Jewish Intelligence

Eric Turkheimer: Jewish Ethnic Interests Masquerading as Ethical Concerns

Recently behavior geneticist Eric Turkheimer participated in a commentary on Charles Murray and the issue of race differences in intelligence. Since I am not a behavior geneticist, I won’t argue the point that there is no present methodology to test for group differences in traits like IQ, although the recent method of estimating group IQ on the basis of the frequencies of the all the known genes associated with IQ seems promising. I focus here on Turkheimer’s claims on the ethics of studying race differences.

In previous comments on the science of race differences, Turkheimer noted:

Why Race Science is Objectionable

If I may address my fellow Jews for a moment, consider this. How would you feel about a line of research into the question of whether Jews have a genetic tendency to be more concerned with money than other groups? Nothing anti-semitic, mind you, just a rational investigation of the scientific evidence. It wouldn’t be difficult to measure interest in money and materialism, and it wouldn’t surprise me if as an empirical matter Jews scored a little higher on the resulting test than other groups. As a behavioral geneticist I can assure you without reservation that the trait would be heritable, and, if anyone bothered to take the time to find out, specific genes would have small associations with it. Of course, this research program has already been carried out, at least to the extent the relevant technology was available in 1939. While we are at it we could open a whole scientific institute for the scientific study of racial stereotypes, and finally pull together the evidence on sneaky Japanese, drunken Irish, unintelligent Poles, overemotional women and lazy Italians.

This is a naked appeal to the ethnic interests of his ethnic group — exactly the problem with the “scientists” reviewed in The Culture of Critique. Race realists associated with the Alt Right, on the other hand, have tended to go with the data. They accept the findings that the IQs of Ashkenazi Jews and East Asians are higher than White means. The main issue, after all is White identity and White interests in being able to construct their own societies as other groups around the world have done and continue to do — whatever their talents or deficiencies compared to other groups.

Turkheimer continues:

Hopefully I am beginning to offend you. Why? Why don’t we accept racial stereotypes as reasonable hypotheses, okay to consider until they have been scientifically proven false? They are offensive precisely because they violate our intuition about the balance between innateness and self-determination of the moral and cultural qualities of human beings. No reasonable person would be offended by the observation that African people have curlier hair than the Chinese, notwithstanding the possibility of some future environment in which it is no longer true. But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly, and the contention that they are smarter than Africans as ugly, because it is a matter of ethical principle that individual and cultural accomplishment is not tied to the genes in the same way as the appearance of our hair.

The reason we must not delve in to race science thus depends on “intuition.” Unfortunately, we all have different intuitions. Perhaps he is talking about the intuitions of liberal university professors. Or activist Jews. Read more

Simon Schama: A Case Study in Jewish Verbosity and Ethnic Activism

I’ve now spent more than fifteen years researching the Jewish Question and the impact of Jewish influence on the West. During that time I’ve encountered and documented a number of Jews who almost single-handedly encapsulate and characterize the Jewish modus operandi, as well as the hatred that organized Jewry has for our people and our way of life. In the case of cretins like Abraham Foxman and the aesthetically repulsive Hebrews of the Southern Poverty Law Center, the existence of such people is obvious. In other cases, similarly hateful Jews are acting with equal violence against our people and culture, but are doing so in a less obvious manner. Examples are countless, but I’m thinking in particular of individuals like Jonathan Freedland, Anthony Julius, Robert Wistrich, Norman Lebrecht and the academics behind the ‘Whiteness Studies’ hate genre. I have to confess that as much as I have an abiding feeling of enmity toward all of these individuals and their insidious works, I possess a singular ferocity of loathing for Columbia University’s Simon Schama. Schama, as I will presently discuss, is a walking, talking, mincing, gesticulating caricature who, in thought and deed, may as well have crawled from the lurid pages of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. What follows is a case study in Jewish political, academic, and cultural activism.

