Where is the historical West? Part 3 of 5

Kevin MacDonald

The West is Difficult

Western civilization is the most difficult to identify geographically for two reasons: i) the West has been the most dynamic territorially, developing across many lands, while advancing to higher stages of knowledge and power in the course of which it experienced “rises” and “declines” in different territories, ii) the West is the only civilization with a developmental pattern characterized by dramatic alternations in its philosophical outlooks and institutions. All in all, the West has displayed far more territorial movements, cultural novelties, and revolutions in the sciences and arts; and, for this reason, answering “where is the West?” requires one to ask “what is the West?” with an awareness of the fact that both the “what”  and the “where” have changed over time.

This civilization, for example, is not simply “Christian” in the way others are “Confucian” or “Hindu” in a more stable, less varying way. Its Christian character alone has been infused with a theological and institutional dynamic (flowing from its synthesis with classical reason and Indo-European aristocratic expansionism) stimulating a multiplicity of monastic movements, Cluniacs and Cistercians, Franciscans and Dominicans, heterodox movements (Pelagians, Waldensians, Cathars), not to mention Crusades and numerous Protestant denominations lacking elsewhere. The West—depending on locality, time, and groups— has been Platonic, Aristotelian, Epicurean, Stoic, Cynic, Augustinian, Monarchist, Newtonian, Gothic, Anglican, Humanist, Republican, Machiavellian, Hegelian, Fascist, Marxist, Darwinian, Surrealist, Cubist, Romantic, Socialist, Liberal, and much  more. By contrast, the intellectual traditions set down in ancient/medieval times in China, the Near East, India, and Japan would persist in their essentials until the impact of the West brought some novelties.


We must have a sense of the changing cultural character of the West as we ask where it is. The West in Roman times is not the same West in classical Greece, and the West in Elizabethan England is not the same in Renaissance Italy. Parts of the Roman Empire ceased to be Western, and huge parts of the world previously not Western became Western, i.e., Australia and North America. Much of the Hellenistic world never became Western, and classical Greece fell out of the West in Ottoman times. What I will do first is locate the West by way of a rough outline of the major epochs that shaped the West.

This civilization originated with, and expanded territorially: i) through the spreading out of the aristocratic warlike cultures of the pre-historic Indo-Europeans out of the Pontic Steppes into Europe after the fourth millennium BC; ii) through the successful establishment in the Greek mainland of the Mycenaean civilization, starting in the second millennium until its eclipsed in the 1100s; iii) through the flourishing of Hellenic classical culture in the period between 800 and 300 BC; iv) through the Macedonian conquests of Alexander the Great and the creation of the Hellenistic World from 323 BC onwards; v) through  the rise of Rome to its greatest extent in the third century AD until its end around 500 AD; vi) through the Germanic invasions and the revival of the aristocratic Indo-European spirit; vii) through the rise of Christianity in fusion with Greco-Roman culture and its dynamic spread through the Mediterranean world and Europe; vii) through the medieval enlargement of Christendom’s frontiers and the stretching of the West’s boundaries into north and eastern Europe, solidifying the Catholic High Middle Ages; viii) through the rise of cities, the Renaissance, and the Discovery of the World in the 16th century; ix) through the rise of Modern Science and the spread of Industrialization; x) through the spread of Bourgeois Institutions and the Enlightenment,  and xi) through the pioneering migration of Whites into North America and Australia leading to the creation of three massive new countries.

The Indo-Europeans

The links I offered here call for many questions in need of immediate answers. First question: who are the Indo-Europeans and why is their culture/geographical movements the first to be classified as Western? By “Indo-Europeans” I understand a pastoral people from the Pontic-Caspian steppes who initiated the most mobile way of life in prehistoric times, starting with the riding of horses and the invention of wheeled vehicles in the fourth millennium BC, together with the efficient exploitation of the “secondary products” of domestic animals (dairy products, textiles, harnessing of animals), large-scale herding, and the invention of chariots in the second millennium. By the end of the second millennium they had “Indo-Europeanized” the Occident, but the IEs who came into Anatolia, Syria, Mesopotamia were eventually absorbed into the far more advanced and populated non-White civilizations of this region.

