Race mixture: a social or a biological problem?

Posted in Anthropology, Articles, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Media Archive, Social Science on 2012-02-09 04:11Z by Steven

Race mixture: a social or a biological problem?

The Eugenics Review
Volume 41, Number 2 (July 1949)
pages 81-85

A. Dickinson

The ideas of the layman on race are curiously distorted. Race is commonly identified with a given language or culture, with a group living in a common habitat or possessing a single characteristic feature such as pigmentation. Men stubbornly cling to concepts of racial purity and elaborate these into theories of racial superiority or inferiority. Needless to say, this human weakness is often attended by dire results in a world in which people of differing physical traits are being herded ever more closely together as the barriers of distance are gradually broken down…

…Prevalence of Hybridization

Yet objective investigation on scientific lines clearly shows that only the broadest classification is possible in respect of physical traits, a classification which reduces the teeming millions of the world, and the multitude of self-styled races into which they divide themselves, into perhaps no more than five main groups. Likewise empirical proof has been given that intra-racial variability often exceeds inter-racial variability in respect of measurable physical traits…

…We speak in general terms. It is impossible to do more by way of an introduction to a study of race mixture, but it is clear from the foregoing generalizations that concepts of racial purity are largely invalid and that the psychic homogeneity of the human species is much greater than is commonly supposed. It is also evident that differences in language and culture are by no means coincident with differences in physical traits. A rational approach to the question is needed-one which dispenses with what can only be the dead-weight of national ideologies and which acknowledges that an excessive degree af miscegenation must have taken place over thousands of years to account for the present day distribution of physical traits and the variability about a norm which obtains in even the most race-conscious of societies. Given the psychological abhorrence of race mixture which persists as a corollary of untenable theories of racial purity, we must endeavour to assess in quantitative and qualitative terms the indisputable fact of race mixture as it exists in the world to-day…

…Social Aspects of Hybridization

This of course throws into high relief the psychological and social aspects of the question. A strong psychological prejudice against race mixture will inevitably result in the concept of hybrid inferiority. This in turn will often prevent hybrids from revealing their true potentialities. Widely regarded as social outcasts they will find it well-nigh impossible to rise to the position in society which might well be their due. As a consequence their minds will become warped and their personalities stunted. It is not surprising that hybrids, particularly those living alongside their progenitors, commonly reveal a minimum of ability, marked indolence and an astonishing proclivity towards moral laxity. Yet the condition of such people can hardly be attributed to biological factors. Rather is it due to their lack of opportunity in a society which is at once prejudiced and highly irrational in outlook. In the words of Young, ” the social behaviour of hybrids is best considered as a reflection of their cultural milieu than as resulting from biological sources.” Castle, too, makes the same point by contrasting the crossbreeding of black and white and red and white in the United States. The blacks and the mulattoes are visited with strong social disapprobation, their opportunities for advancement are limited, their numbers decrease and, if the mulatto compares favourably with his black progenitors, it is only because in the past the whites, his blood relations, have shown at least a modicum of compassion for their unfortunate offspring, whereas the lot of the pure-blooded Negro has always been an unfortunate one in the land of his enslavement. That the mulattoes will not stand comparison with the whites goes without saying. But their plight should be contrasted with that of the Indian hybrids in whose case there is no strong social prejudice. It should be borne in mind how well they thrive, how they are assimilated back into the white population, how they frequently attain positions of considerable authority and responsibility to which they are fully equal. Here the difference in the results between the aforementioned crossings are not referable to any biological harmony or disharmony, but wholly to the social attitude adopted by the whites, favourable in one case, unfavourable in the other…

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Migration and Race Mixture from the Genetic Angle

Posted in Articles, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Media Archive, Oceania, Politics/Public Policy on 2011-12-05 23:18Z by Steven

Migration and Race Mixture from the Genetic Angle

The Eugenics Review
Volume 51, Number 2 (July 1959)
pages 93-97

Sir Macfarlane Burnet, O.M., F.R.S., Director
Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research

This paper was prepared at the request of the Department of Immigration for discussion by delegates at the Australian Citizenship Convention. The views expressed in it are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Department.