Schama was born in Marylebone, London. His mother, Gertie (née Steinberg), was from a Lithuanian Ashkenazi Jewish family, and his father, Arthur Schama, was of Sephardi Jewish background. Arthur was a textile merchant who, like many of his co-ethnics, favored risky business practices and flirted with bankruptcy on more than one occasion. In the mid-1940s, following one such bankruptcy, the family moved to Southend-on-Sea in Essex before moving back to the heavily-Jewish area of Golders Green in London. There the young Simon rubbed shoulders with the Saatchi brothers, the future mega-promoters of a vast array of degenerate art — a passion that Schama himself would later indulge in. Read more

Karl Pearson, Immigration, and the War over Jewish Intelligence, 1925–1935

I often take great pleasure from looking into the past and finding, among persons and works of great genius, ideas that we very closely share. Recently I’ve been looking into the life and work of Karl Pearson (1857–1936), a man commonly considered to be one of the founders of modern statistical science. Born in London, Pearson’s formal education began only at age 15 at the city’s University College School. A precocious talent, he later attended King’s college at Cambridge where he won the Third Wrangler position of the Mathematical Tripos in 1878. His initial work after his formal education was as an author, lecturer, and lawyer. In 1884 he was offered a position at University College, London in applied mathematics, where he taught mathematics to young engineering students. He was reported to have been an effective and charismatic teacher, devoting considerable time and energy to these duties while also producing an impressive output of original work in applied mathematics.

Pearson’s mathematical contributions are immense. He pioneered discussions of relativity and antimatter, and in 1892 he wrote The Grammar of Science, a famous work covering many scientific themes. He is also credited with being one of the first mathematicians to truly consider data as essential in scientific inquiry. The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography states that “Pearson was responsible for almost single-handedly establishing the modern discipline of mathematical statistics, including the invention of a number of essential statistical techniques.”

Rather than merely developing new probability theory, Pearson used this theory as a tool with actual data. He subsequently became well-known for his work in various measures of correlation; perhaps the most widely used today is Pearson’s product-moment correlation coefficient. Many of his statistical procedures are still in use, such as Pearson’s “Chi squared goodness of fit test.” In 1901 Pearson established the journal Biometrika, which remains in print today and is still considered to be one of the most important statistical journals. Read more

Jewish population genetics and intelligence revisted

When I reviewed the data on Jewish population genetics for my 1994 book, A People That Shall Dwell Alone, the take home message was that Jews were a Middle Eastern group. But that was before the massive improvements in population genetic methods of recent years. One would think that this would result in a clear picture, but that has not been the case. Data showing a strong Middle Eastern connection was challenged by a paper championing the Khazar hypothesis.

I can’t tell you how many people have sent me emails urging me to endorse the Khazar hypothesis, the logic being that if the Khazar hypothesis is true, then Jews have no biological link to Israel.

But my population genetics guru was quite skeptical about that paper, and now a new paper by Marta Costa et al. puts yet another spin on Ashkenazi origins by finding that around 80% of their mitochondrial DNA has a prehistoric European origin and ruling out the Khazar hypothesis. The new results would likely  indicate that the Ashkenazim would be less Near Eastern and more European, so fans of the Khazar hypothesis may have something to cheer about after all.

Combined with previous Y chromosome studies indicating that  the male line is Middle Eastern, the results suggest a scenario in which Jewish males married European females after traveling to Europe. This has happened elsewhere, as with the Lemba.

This study is getting good reviews, but of course we have to remain open to new findings. Science marches onward.

But taking these results at face value, one might hope that Ashkenazi Jews would feel more kinship with Europe rather than the characteristic posture of hostile outsiders adopted by the organized Jewish community and very common among Ashkenazi Jews generally. But I won’t hold my breath. Such attitudes are far more influenced by social identity processes, which are not sensitive to genetic differences, and according to which Christian Europe is a hated outgroup because of its perceived past history of little more than expulsions and persecution.

Nor do the new findings alter the conception of Judaism as a genetically closed group, with all that implies for an evolutionary analysis of between-group competition. After the original matings in the ancient world, the walls were erected; the new findings indicate very little mtDNA from Eastern Europe. Read more