Indo-Europeans were uniquely ruled by a class of free aristocrats grouped into war-bands.  These bands were contractual associations of men operating outside strictly blood ties, initiated by any powerful individual on the merits of his martial abilities. The relation between the chief and his followers was personal and based on mutual agreement: the followers would volunteer to be bound to the leader by oaths of loyalty wherein they would promise to assist him while the leader would promise to reward them from successful raids. This aristocratic culture was the primordial source of Western heroic individualism, originality, and Faustian expansion.

The Indo-Europeans, a Caucasian people, colonized Europe; starting from their homelands in present-day Ukraine,  the Sredni Stog culture (4200-3400BC) was followed and displaced by the Yamna culture (3400-2300), which spread across the Caspian region and moved into the Danube region; to be followed by the Corded Ware or Battle Axe culture, which spread across northern Europe from the Ukraine to Belgium after 3000BC; to be followed by the Bell-Beaker culture, which grew within Europe and spread further westwards into Spain and northwards into England and Ireland between 2800-1800BC.

The Indo-Europeans also spread eastwards across the steppes as far as the Tarim Basin in present-day Xinjiang, China, but these groups were eventually Asianized.

Coon on the European Race

Second question: what about the pre-Indo-European inhabitants of Europe? The people who were settled in Europe before the Indo-Europeans arrived were also White but not pastoral and aristocratic. From Carleton Coon we learn that Europe, long before the arrival of the Indo-Europeans, was populated by a White people, which he calls “Mediterranean,” a sub-race of the Caucasoid race. He writes in his 1939 book, Races of Europe:

At any rate, the main conclusion of this study will be that the present races of Europe are derived from a blend of (A), food-producing peoples from Asia and Africa, of basically Mediterranean racial form, with (B), the descendants of interglacial and glacial food-gatherers, produced in turn by a blending of basic Homo sapiens, related to the remote ancestor of the Mediterraneans, with some non-sapiens species of general Neanderthaloid form. The actions and interactions of environment, selection, migration, and human culture upon the various entities within this amalgam, have produced the white race in its present complexity.

The White race originated out of Upper Paleolithic types and Mediterranean types. The Upper Paleolithic peoples, according to Coon, are the original modern sapiens of Europe, whereas the Mediterraneans came later from the Near East as a more advanced Neolithic people. The Upper Paleolithic and Mediterraneans mixture produced a White crossbreed typified by the Dinaric race.

I should clarify that experts today agree that the Upper Paleolithic peoples were “modern humans” who migrated into Europe around 40,000-35,000 years ago from the Near East. The Neanderthals who were there before can still be found in the Iberian areas of Europe until about 25,000, but there is minimal or no evidence of genetic mixture with the Upper Paleolithic. Furthermore, it should be noted that Coon did not write only of a Mediterranean sub-Caucasoid race, but identified two more White sub-races in Europe, Nordic and Alpine. He observed the predominance of the Nordic type in countries of Central and Northern Europe; and of the Alpine race in central/southern/Eastern Europe and parts of Western and Central Asia. Interestingly enough, Madison Grant had already offered a mapping of these three sub-White races in his book, The Passing of the Great Race, published in 1916.

Coon believed that the Proto-Indo-Europeans were basically the ancestors of the Nordic racial type.  The Nordics were a blend of Indo-European Corded people and Mediterranean Danubians. The Corded people came from southern Russia, the Pontic-Steppes, and, as they moved westward into central and northwestern Europe, they intermingled with other peoples (1939: 107-109). In any case, we now know that the Indo-Europeans who spread westwards and eastwards across the steppes (as far as the Tarim Basin region) were Caucasians.

Don’t you believe the BBC propaganda that the “first Europeans” were “generic” creatures resembling some African/Asian/European amalgamation.

European Connections

Third question: how can one separate the West geographically from the Near East, Africa, and even Asia? Parts of Africa and the Near East were included into the Roman Empire, the Hellenistic world included Persia, Bactria, Sogdiana, even lands adjacent to the Indus River. The eastern boundaries of the European continent itself extend to the Ural Mountains, cutting Russia into European and Asian parts. While the Mediterranean Sea separates Europe from Asia and Africa, historically this Sea has been the major source of Europe’s connection to the Near East leading some historians to conclude that Ancient Greece, Rome, and Renaissance Italy are best identified as “Mediterranean”. Cultural Marxists have exploited these connections to promote “Mediterranean Studies” against the traditional Classic programs.  Europe’s very uniqueness, its dynamism, explorations, colonization, and Westernization, has obscured its identity and boundaries.

