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Cousin Marriage

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When reading Stephen Colbert's very funny book I Am America (And So Can You!), I kept getting the impression that at least one of Colbert's writers was a reader of mine. Nothing at all was ripped off, but a lot seemed riffed off, which I very much like. Then I came to an entire page... Read More
In contrast to the five poor daughters theme of Pride and Prejudice and Fiddler on the Roof, there's the five rich sons theme of the real-life Rothschilds. From the NYT:So, how did Rothschilds stay in control of the family firm for so long? What happened to regression toward the mean?Lance Morrow offered two explanations in... Read More
Here's the opening of an interesting new paper that will be presented at this year's Human Behavior and Evolution Society meeting at Cal State Fullerton from May 27-31. "Consanguinity" means cousin marriage (typically, second cousins or closer relations):Consanguinity as a major predictor of levels of democratization in a study of 55 countries.Michael A. WoodleyInstitution: School... Read More
As I wrote in my early 2003 American Conservative article on why Iraqi social structures were likely to undermine America's goal of nation-building in Iraq, "Cousin Marriage Conundrum" (which Steven Pinker selected for his anthology The Best American Science and Nature Writing, 2004 anthology), about half of the married couples of Iraq are first or... Read More
Hibernia Girl graphs the relationship between corruption and rates of "consanguinity."My published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer
From the Times of London: Arranged first cousin marriages are also a vehicle for immigration fraud -- they are a way to bring in more family members.My published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer
It's long been understood theoretically that there must exist a Darwinian fitness trade-off between too much inbreeding and too much outbreeding, but nobody knew where that was. If you marry your first cousin, you are likely to suffer a 30% higher infant mortality rate. But if you marry somebody too genetically dissimilar, you can start... Read More
A Lieutenant Colonel writes from Iraq: I just read your 2003 article, "Cousin Marriage Conundrum." You're right on the money about Iraq. I am at the end of my 1 year tour in Iraq serving as a military advisor to an Iraqi Army brigade in the northern Kurdish Region. From my observations, it is clear... Read More
A reader writes: I think that your paper misses one of the prime motivators for first cousin marriage (at least among the community in which I gained some familiarity with it – Panjabi Muslims). In communities where extended families are still the norm, the success or otherwise of a marriage depends a lot on the... Read More
Steven Pinker's "Inherit the Wind: Our Weird Obsession with Genealogy" is the cover story in the August 6, 2007 issue of The New Republic. Here's an excerpt: In the struggle between society and family, the exponential mathematics of kinship ordinarily works to the advantage of society. As time passes or groups get larger, family trees... Read More
Chris Caldwell has a good article in the NY Times Magazine, "Where Every Generation Is First-Generation," on how Turks in Germany are not assimilating because of arranged marriages with people, often cousins, from the old country. My published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer
Steve Sailer
About Steve Sailer

Steve Sailer is a journalist, movie critic for Taki's Magazine, columnist, and founder of the Human Biodiversity discussion group for top scientists and public intellectuals.

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