From the long-term point of view, immigration is chiefly important to Australia for the overall changes that it will eventually make in the genetic character of our population. Every growing country that receives substantial immigration from other parts of the world is in a sense a melting-pot from which new combinations of body-build, of skin colour, and even of personality, may eventually emerge. The process is immensely complex and can only be described in broad outline. In many ways our description can be no more than an attempt to interpret the human observations in terms of genetic ideas that have been developed from the study of such very different animals as fruit ffies and mice. Yet the very fact that basically similar gentic laws are evident in the behaviour of mice, of fruit flies, and of bacteria, makes us confident that they are equally applicable to man…

…Advantages and Disadvantages of Race Mixture

Extensive reading has failed to locate a single example where it can be shown that hybrid races or individuals living under circumstances where no social disability attached to their condition, were demonstrably inferior to both parents. Where healthy typical individuals of each race are concerned, the offspring can be expected to show greater physical health than either and-though here the evidence is slighter-a greater likelihood of exceptional mental ability.

Serious attempts have been made to show that where different racial groups mingle, there the likelihood of an outcropping of genius is highest. Kretchmer considered that where the Alpine race containing Neanderthal genes made contact with Nordics in the German speaking parts of Europe, there had appeared an exceptional number of outstanding men. Toynbee generalized that “the geneses of civilization require creative contributions from more races than one”. It seems to be the general rule that there is a lag period of a few centuries between the beginnings of race mixture in a given region and the full flowering of a new culture or civilization.

There are potential genetic disadvantages of race mixture and it is probably true that particularly in later generations than the primary hybrid, occasional individuals with discordant characters, e.g. teeth over-large for the jaw that carries them, can be seen. It has not been shown decisively that such discordancies are more frequent than in people not descended from recent racial mixture…

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Eugenics and Mongrelization [Letter and Response]

Posted in Articles, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Letters, Media Archive, United States on 2011-11-28 03:57Z by Steven

Eugenics and Mongrelization [Letter and Response]

The Eugenics Review
Volume 32, Number 1 (April 1940)
pages 28-30

To the Editor, Eugenics Review

SIR, In order that the eugenics movement shall advance successfully, the eugenics organizations must dissociate their endeavours from the widespread propaganda for race amalgamation and mongrelization. There is little wisdom in breeding selectively among individuals if the results are to be nullified by indiscriminate mixing of the races. Nearly all the arguments against the existence of different races are coming from spokesmen for races that desire admixture to, and absorption by the white race, or Aryan race, using the name in the newer adapted sense. The arguments have utterly failed to change the truth that there are at least three great races-the whites, or Aryans; the Mongolians; and the Negroes. The Jews may be regarded as a sub-race that in some degree, or at least in some countries, may be absorbed by other races.

There has been vastly less race mixture in the northern hemisphere than the amalgamation exponents contend. The United States is not a nation of mixed races, as some writers allege. There has been a small admixture of American Indian and Mexican in some of the western states, and a small admixture of Jews in some of the cities. There are about twelve million Negroes, who have a small fraction of widely diffused white blood, due mainly to miscegnation on the southern plantations before the Civil War. But there is practically no Negro blood in the one hundred and ten million whites, who are almost purely of European descent and have absolutely no intention of amalgamating with the Negroes.

The white race is unquestionably uniquely beautiful and is in many respects of superior intelligence. To mix the white features with other races would destroy the white beauty for ever. The white race should maintain its purity and should further develop its characteristics…

…The mixing of races would produce mongrels lacking the distinctive qualities and values of all races. Eugenics means, not only breeding from the superior and eliminating the unfit among individuals, but also similar procedure as between the races. The white race idealizes a pure white race and further development of its characteristics. There can be no idealization of a mongrel humanity, except among races that desire admixture with whites and thus acknowledge a belief in their own inferiority. This has been the almost universal attitude of the white race, at least in the United States. The cruel persecution of the Jews in Germany caused a temporary reaction in favour of race solidarity, but with the adjustment of the Jewish problem in some manner, the real attitude of the white race will become more outspoken and unmistakable. The eugenics organizations must act along these lines, else their efforts will fail and new organizations will be formed to strive for the true eugenic ideals.

1510 Lincoln Avenue
Lakewood, Ohio, U.S.A.

[Response from the Editor]

Some of the statements in the above letter must not be allowed to pass without comment. The implication in the first sentence, that the eugenics movement associates its endeavours with “propaganda for race amalgamation and mongrelization” is, as far as this country is concerned, a travesty of the facts. We should be much surprised to learn that it is true of the eugenics movement in any country. The views of this Society, as set forth in its Statement of Aims and Objects, is  “that further knowledge of the results of such crosses is needed in order to distinguish between the effects of unfavourable hereditary and environmental influences and to frame a practical eugenic policy.” This does not mean that we do not share Mr. Eshleman’s disquietude at the “indiscriminate mixing of the races,” but we should regard it as a nice question whether that is any more undesirable than the indiscriminate mating of persons belonging to the same race.

