On race science

Rose:

“The problem is not that knowledge of such group intelligence differences is too dangerous, but rather that there is no valid knowledge to be found in this area at all. It’s just ideology masquerading as science.”

We make choices every day about the problems we choose to study, and the hypotheses we choose to test. You can’t just pick any question – it needs to be a question for which your inquiry can result in an increase in useful knowledge. In Popper’s language – your hypothesis must by falsifiable in principle, and there is no point doing the work if it’s not falsifiable in practice. In more Bayesian terms, your research ought to be able to adjust your prior belief. Rose argues that in questions of race an intelligence it is simply not possible to do meaningful science. Then there are questions of research ethics and morality.

When you choose to spend your research capital (intellectual and monetary) testing the hypothesis that one ‘racial group’ are less intelligent than another you are supporting prejudice. You are doing this in three ways: by making the question seem civilised; by providing cover for more politically motivated race scientists; by risking producing results that are statistically underpowered or ambiguous such that they can be use to support racism.

I simply can’t see why anyone would touch this kind of research with a ten foot pole.

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1 Comment »

  1. Kaylee said

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