Re: Buzzwords (was)Judging Beauty (the sociobiological big three!)

Date: Sun May 07 2000 - 19:04:12 MDT

In a message dated 5/7/2000 5:25:40 PM Pacific Daylight Time, writes:

> Oh, I agree completely. But please do not exempt Gould from the category of
> thinkers whose theories are made to fit the social ramifications they
> prefer. Gould's scientific work is not generally held in high regard by
> other paleontologists. His trendy politics are another story. Since, as he
> once said in an interview, he "learned [his] Marxism at [his] father's knee"
> many people -- although I would hope few on THIS list! -- are willing to
> overlook the weakness of his theories.

Yes, of course, and I think he is aware of the particular foibles which
plague his opinions, if not empowered to change them. I am not sure that I
understand how his theories are weakened by his dad; Marxism has little to do
with the land snails, or slugs or whatever he studies. Whether I am on THIS
list or any other, regarding his politics: I have no problem with tolerating
other people's viewpoints, nor his Jewish/Atheist/Liberal persona.

The book I am speaking of is called "The Mismeasure of Man' . It is not
theoretical, or scientific... it's just a rare historical view, documenting
(somewhat humorously) various (at the time highly respectable, though now
laughable) scientific experiments in which race and genetics were analyzed to
account for certain hegemonous nationalists to posit that they deserve a
biologically "superior" intelligence over other races. Phrenology for
instance. It is amusing.

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