The assumption in the second paragraph would almost certainly be rejected by most competent anthropologists to-day. The plain fact that there is no such thing as an Aryan race is in no way altered by the device of using “Aryan” in its ” newly adapted sense.” The only assemblage of human beings to which this purely linguistic term may be applied is the heterogenous body of ethnic and national groups who share the common peculiarity of speaking the Aryan or Indo-European languages. The “great white race” represents in fact a somewhat elastic conception, but however arbitrarily its limits are defined it is difficult to see how they could exclude the majority of Jews. The fact, however, that they would certainly not include the indigenous Jewish communities which exist in both Abyssinia and China is an indication of how far-to quote Huxley and Haddon—”the term Jew is valid more as a socio-religious or pseudonational description than as an ethnic term in any genetic sense.”

The claim that “there has been vastly less race mixture in the northern hemisphere” than is sometimes alleged, may be questioned in the light of some data which have been submitted to us for publication by Mr. J. C. Trevor, formerly one of the Eugenics Society’s Darwin Research Fellows and now University Lecturer in Anthropology at Cambridge. In Mr. Trevor’s paper, for which we hope to find room in our next issue, the ratio of mixed bloods (i.e. persons of partly European and partly non-European stock) to the total population of the United States is given as slightly over 7 per cent, Admittedly this figure can at best be only an approximation, but including as it does in its basis Kuczynski’s statement that to count 6o per cent of the negro inhabitants of that country as mulatto would be “a most conservative estimate,” it is more likely to understate the facts than overstate them. It is noteworthy that according to an eminent American scholar, the number of negroes of full blood was unduly exaggerated in the 1920 U.S. census, the last in which an attempt was made to assess the mulatto element by itself. And it need hardly be added that the familiar phenomenon of “passing for white,” with its inevitable consequences, must not be overlooked in examining the contention that “there is practically no negro blood in the one hundred and ten million whites.”…

Read the entire letter and response here.

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The Mixing of Races and Social Decay

Posted in Articles, Caribbean/Latin America, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Media Archive, Social Science, United Kingdom, United States on 2011-06-22 03:39Z by Steven

The Mixing of Races and Social Decay

Eugenics Review
Volume 41, Number 1 (April 1949)
pages 11–16

The Right Rev. E. W. Barnes, Sc.D., F.R.S. (1874-1953)
Biship of Birmingham, England

I have chosen to address you on a subject of great importance. With regard to it strong differences of opinion exist. As we consider various aspects of the subject we grope our way uncertainly.

Let us begin with statements that all will accept.

Some Facts of Inheritance

First, the various races of mankind interbreed freely with one another. International enmity, racial prejudice, cultural differences all seem, speaking generally, impotent to prevent interbreeding.

Secondly, the extension of world trade and of transport facilities is steadily increasing the mixture of races and in consequence the likelihood of interbreeding.

I add a further statement that is steadily winning acceptance; physical and psychical qualities are inherited by the same laws of inheritance. As an illustration of this statement we may say that from a tuberculosis parent a tendency to tuberculosis can be inherited; likewise from a drunken parent a tendency to drunkenness can be inherited. In either case, in mating, the dangerous gene or genes may be rejected, or they may be handed on as recessives; but, if rejection or subordination does not take place, the evil tendency will show itself when the environment gives it a chance.

What we have to insist upon in addition to the above fundamental facts is that the complex of desirable qualities, or modes of behaviour and of appreciation, which we call civilization, is a recent acquisition of humanity: it may easily be destroyed or, at least, injured. Our civilization is a fragile thing, which can only be preserved by the education of each successive generation.

And the most careful education, painstaking and thorough though it be, at times fails. Such failure is, it seems, especially likely to occur when the type of civilization which the education aims at producing differs markedly from that which may be called ancestral.

Unsatisfactory “Pockets” in our Society

It is much to be regretted that we lack authoritative knowledge which will enable us to forecast such failure. There is general agreement that in our industrial areas, and in some of our villages, “pockets” of feeblemindedness exist: the children from families in these pockets are expected by elementary teachers to be-and in fact often are backward at school. It seems certain that mental dullness is inherited more often than not. But though “pockets” are formed by half-breeds, if we may for convenience so describe children who are the offspring of different racial stocks, and though children from these “pockets” fairly often prove unsatisfactory to their teachers, it is difficult to know how far their defects are due in innate limitations rather than to harmful home influences. As we put the inquiry we sometimes receive over-confident opinions: colour prejudice, which in Britain is instinctive and strong, tends to distort judgment.