From a strictly geographical point, irrespective of historical connections, Europe is the most connected region of the planet. It is not even a clearly cut continent on its own but a peninsula on the western end of Asia.  With its deeply convoluted coasts and its island fragments scattered all round, the sheer length of Europe’s interface between land and sea has been estimated to be 37,000 km, which is equivalent to the circumference of the earth. Europe is connected to more seas than any other place/civilization: to the Black Sea, the North Sea, the Baltic, the Atlantic Ocean, the Arctic Ocean, and the Mediterranean Sea, itself a collection of many conjoined sub-seas.

China, in contrast, has been a relatively isolated civilization, both geographically and historically. On the eastern side has stood the vast Pacific Ocean; to the south and the west, the impassable gorges of the Burma border and the inhospitable plateau of the Tibetan Himalayas, and to the northwest and north, the sparsely populated grasslands of Central Asia, the Gobi desert, the fifth largest desert in the world. Contacts with other regions did occur, with India through the northwest corridor, with the Arab world by sea, and through the Silk Road along the Steppes. But the salient point is that China has developed her own culture in a far less connected way than Europe.

Black African kingdoms have been very isolated: sub-Sahara Africa is surrounded by the Sahara Desert in the north, which hindered contact with the Mediterranean, and by the Kalahari Desert in the south, which partially disconnected the southern plateau and coastal regions from central Africa. On the western side, Africa is faced by the vast Atlantic Ocean that Portuguese navigators only managed to navigate southwards in the 16th century. To the north and south of the equator, Black Africa had to contest with dense rainforests which occupy a west-east band of territory from the southern coast of West Africa across to the Congo basin and all the way to the Kenya highlands. Moreover, with an average elevation of 660 meters, African cultures were limited by the presence of few natural harbors where ships can dock, and few navigable rivers. Of the Niger, the Congo, the Nile, the Zambezi, and the Orange Rivers, only the Nile has relatively long navigable areas.

Go to Part 4 of 5.

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17 Comments to "Where is the historical West? Part 3 of 5"

  1. Axe of Perun's Gravatar Axe of Perun
    December 6, 2012 - 2:42 pm | Permalink

    For comparison to Carleton Coon read also: “The new racial classification” on EUROPA SOBERANA.

  2. Anglo Saxon's Gravatar Anglo Saxon
    December 6, 2012 - 1:15 pm | Permalink

    @Zachery Abramson: Yes. I have visited the southern part of China, where many of the ethnic minorities have their natural home, and can attest to the accuracy in your comment. Very, very interesting trip for me.

    When in China I learned first hand that it is official Beijing policy to protect and nurture the cultures of all non-Han Chinese peoples. This protection even extends to China’s Muslim minorities. There are several cultural festivals that attest to this official protection.

    But, it is the Han (and Mongol) women who are arguably the more beautiful as they are genetically closer to we ethno-Europeans.

  3. Achaean's Gravatar Achaean
    December 6, 2012 - 8:43 am | Permalink

    There is an article, “In Ways Unacademical”: The Reception of Carleton S. Coon’s The Origin of Races” by
    JOHN P. JACKSON, which, apparently could not really find anything unscientific with Coon’s work, his evidence and methodology, so it concluded that Coon’s was unscientific in not believing in integration, as the Abstract says:

    “…The paper concludes that Coon actively aided the segregationist cause in violation of his own standards for scientific objectivity”

    You can be sure that if he had worked for integration, and was a Boasian, the conclusion would have been that Coon was not only a great scientist but a humanitarian.

