The following is the second of two excerpts from an article, “My journey to race realism,” to appear in the Summer issue of The Occidental Quarterly. Prof. Ray Wolters is Thomas Muncy Keith Professor Emeritus of History at the University of Delaware.
Before 2010, I was aware of evolutionary biology and evolutionary psychology. As mentioned, during the 1990s I began to read American Renaissance, and about the same time one of my chums from grade school and high school, a bank examiner named Gene Stelzer, bent my ear with comments about Darwinism. Gene was also the first person to call my attention to The Occidental Quarterly, a journal I later came to regard as an indispensable guide to understanding White racial consciousness. At the University of Delaware, education professor Bob Hampel kept me informed about some of the best recent books in his field, and social scientist Linda Gottfredson told me about gene-culture co-evolution. But from mainstream historians I heard and read nothing about Darwinism or the interaction of culture and genes, and my own written work was still based primarily on archival research. It was not until 2010, when I was laid low by lung failure and could no longer rummage through archives that I began to read deeply and to think seriously about evolutionary biology and evolutionary psychology. As it happened, at this time I was also thinking about the modern school reform movement, which since about 1990 had become, above all else, an effort to close the achievement gaps that show American Blacks and Latinos lagging behind Whites and Asians on standardized achievement tests.
In some ways, the reformers’ concern with test scores is surprising. In recent international comparisons, African Americans have done better on standardized tests than Blacks in Africa or the Caribbean. Hispanic Americans have done better than Hispanics in Latin America. White Americans are doing better than students in other predominantly-White nations (except Finland). And Asian-American students have done as well as most students in Asia — and better than those in Korea or Japan. These results were achieved, moreover, at a time when an increasing proportion of American students were being reared in single-parent families and a growing proportion of parents did not speak English. Read more