Richard Lynn, Professor Emeritus of Psychology, University of Ulster
Race, Evolution and Intelligence
Paul Dachslager reviews Richard Lynn’s chef-d’oeuvre
Race Differences in Intelligence: An Evolutionary Analysis, Richard Lynn, second revised edition, 2015, Washington Summit Publishers, Athens, GA, reviewed by Dr Paul Dachslager
This second, revised edition of Richard Lynn’s definitive compilation of racial IQs, first published in 2006, gives many more studies now reaching approximately 500. His principal results are summarised as follows; North-east Asians, IQ 105; Northern and Central Europeans, IQ 100; South Europeans (Balkans, Sicily), IQ 92-96; Arctic peoples, IQ 91; New Zealand Maoris, IQ 90; American Hispanics, IQ 89; Native Americans, IQ 86; Pacific Islanders, IQ 85; South Asians (Turkey, Middle East, Indian Sub-content, IQ 84-90; North Africans, IQ 84; Sub-Saharan Africans, IQ 71; Australian Aborigines, IQ 62; Pygmies, IQ 57; Bushmen, IQ 55.
Lynn points out that these are averages and that there is a wide range of IQs in these populations. For instance, although the average IQ in India is estimated as 82, in the population of around one billion there are a large number of people with high IQs, many of whom now work in the United Kingdom and the United States.
In the second half of the book, Lynn considers the causes of the evolution of these IQ differences during the last 60,000 or so years. His ‘cold winters theory’ proposes that when early peoples migrated from equatorial east Africa into the more northern latitudes of North Africa, South Asia, Europe and Northeast Asia, they encountered more challenging and demanding environments which required greater intelligence to survive. During the cold winters, they had to hunt large animals for food, build fires and shelters and make clothes to keep warm. The colder the winter temperatures and the more northerly the environment, the higher the IQs that perforce evolved. In support of this hypothesis, he notes that the peoples with the highest IQs typically inhabit regions with low winter temperatures, in the more northerly latitudes of Europe and Northeast Asia. He infers also that as early peoples migrated from the warm south into the colder north, their brain size increased to accommodate higher IQs, so that today the average brain size ranges from 1,283 cc in Sub-Saharan Africans to 1,369 cc in Europeans to 1,416 cc in Northeast Asians.
Lynn’s compilation of racial differences in IQs forms the basis of his study with the late Professor Tatu Vanhanen, presented in their book Intelligence: A Unifying Construct for the Social Sciences (2012). They maintained therein that national differences in intelligence explain much of the national differences in educational and cultural achievements and economic development. These several studies represent a major advance in our understanding of many contemporary problems, notably the ongoing mass migration from the poor south to the rich north.
Dr Paul Dachslager is the author of Human Sin or Social Sin: Evolutionary Psychology, Plato and the Christian Logic of Sociology, 2016