  4. Achaean's Gravatar Achaean
    December 6, 2012 - 8:35 am | Permalink

    A section in this 2008 MA Thesis, “The Race Hunter: Carleton S. Coon” (http://www.textbookhistory.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/All-With-Theories-to-Sell.pdf), makes clear, despite the student’s agreement with the Boasians, that “Coon imagined that he, unlike his brainwashed colleagues under the spell of “the cult leadership of Franz Boas” was an objective observer, and as such, not subject to the intellectual and political fashions of the times”

    Reading this section, one cannot but agree with Coon. The only attempt on the grad student’s part to show that Coon was unscientific or overtly ideological is to suggest that his “physical anthropology” was being left behind by the geneticist approach of Theodosius Dobzhansky. But I cannot see why this was so from what this student says; instead this this section criticizes Coon’s personality, and then deduces thereof that he was biased and not a properly scientific scholar. I am intrigued by Coon’s use of the term “domesticated” in reference to the way scientists were acting and thinking in his day — I think he meant, in part, that academics were increasingly unable to handle the hard truths of life, and were proposing ideas befitting the peaceful atmosphere of an urbane, affluent world. Western academics may well be the weakest, most domesticated, humans on this planet, and yet they are supposedly in charge of the truth.

  5. Tottori's Gravatar Tottori
    December 5, 2012 - 11:02 pm | Permalink

    I keep up with anthropology and genetics. I bought and skimmed Coons 3 major books (Races of Europe, races of man, origin of race) then for fun I decided to read the mainstream media’s condemnation of Coon; they said his ideas hold no credibility (example; there’s more variance within a race than between them- without mentioning that dog breeds have less variance than human races) and for alleged racism (example; they said it’s racist to show pictures of Africans wearing their native clothing because that infers inferiority and that Coon should have given Africans European-clothing to wear for pictures. I can’t help but notice that it wasn’t Coon but righteous liberal commentators that brought in the hierarchy where African clothing=inferior. Being in my early 20’s and reading these ridiculous arguments from the 1960‘s, I’m shocked that political correctness didn’t die out in paradoxes and double standards soon after its appearance.)

    I also notice that when his ideas eventually turn out to be true the media is silent. I’m thinking about a recent genetic study posted on Dienkes blog about Neolithic expansion into Scandinavia and how Coon predicted that this expansion occurred along the Atlantic coast because the western Scandinavian racial type pulls towards the western Atlantic average which had agriculture earlier. There’s other examples- Neanderthal ancestry being one already pointed out. Coon deserves a lot more respect.

    Because of racial double standards there’s huge amounts of highly significant ancient genetic studies that go unnoticed by the mainstream media (such as the media blackout when they found that west-central-southern Africans have more admixture with an archaic human species, but when Europeans are found to have primitive Neanderthal admixture and Africans none then it’s headline news). It’s all about the equalization- bring whites down and bring blacks up. (It’s headline news when southern whites tested an IQ of 98 and northeastern whites an IQ of 102- Northerners are welcome to comment in the article about how hot summers must kill our brain cells making us stupid (we must not have air-conditioning)- while from the same media there’s total blackout about race/class/gender differences in IQ/hormones/personality traits/regression to the mean/perception) Did Europeans do something good and Africans something strange? Shhh… quiet… hide it! Did Europeans (especially of the conservative, southern, or Christian variety) do something bad and Africans something good? HEADLINE NEWS. Will anybody notice? No- they don’t have time to research things themselves. I’d make a great strategist for the New York Times.

  6. Trenchant's Gravatar Trenchant
    December 5, 2012 - 8:54 pm | Permalink

    @Thank you. If you’re interested in the utilitarian critique of IP, Boldrin and Levine:

    For what it’s worth, I prefer the moral objection.

  7. Franklin Ryckaert's Gravatar Franklin Ryckaert
    December 5, 2012 - 5:09 pm | Permalink

    @Franklin Ryckaert:
    Correction : eastern province of Sinkiang > western province of Sinkiang.

  8. Franklin Ryckaert's Gravatar Franklin Ryckaert
    December 5, 2012 - 5:01 pm | Permalink

    @Zachery Abramson:

    “China historically and currently is one of the most diverse cultures and societies.”
    “The Han Chinese only represent a small part of the country’s history and culture.”

    The opposite is true. Less than 10% of the population consists of “ethnic minorities” and those belong nearly all to the Mongolian race, looking not much different from the Chinese themselves. Only the Turkish speaking, Muslim Uighurs (about 8 million people) in the eastern province of Sinkiang have visible admixture with Caucasian blood ( ranging from 30% to 60%, probably from the Indo-European Tocharians), but their province is presently flooded with ethnic Han. On the whole China is homogeneous, and that – contrary to the current liberal mantra – is a source of strength we only can envy.