There is no doubt that grave social decay often appears in places like seaports where races mix. But we must remember that, when there is no race mixture, if war leads to conditions under which children run wild, or defective housing creates circumstances leading to immorality, even good stocks will tend to decay. The best we can say is that, when conditions improve, recovery can be rapid. But, I repeat, civilization is fragile: it is a pattern of lving more easily broken than repaired…

…Mixture of Races in South Africa and West Indies

I have left until the end of my survey the most important and difficult of all aspects of the mixing of races, the problem of the Negro in South Africa and in the U.S.A. In each country the ” colour problem ” is a domestic political issue of the first magnitude. Dislike of intermarriage and fear of Negro domination show themselves in white attempts at restrictive legislation. Anxiety is greater in South Africa because there the white man is an intruder; and developments in the West Indian islands suggest that ultimately a partially coloured population will be universal. Descendants of Dutch settlers naturally wish to retain a racial heritage of which they are rightly proud. Their civilization is far higher than that of the Negroes among whom they live and distinctly higher than that of the Indians who seek admission as traders. Without Negro labour in the gold mines the industry could not be carried on as at present; and, in fact, climatic conditions make it natural that manual labour should be supplied by the Negro. We have, in fact, a situation which has recurred throughout history. Two races live side by side: the one of higher culture is dominant but increases slowly in numbers: the other becomes increasingly necessary because it supplies manual labour; it has also the higher birthrate. Inter-breeding takes place and in the end a mixed race with a lower civilization is evolved.

The Negro Problem in the U.S.A.

In the U.S.A., as is well known, the outcome of the Civil War was freedom for the slaves coupled, theoretically, with full civil rights. The actual denial of the franchise in the Southern States has been notorious. Of recent years Negroes have been migrating to the north, where their political influence is being felt. Such migration is leading to further racial admixture. In thirty American States legislation to prevent marriage between whites and Negroes exists—in one instance a Negro has been defined as one in whom there is more than three sixteenths of Negro blood. The California Supreme Court has recently declared such legislation unconstitutional. Americans, whether they like the prospect or not, must accept the fact that a Negro strain in the population is spreading. How should this outcome be regarded?

The earlier stages of disreputable intercourse between white and black belong to the past. Coloured people in all but remote areas of the United States of America have acquired a mixture of white blood. Whenever a so-called Negro makes his mark in public life, inquiry almost always shows a mixed ancestry. In fact, the American “Negro” is already of a different race from the African from whom he is partially descended. This fact is probably the cause of the wide divergence of American opinion as to the right attitude towards “black” citizens. Those who live in Southern States where the Negro strain in the coloured population is strong are prejudiced against any form of political or social equality. Those who know the qualities and potentialities of what we may call the “new” Negro have no such prejudice. The “new” Negro is already developing a characteristic culture. His religion is a form of Christianity which, though intellectually primitive, is emotionally strong. For “Negro spirituals” a musician of the quality of Walford Davies had great admiration. Some plays and stories due to “new” Negroes show the beginning of new forms of art…

Read the entire article here.

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The study of racial mixture in the British Commonwealth: Some anthropological preliminaries

Posted in Anthropology, Articles, Media Archive, Social Science, United Kingdom on 2011-06-21 05:18Z by Steven

The study of racial mixture in the British Commonwealth: Some anthropological preliminaries

Eugenics Review
Volume 32, Number 4 (January 1941)
pages 114-120

K. L. Little
The Duckworth Laboratory
University Museum of Ethnology, Cambridge

In a recently published and noteworthy symposium entitled “Race Relations and the Race Problem,” eleven prominent American writers reviewed the sociological implications of racial contacts on the American continent, with special reference to problems arising out of the very large racial minority in the U.S.A. of some 13 million American Negroes. One of these authors, Professor S. J. Holmes, has pointed out elsewhere that there are three racial possibilities in view for the United States. The entire population may become “white”; it may become “black”; or “whites” and “blacks” may fuse together into a hybrid stock. This last possibility seems to be fairly well substantiated by the anthropometric material collected by Professor Melville J. Herskovits, who in his turn attributes the rise and growth of this new hybrid “race” to the effect of social selection.