Jewish Intelligence

Editor’s note: This was originally posted on August 19, 2007 on my website, before TOO was established. I re-post it here to encourage comments and because it remains relevant given continuing interest in Jewish IQ—e.g., Richard Lynn’s The Chosen People: A Study of Jewish Intelligence and Achievement (Whitefish, MT: Washington Summit Publishers, 2011). Lynn finds that the average IQ for Ashkenazi Jews is 110, for Sephardic Jews 98-99, Oriental Jews 91, and Falasha Jews (a largely African group genetically) < 70. Lynn’s book will be reviewed by F. Roger Devlin in the Summer issue of The Occidental Quarterly (see also “Are Jews Smarter“). The focus on IQ in this article does not imply that ethnic networking is unimportant, for example, in admission to elite universities. Thus taking Richard Lynn’s estimates of Ashkenazi Jewish IQ and correcting for the greater numbers of European Whites in America, the ratio of non-Jewish Whites to Jews should be around 7 to 1 (IQ >130) or  4.5 to 1 (IQ > 145). Instead, the ratio of non-Jewish Whites to Jews is around 1 to 1 or less. There is also presumptive ethnic networking at work in particular niches, such as Hollywood and other forms of media where Jews are represented far beyond anything predicted by IQ  (see, e.g., Edmund Connelly’s work and this recent blog on Jewish networking in literature and art). As noted often in TOO, the problem is not that Jews are an elite. The problem is that they have a long track record as a hostile elite —hostile to the people and the culture of the West.

Jewish intelligence has become a hot topic following the publication of a paper by Greg Cochran and Henry Harpending in The Journal of Biological Science. Charles Murray weighed in with an article in Commentary (“Jewish Genius”, April, 2007). Murray’s theory is quite a bit like the one I published in my 1994 book, A People That Shall Dwell Alone (Ch. 7). I discussed eugenic events such as the Babylonian exile in which the elite Israelites were relocated to Babylon and refused to intermarry with those left behind when they returned (as graphically recounted in the Books of Ezra and Nehemiah). I also described a great deal of discrimination against the illiterate in the ancient world, with the effect that such people were excluded from the Jewish community. Marriage to such a person was especially abhorrent. And I recounted the history of Jewish education and Jewish idealization of the scholar, including especially the practice of wealthy Jews marrying their daughters to scholars and providing them with business opportunities. Because wealth was correlated with reproductive success in traditional societies, this had the effect of eugenic selection for intelligence. All of these practices originated in the ancient world and are well attested among both Ashkenazi and Sephardic populations in later centuries. Read more

Review of John Glad’s “Jewish Eugenics”

Jewish Eugenics, by John Glad. Washington, DC: Wooden Shore Publishers, 2011; 464pp. (Downloadable at either www.whatwemaybe or These sites also have Glad’s Future Human Evolution.)

John Glad begins Jewish Eugenics by noting that “much of what might be termed  ‘accepted eugenics narrative’ is in crass discordance with the historical facts” (p. 8). In other words, we are about to enter one of those academic minefields where “truth” is rigorously cleansed to make sure it is compatible with ethnic interests. Indeed, “writing books about Jews used to be a far easier undertaking than it is today, with Jewish anxieties over ‘anti-Semitism’ having been so elevated as to render dispassionate scholarly discourse nearly impossible” (p. 8).

I am not so sure that dispassionate scholarship is impossible, but it is surely the case that findings that diverge from the self-image desired by any ethnic group will surely be vigorously contested by academic activists or, more probably, consigned to oblivion. Dr. Glad assures me that in his case, it is the latter, writing of his frustration at the silence that has greeted his work. Welcome to the club.

As a university professor, Glad is quite attuned to the politics of having a good career. Critics of eugenics, like the notorious Ashley Montagu (a disciple of Franz Boas), get fat honoraria for delivering superficial, factually challenged lectures sponsored by numerous academic departments and programs. (Glad characterizes a lecture by Montagu as “an impressive demonstration of indoctrination” [p. 91].) On the other hand, those who defend eugenics “are subjected to academic shunning” (p. 91), their books are not used in classes and not purchased by academic libraries. They get no invitations to attend conferences or deliver lectures. Read more

Are Jews Smarter?

There’s an article on Jewish intelligence from 2005 in New York, “Are Jews Smarter,” by Jennifer Senior. It’s a story of the good, the bad, and the ugly. Senior identifies herself as Jewish with  the result that, as always, there is a tension between pride in Jewish intelligence and accomplishment and fear that there might be negative consequences if people buy into the idea that Jewish intelligence results in Jews being better able to pursue their interests and, in particular, being better able to influence culture and the political process in a way that conflicts with the interests of non-Jews.

The general tone of the article can be seen from her statement that “Ascribing an ethnic or racial explanation to any trait more ambiguous than skin color is by definition a dangerous idea, the kind of notion that can seep into the political arena with disastrous consequences.” Read more