

  73. Chanda,

    Why do you bring up the Eyferth study when it has been disproven Rushton and Jensen (I know he is your favorite person =^) ) say everything wrong with that study in their magnum opus 2005 paper, as well as the other often touted studies that show no racial IQ gap. That is a horrible study, that people use to say the gap is environmental and not genetic, but they didn’t test IQs again at adulthood, like they did the Minnesota Study.

    Also, one more point on your Canalization theory.

    This is easily explained by this.

    African women and Eurasian men were selected for higher intelligence due to the fact that they were the ones who hunted/gathered food. African men and Eurasian women were therefor selected for attractiveness.

    >In Africa, the women, even today, farm and gather food, so they have more selection power, 11 but in the colder climates more of the food was meat, especially in the winter, and hunting was done by men, shifting some selection power to men. (Miller, 1994a). As a result of selection by men, Eurasian women have become more beautiful 12 and, as a result of selection by women, Eurasian men have become workaholics and slightly more intelligent than Eurasian women (more intelligence = a better provider in Eurasia). African women have become slightly more intelligent than African men, however, who have become the more physically attractive sex. 13

    Fuerle, 2008, pp 63

    That shows the evolutionary reason for higher intelligence in black women.

    Also I couldn’t help but laugh at your reasoning. Deleterious genes from southern redneck whites? That’s so funny!

    Is it always whites who are the cause for lack of black accomplishment?

    • Replies: @Jm8
  74. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Two questions

    1) Could the differences in canalization explain the often colloquially referred to low variance among Asian populations, in terms of intellectual/non intellectual interests, personality traits, and so on?

    Of course, blacks don’t seem to be too variable in those regards either, but if their IQ is depressed this perhaps isn’t surprising. Among intelligent blacks, I’ve often thought that despite immense achievements they appear to often more well-rounded and generally interesting, than whites or Asians with comparable achievements — e.g. Obama’s life history, sports, Sowell’s intellectual breadth.

    2) As far as I know, studies which have aimed to improve black living conditions e.g. adoption studies don’t seem to show any improvement that would lead one to see them catching up with white or asian norms?

  75. Jm8 says:

    Black men in the US make (by a small margin) more money on average than black women. Perhaps the former’s iqs are more variable (like men’s in general).

    (see top graph below)

  76. Priss Factor [AKA "Dominique Francon Society"] says: • Website

    This is why Negroes need to stay in Africa.

    They is humiliating the white man.

    • Replies: @Stephen R. Diamond
  77. @Priss Factor

    Remove the negroes, and without competition, the caucasians will become even squishier and more unassertive.

    In other words, maybe you should get some balls rather than crying that you can’t compete with negroes.

    • Replies: @iffen
  78. iffen says:
    @Stephen R. Diamond

    Does this mean that when the old left chose identity politics the only mistake was choosing the wrong group?

  79. HBM says:
    @Sam J.

    What’s wrong is that they evolved on a savanna for 40k years instead of at the foot of a glacier and in an environment with 4 distinct seasons.

    Thomas Sowell? Black “ghetto” culture is the fault of old Southern White racists?

    Rap “thug” culture is culture-destruction theater– written, produced and directed by Jewish record moguls.

  80. Jm8 says:

    I believe Sowell also reported female iq’s being slightly higher in Mexican Americans(around the late 20th c. 70’s 80’s I think.), which he attributed to females being more resistant to environmental insult. I’m not sire of the exact source. Its from one of his earlier books and might be hard to find. Will try to look for it.

    • Replies: @Jm8
  81. Jm8 says:

    edit: (around the late 20th century; samples from the 1960′s-1980′s I think, some perhaps earlier)

  82. Jm8 says:

    A Sowell excerpt on female iq in Hispanics (probably Mexicans from the visible context).

    “Table 12 SEX DIFFERENCES IN LATIN I.Q.OS 0Sample size less than fifty. … However, direct comparisons between blacks and Mexican Americans are not possible from these data, which dictate a high-I.Q. cut -off score of 110 … It is striking that the female superiority pattern in I.Q.Os is found in male-dominant Latin groups, suggesting that a similar pattern among blacks …”


    “Essays and data on American ethnic groups” – Page 223

  83. Bliss says:

    In Black Rednecks and White Liberals, Sowell (2006) theorizes that the modern ghetto culture of black Americans came from their association with white rednecks during the time of slavery and he believes it is the preservation of this detrimental culture – preserved with the intellectual help of “white liberals” – that keeps the black IQ low due to its anti-educational, anti-intellectual disposition.

    Worth noting here that the disparity in intelligence between blacks in the South (IQ 80) and blacks in the rest of America (IQ 90) is similar to the difference between MENA Syrians (IQ 79) and European Serbs (IQ 89) who are both white caucasians per the US Census Bureau.

  84. Jm8 says:

    The higher female iq pattern is was also seen in other poor low achieving groups such as; Mexicans (I cited Sowell on that.) and other Hispanics (and Jews as Chisala notes). It is not unique to blacks, and is not so much seen in African immigrants and their offspring (Even if they are selected the women should be about as much so as the men.)
    Sowell may have also noted it in other poor(ca. early 20th c.) immigrants from Europe(If I remember).

    • Replies: @jm8
  85. jm8 says:

    edit: “…and is not so much seen in African immigrants and their offspring, or significantly more than in Indians and Pakistanis (as seen in the graph in the article.) The article also shows that African men are more educationally credentialed than African women. The gender gap exists for the Chinese.

  86. Soooo….. No replies, Chanda? Are you going to write a new article on the criticism you got? Seems very lackluster that you have all of this build up for almost a year, then do not respond to criticisms and replies to your article.

  87. I knew it. Shitty genetics in minorities came from ghetto white people sullying the gene pool of people of color.

    Its an internal form of colonization similar to white losers with inferior genetics spreading to Asia and creating more Elliot Rodgers who inherit mental illness from their autistic weeaboo side. Minorities are not genetically inferior but colonialism made it that way.

  88. Steve84 says:

    The thing I keep coming back to is this: the fact that Asian have the biggest heads and brains with the slightest bodies (I guess even the poor ones). Is it a coincidence they also have the highest IQs?

  89. Anonymous [AKA "spiffen"] says:

    Nah, it’s what you are pretending to go with. It’s called an appeal to ridicule– the bane of many genuine debates and discussion. I have a feeling that you fully realize that the author was being colloquial in describing the lower class of Europeans of the old South. The same reverse argument has been made by Nicholas Wade in his book, A Troublesome Inheritance. Posh genes.

  90. In one of the earlier pieces in this series you write:
    “It is not their sub-Saharan African (black) genes that are responsible for their chronic academic under-achievement; it has to be a factor that is endemic to African American history.”

    If I correctly understand this piece, your theory is that it is the combined effect of sub-Saharan African (black) genes, which make them vulnerable to the effects of unfavorable mutations, and unfavorable mutations due to interbreeding with poor whites in America.

    With regard to the tighter IQ distribution of women, while your explanation might be possible, there is surely a much simpler one. Reproductively speaking, being male is a much higher risk profession than being female. Hence we would expect the tradeoff between the reproductive costs and benefits of variance to be more favorable to high variance for men than for women.

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