Although the interest shown in North America to problems of racial relations in particular, and to human genetics in general, as proved by the articles in such journals as the American Journal of Physical Anthropology, is readily understandable, it stands out in very sharp relief to the lukewarm attention afforded to such matters in the countries which compose the British Commonwealth. The latter empire comprises practically speaking members of every major and minor race group in the world, and so contains the elements of most possible forms of human miscegenation, yet official information regarding the actual racial compositions of these populations is often very incomplete, and particularly so in the colonial areas where it would be most interesting. Nor, anthropologically speaking, can much of the semi-official data, as displayed, for example, in such books of reference as the Encyclopaedia Britannica by the use of phrases as “the higher-type races,” “black low type,” etc., be considered more satisfactory. The fact, however, that nothing like a complete anthropometric survey has yet been instituted even in this country, may help to explain, though not to condone, the lack of more exact information elsewhere…

…How Will Racial Relations be Affected in the Future?

In sociological science it is no more than a truism to state that the structure of no society is static. This would be clear even if the disruptions achieved by such forces as war did not make the presence of the dynamic factors which are continuously changing and modifying institutions and traditions even more obvious. It may, therefore, be thought unquestionable that present forms of racial or social segregations will undergo corresponding alteration, becoming either more elastic or more rigid in the process. In the former event then not only will the racial composition of populations change considerably, but many new “racial” populations will emerge. In this light, then, eugenic considerations involve not only the forms of racial hybridization at present in force, but the far wider possibilities of the future; since it is but reasonable to suppose that in human genetics no less than elsewhere, the biological results become more diverse as new and additional factors are added. Moreover, specific as well as general consideration seems all the more necessary, when it is remembered that answers stlll to be provided for certain ambiguously interpretable phenomena are in a sense but the preface to wider fields…

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Racial mixture in Great Britain: some anthropological characteristics of the Anglo-negroid cross (A Preliminary Report)

Posted in Anthropology, Articles, Media Archive, United Kingdom on 2011-06-21 04:46Z by Steven

Racial mixture in Great Britain: some anthropological characteristics of the Anglo-negroid cross (A Preliminary Report)

Eugenics Review
Volume 33, Number 4 (January 1942)
pages 112-120

K. L. Little
The Duckworth Laboratory
University Museum of Ethnology, Cambridge

With the exception of a large number of family studies secured by Miss R. M. Fleming, little anthropological attention has so far been given to the question of racial crossing in this country, although the presence of some fairly extensive hybrid communities in most of our sea-port cities affords an excellent opportunity for anthropometric investigation, particularly in respect to the Anglo-Negroid cross. The present paper, comprising a brief statistical analysis of the measurements of some ninety Anglo-Negroid or “Coloured” children, together with a smaller “White ” sample of forty drawn from the same environment, represents what it is hoped may be merely a prelude to a wider and statistically more adequate survey of the subject, especially as far as the adult element is concerned. The present data, including those of a small number of adults with one F1 adult exception, were gained entirely from a community in Cardiff, where all the subjects were born. In the course of the enquiry the opportunity was taken of examining a further sample of some eighty subjects mainly of Anglo-Arab and Anglo-Mediterranean parentage. These, however, have been omitted from the present discussion for considerations of space. The Anglo-Negroid adult sample is as yet too small for statistical treatment, and has similarly been omitted, although a few particulars as to its characters are given below.

Briefly stated, the aspects of racial crossing it is intended to cover comprise such questions as the segregation of both quantitative and qualitative physical characters in the hybrid population, the comparative variability of the respective groups, and comparative differences in growth and sex differences. In the light of these considerations it was decided to. employ as wide an assortment of characters as was practicable, and having regard to the specific racial stocks involved, i.e. Negroid and Caucasoid (White), to give special attention to those features which show clear differentiation between the parent stocks. In terms of the present facilities these may be listed as skin, hair and eye colour, lip thickness, nasal width and height and the corresponding nasal index, and the ratio of nasal depth to width. In addition, a fairly large number of characters possessing genetical rather than racial significance were chosen, and these included such features as head length, head breadth, facial length, etc., etc., from which the relevant cephalic, facial, fronto-jugal and other indices were obtained. Finally, two modifiable characters in the shape of stature and sitting height were included….