  9. December 5, 2012 - 4:03 pm | Permalink

    @Zachery Abramson:

    Abramson. You deceitful liar. 91.5% of China is Han. the 56 ethnic groups put together are only 8.5% of population.

    If America was 91.5% white, and 8.5% were Blacks, Hispanics, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Indian, Filipinos, Vietnamese…
    we would be ecstatic.

    So take your lies to the nearest federal reserve branch and cash it. Also, Chinese culture has always been a one way flow to Korea and Japan. There is negligible Korean, Japanese influence. Mongol, Jurchen input is mainly genetic as they impregnated millions of Han women.

    India gave Buddhism to China and Persians gave painting and architecture which they learnt from Greece.

    So China received cultural input only from India and Greece. And Buddha was a White scythian, he was tall, had blue eyes, golden skin.

    So basically all outside cultural influence on China was basically from White people.

    I have debunked your nonsense in 5 min.

  10. buckle's Gravatar buckle
    December 5, 2012 - 3:35 pm | Permalink

    Coon – great name for a white nationalist.

  11. buckle's Gravatar buckle
    December 5, 2012 - 3:33 pm | Permalink

    The one exception to all this change was the Catholic Mass before it was protestantised (or”Dixied”) by denazified German theologians in 1965. These latter being yet another fruit of WWII and the occupation.

    I recently attended a Dominican rite liturgy (celebrated encouragingly by a Filipino national) which has remained unchanged for seven hundred years i.e. it was not wrecked by the 1965 gang. Non-whites are bearable as long as the Mass is at the centre of their lives.

  12. Zachery Abramson's Gravatar Zachery Abramson
    December 5, 2012 - 1:44 pm | Permalink

    China historically and currently is one of the most diverse cultures and societies. Their are 56 recognized ethnicities in China, further more it has been influenced largely by the surrounding areas. Mongol, Jurchen, Indian, Chinese, Manchurian, Middle Eastern Korean, and Japanese cultures have all had a profound effect on each others historical identity. When we look to the East the borders become just as blurred with the Mongolian Empire. The Han Chinese only represents a small part of the country’s history and culture.

  13. Bear's Gravatar Bear
    December 5, 2012 - 1:37 pm | Permalink

    Coons statement, in a book written in 1965 that there was a “Neanderthaloid” admixture in modern Europeans is stunning, since this was confirmed 45 year latter by DNA analysis. The man certainly had gone to very fine levels of investigation.

  14. Andrew Joyce's Gravatar Andrew Joyce
    December 5, 2012 - 11:42 am | Permalink

    I am sceptical of Coon’s belief that the proto-Indo-Europeans were white in the sense that they would resemble us. The great bulk of early Celtic and Germanic folklore relating to dark “trolls“ or “little people“ has been widely interpreted as referring to the pre-Indo-European inhabitants of Central or at least Western Europe. These pygmie types apparently retreated into hiding places (the pre-Scottish picts were known to the Romans as often submerging themselves in bogland to hide). Thus legends tell of these people being elusive and mischievous. I just feel that we can’t accept Coon’s account as entirely plausible.

  15. Tom's Gravatar Tom
    December 5, 2012 - 10:44 am | Permalink

    Cryptozoology is always fun. Just think the Sasquatch or Yeti might be out there lurking in the woods. Thomas Jefferson had reports that the wooly mamouth roamed the northwest—that was one reason for the Rodgers & Clark expedition.

  16. December 5, 2012 - 10:05 am | Permalink

    Well written. Informative. Thank you for the essay.

    You may want to add the recent discovery of blonde blue eyed Pazyryk mummies with some east Asiatic Hunnic admixture, in the Altai mountains and western Mongolia.

    With Siberian ice melting we will come across more such specimens of our Indo-European Ancestors who once ruled the world from Manchuria to Atlantic.

    We should tirelessly fight to restore the glory of our heritage and our people. Ultimately, we have to admit that we and we alone are allowing Jews to strangulate our patrimony.

    No one will restore our future for us. It is up to us to take responsibility for ourselves and do what is necessary.

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