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Some anthropological characteristics of hybrid populations

Posted in Anthropology, Articles, Media Archive on 2011-03-15 01:17Z by Steven

Some anthropological characteristics of hybrid populations

The Eugenics Review
Volume 30, Number 1 (April 1938)
pages 21-31

J. C. Trevor, Leonard Darwin Research Fellow

It should be explained that “hybrid” is used here in its restricted zoological sense, viz. as relating to intraspecific rather than to interspecific crosses. The adjective “mixed,” though convenient, can be misleading, since there is no acceptable definition of what constitutes a “pure” human race. For the purposes of the present discussion, “hybrid” will be taken to apply to crosses between races comprised within different major divisions of mankind such as the “varieties” of Blumenbach and the main “groups” of Haddon, Hooton and other anthropological systematists…

..The nine hybrid series concerned in this paper may be briefly described as follows:

(1) Norfolk Islanders, 113 adult male and female subjects, the descendants of six mutineers of H.M.S. Bounty and from ten to twelve Polynesian women from Tahiti and possibly two of its neighbouring islands, measured and described by Shapiro (1929). They are compared with 153 male and female Society Islanders, whose measurements were taken by Handy and reduced by Shapiro, and with 6,975 “English” and 381 Oxfordfshire villagers, whose measurements were taken by Galton and by Buxton and Blackood, respectively, and reduced by the writer. The genealogical records of the Norfolk Islanders have been carefully kept since about 1790, and any influx of fresh blood invarably been noted.

(2) Half-Blood Sioux, 77 adult male subjects including some described as a quarter and others as three-quarters Indian, whose meaurements were taken by Boas and eight assistants and reduced by Sullivan (1920). European ancestry is said to be French, Scotch, English and Irish. They are compared with 540 full-blood Sioux, measured by the same observers, and with 727 “Old American” Whites, measured and described Hrdlicka (1925). Herskovits (1930) has provided several constants of variation for the last series, and the writer a few others.

(3) Ojibwa-Whites, 8o adult male subjects, principally from Minnesota, representing various degrees of intermixture between women and French and Scotch which has been “continuous and cumulative” since 1660. They are described by Jenks (1916) and have been compared with 24 full-blood Ojibwa (all that could be obtained) and with 100 Minnesota French and 50 Minnesota Scotch, also measured by them. The constants of variation of these four studies have been computed by the writer.

(4) Yucatecans, 88o adult male subjects, a product of intermixture between Spanish immigrants into Mexico and Maya Indians during a period of some 350 years, measured and described by Williams (1931). They are compared with 77 presumably unmixed Mayas, measured and described by Steggerda (1932b), and with 416 Andalusians measured and described by Hulse (1933), for stature, and 79 subjects from all parts of Spain, whose measurements were taken by Barras and reduced by Williams, for cephalic and facial characters.

(5) Jamaican “Browns,” 165 male and female subjects of mixed White and Negro ancestry from Jamaica, measured by Steggerda and described by Davenport and himself (1929). They are compared with one series of 100 Whites of British and German descent and with another of 105 full-blood Negroes, also measured by Steggerda, both coming from the island of Jamaica and its dependencies. The Whites cannot be said to represent ideal comparative material, and as a large proportion of immature subjects is included in all three series, means based on their absolute measurements would appear to be unreliable. Consequently only indices, which are less likely to be affected by possible growth changes, have been used in the present comparison. It is unfortunate that the means and constants of variation provided by Davenport and Steggerda were determined by very crude statistical methods and that mistakes also occur in their computation.

(6) American Negroes of Mixed Blood, 254 adult male subjects of European and Negro ancestry, principally from various parts of the United States, measured and described by Herskovits (1930). Genealogies were obtained from each subject, who was then classified with regard to the proportions of White and Negro ancestry he possessed, three main divisions being recognized: (i) more Negro than White, (ii) approximately equal amounts of Negro and White, and (iii) more White than Negro. The number of individuals in each of these divisions makes them, in general, adequate for separate statistical treatment. They are compared with an unmixed American Negro series of 109 individuals, also measured by Herskovits, and with Hrdlicka’s “Old Americans.”

(7) Boer-Hottentot Crosses (the so-called “Bastaards” of Rehoboth), 74 adult male subjects of six or seven generations of mixed Boer and Hottentot descent from South-West Africa, measured and described by Fischer (1913). Fischer, like Herskovits, divides his material into genealogical classes representing different proportions of Boer and Hottentot ancestry. None of these, however, is really large enough for statistical purposes, and the measurements have been pooled to form a general Bastaard series, which is compared with 74 Hottentots, measured by Schultze Jena (1928), and, in default of local Boers, with 70 Dutch, whose forbears come from the northern provinces of the Netherlands, measured and described by Steggerda (4932a). The general Bastaard constants of variation and those of the Hottentots have been computed by the writer.

(8) Kisar Mestizos, 132 adult male and female subjects of mixed Dutch and Indonesian ancestry from Kisar, a small island in the Sunda archipelago, some thirty-five miles east of Timor. They were measured and described by Rodenwaldt (1927), who ascribes their origin to the seventeenth century. The mestizos are divided by him into genealogical classes, but these are too small for satisfactory statistical analysis, and the material has again to be treated as a whole. For comparative purposes, 64 Kisarese, also measured by Rodenwaldt, and Steggerda’s Dutch are used.

(9) Anglo-Indians, “new style,” 145 adult male subjects of mixed European and Indian ancestry from Calcutta, whose measurements were taken by Annandale, first reduced by Mahalanobis (1922-31) and later, with the exclusion of some immature individuals, by the writer. There is almost a complete absence of reliable information concerning their origin and it has been found impossible to select suitable material from Indian senes for a comparison of means, though in view of their very complex racial antecedents they can be retained for the study of variability…

Read the entire article here.

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Whatever action may be taken to prevent such intermixture in the future, if it can be proved to be undesirable, it certainly seems a bad policy of citizenship to penalize half-castes for a fault of birth for which they are in no way responsible.

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2010-12-10 03:01Z by Steven

For some time past the writer has been in close contact with girls of Anglo-Chinese and Anglo-Negro origin who are unable to find employment because social stigma refuses to allow them to mix in our society in the ordinary way. They are British citizens, and they are the weakest of our citizens, and as such need protection. Whatever action may be taken to prevent such intermixture in the future, if it can be proved to be undesirable, it certainly seems a bad policy of citizenship to penalize half-castes for a fault of birth for which they are in no way responsible. Liverpool, always to the fore in attempts towards civic betterment, has formed an “Association for the Welfare of Half-Caste Children” (Hon. Sec., Mr. G. E. Haynes, B.Sc., University Settlement, Nile Street, Liverpool), and a wholetime research worker [Muriel E. Fletcher] has been appointed. We hope that other seaport towns may soon follow this example of scientific research into a serious problem…

Rachel M. Fleming, “Human hybrids in various parts of the world,” The Eugenics Review, Volume 21, Number 4, (January 1930) 257–263.

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Half-Caste [Book Review]

Posted in Articles, Book/Video Reviews, Media Archive on 2010-12-07 06:06Z by Steven

Half-Caste [Book Review]

The Eugenics Review
Volume 29, Number 2 (July 1937)
pages 141-142

Reviewed by Michael Fielding

Dover, Cedric. Half-Caste. London, 1937. Secker & Warburg. Pp. 324. Price 1os. 6d.

This book is dedicated to a member of the Council of the Eugenics Society. So if we are a bad lot, as bad as the author in his handpicked quotations from very back numbers of the review implies, there is at least one righteous person among us. It would be interesting to know why Mr. Dover, who carefully tells us that he completed this work in October 1936, and who has been in fairly close contact with the work and personalities of this Society, did not think it was anywhere worth mentioning that earlier in that year the Eugenics Society elected a Darwin Research student for the express purpose of studying the problems of race mixture; which is not a very sensible way of spending its money if the subject is one about which it has made up its mind. In the only reference that we can find to the Society’s present views on ethnic-crossing Mr. Dover tempers his disapproval, but so grudgingly and ungenerously as to give further point to his attack. The fact is that against eugenics Mr. Dover has much the same kind of prejudices that many persons have against the products of race-mixture. We believe that both he and they are mistaken. Mr. Dover would correct his errors by reading the Eugenics Review; they by reading his admirably written Half-Caste

His theme, summarized in a short sentence, is that there is no genuine scientific case against miscegenation. What often masquerades as such, and is presented as a case based upon the objective study of genetical and anthropological data, proves on Mr. Dover’s examination to be no more than a rationalization of colour prejudices, imperialism, and xenophobia. “To-day there are no half-castes because there are no fullcastes.”

“Accepting the validity of the racial view,” he writes, “it becomes clear that the attributes and status of marginal communities are essentially functions of their physical and social environment, and not of Divine displeasure or some mysterious incompatibility of ‘blood,’ a fluid which has nothing to do with informed social discussion. Certainly, there are disharmonic and socially maladjusted individuals in such communities. Perhaps, too, their incidence is higher than it is among more integrated groups, though that remains to be proved, but they are susceptible to the same methods of improvement that are applied to ‘pure’ peoples. I subscribe without qualification to the prevention of undeniably dysgenic matings, whether exogamous or endogamous, but not to the conceit that colour and economic success are indices of desirability.”…

Read the entire review here.

[Note from Steven F. Riley:  For more information about Cedric Dover, read Lucy Bland’s “British Eugenics and ‘Race Crossing’: a Study of an Interwar Investigation.”]

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Some Refelctions on Eugenics and Religion

Posted in Health/Medicine/Genetics, Media Archive, Religion on 2010-11-28 03:43Z by Steven

Some Refelctions on Eugenics and Religion

Eugenics Review
Volume 18, Number 1 (April 1926)
pages 7-14

The Right Rev. E. W. Barnes, ScD., Hon. D.D., F.R.S. (1874-1953)
Bishop of Birmingham, England

The Galton Lecture delivered before the Eugenics Education Society at their Meeting in London on Tuesday, February 16th, 1926.

Eugenics is the science of human betterment. Its object is to discover how we may breed better human beings. The eugenist seeks to improve human racial stocks in the belief that he can thereby quicken the process of civilisation. He fixes attention primarily on the individual and not on his surroundings. He is concerned with nature rather than nurture, with the innate qualities which the individual inherits rather than with the environment in which those qualities have an opportunity of growth and expression. Eugenics and Sociology are thus complementary to one another. The extravagant eugenist says that the swine makes the stye. The extravagant sociologist says that the stye makes the swine. Neither statement expresses the full truth and even expert biologists differ widely as to the extent to which the balance of truth inclines one way or the other.

It cannot he disputed that the innate good qualities which a man inherits fail to develop in bad surroundings. Ignorance, dirt, vicious example and abject poverty degrade personality. They prevent the growth of that which is best in a child and stimulate its baser instincts. So strong in the life of a child are the influences of what the psychologists call association and suggestion that many think that environment is of more importance than heredity. It must be admitted that our knowledge as to what constitutes ‘heredity’ lacks precision. We are ignorant as to how far a child receives from its parents at conception a set of physical and psychical fundamentals which no environment will change. But statistical enquiries in general confirm the common saying that ‘like begets like.’ We have, moreover, to remember that civilisation is a racial product. The forces of association and suggestion which act on any individual within it, no less than most of his physical surroundings, are the creation of the race. If the racial stock be good such forces and physical conditions will gradually become more beneficial. If the stock be poor, both its physical environment and mental atmosphere will gradually degenerate. The ultimate creative power of a civilisation resides in the innate racial qualities of the people which make it, whatever be the process by which those qualities were initially produced.

No nation is homogeneous. Probably all races result from a blend of peoples of different types. A so-called pure race is one which has lived so long free from alien intrusion that a uniform type has been gradually evolved. In such a race the fundamentals due to heredity have been thoroughly mixed. Among its members there is therefore a naturally strong social cohesion. Individuals think, feel, and act in much the same way. In particular there will be uniformity of religious outlook. For a pure race what Disraeli called ‘the religion of all sensible men’ is a definite entity.

When a nation is mixed and, in particular, when one race imposes itself upon another there can be no such unity. At first the apparent civilisation will be that of the dominant race. Culture will be created by the ruling aristocracy: and the populace will accept organisation by which it benefits, though this be based on principles and ideas with which it has little sympathy or understanding. This situation probably existed when Greek civilisation reached its zenith. Ultimately the ruling stocks, died out, dissipated by war or luxury. Such of their descendants as survived were the offspring of mixed marriages, racially impure. Now when two races are thus mixed the individual seems to lack stability of organisation. The characteristics derived from his parents are associated rather than blended. Probably it is only after a fairly large number of generations that a new type of harmony is created. In the early generations the physical characters of one or other of the parental types may be dominant: but the recessive strain cannot be ignored; and I believe that in the fundamentals of the mind there is disharmony. The distrust of half-castes is not the outcome of mere prejudice. They are often unstable in character. In popular phrase ‘you never know what they will do next.’ It is impossible to foretell which side of their mental inheritance will be uppermost on any particular occasion.

After a sufficient number of generations a mixed race evolves a unity, a unity in diversity, of its own. Which of the two strands which go to make it is dominant? The answer seems to be that which is indigeneous to the soil. Black and white in England mate and white survives. Black and white in Jamaica mate and black survives. There seems little doubt that in ancient Greece the original population gradually asserted itself. Most certainly the great intellectual achievements of the Golden Age were gradually ignored; they were submerged by primitive folk-beliefs thrust up from the populace. Moreover where the physical characters of one of two mixed races prove the stronger, the mental qualities of that race are usually dominant; and vice versa. The half-caste in Jamaica not only becomes darker in successive generations but he also becomes more negroid in his habit of mind. Language, as we know, is no criterion of racial origin. But ideas and especially religious ideas are a very good criterion as to which strain in a mixed race has proved the stronger. The religious practices and beliefs of the black Republic of Hayti are not, according to good observers, vastly different from those of the African jungle…

Read the entire article here.

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