John Enders, Jonas Salk, and the eradication of polio

Perhaps you've heard the claims: Were it not for Jewish genius, we would find ourselves in a world still afflicted by polio epidemics (continue reading).

Hrdlicka: A new Uncle Sam is in the making (1927)

Anthropologist Ales Hrdlicka on the "Uncle Sam" type:
We do not know who created the effigy of "Uncle Sam." The name itself, as is well known, dates from 1812 or 1813, and is assumed to have been simply a play on the letters "U. S." It was apparently first applied to a well-known Government servant. But the graphic representation of the "Uncle Sam" type appears later. It is somewhat provincial. It was never quite adopted by the Farther South, and it is not quite at home in the West. Its essential characteristics are a spare but sinewy frame, good but not very tall stature and a thin, shrewd but kind face, with eyes full of humor. The whole picture embodies picturesque conservatism, shrewd politics and, above all, unbounded patriotism.

Such a physical type belongs primarily to the Yankee territory. It does not agree with the prevailing types in the large cities of the country, in the North Central States, in parts of the South, in the pioneer West, Southwest and Northwest, nor with those in Alaska and our possessions. In all these regions it is the newer American type that is emerging.
Hrdlicka observes:
given time, aggregates of any groups and any number of groups of people, particularly if all belong to one and the same fundamental race will fuse and tend to develop a new resultant, new prevalent type, characteristic of that particular nationality. [. . .] America, too, may develop a prevailing type of its own.
Based on Hrdlicka's studies of "Old Americans":
it may be seen that the ideal "Uncle Sam" type was not far from the true one. A little taller stature, a bit less hooked nose, perhaps a trace shorter arms, and the rest fits nicely.

But this type over a large part of the country tends to be superseded by another, newer type. If the old American families could remain without further admixture for several more centuries, the type would undoubtedly be further crystallized and fixed; but there is not much hope that this may be accomplished. Instead of that, there is developing the newer American type, which has already been mentioned. [. . .]

The Neo-American type will be in all probability, on the average, tall, more sanguine and somewhat less spare than the old. It will remain an intermediary white type in pigmentation, head form and other aspects. It will show for a long time a wider range of individual and local variation in all respects. And it may well be expected to be a wholesome and effective type [. . .]

"Cousin William," then, will be tall, well nourished, with a good-sized, well-filled head, though more or less bald, and with an oval, also well-filled, intelligent but frank, jovial, "enjoy-and-let-enjoy," beardless face, and smiling, mixed-light pair of eyes, fond always of a good story, a thoroughly good sport, without hypocrisy or malice, and ready for anything big or ingenious or highly profitable or for politics, at any time. A fine, big shrewd but generous young or old boy, in general.
Czech immigrant Hrdlicka assures the reader:
The future of the older American stock need cause no concern. [. . .] None of these newcomers is physically so different from the older stock that the admixture with them could be regarded as of possible biological danger.
To close, here's the inflammatory opinion of Georges Vacher de Lapouge on the physical type of the Indo-Europeans:
As regards physical type, however, the image evoked by the name Aryan differs according to the author that one reads. For Mortillet, Topinard, or Drumont, the Aryan is an averred brachycephalic, resembling the chestnut peddler on our streets or the typical peasant of Piedmont, Auvergene, or Savoy. If the author is Ammon, Penka, or Wilser, the image is that of the typical globe-trotter from England or the "Uncle Sam" of the Yankees--lank-bodied, dolichocephalic, leptoprosopic, usually blond, adventurous, and aggressive. In my view, both these types were represented among the Aryans, but the dominant classes among them, the builders of the Aryan civilization, were of the type of "Uncle Sam," or, to use the terminology most suitable from the anthropological point of view, were of the race H. Europaeus.
Reference: Ales Hrdlicka. A NEW UNCLE SAM IS IN THE MAKING; Anthropology Finds Emerging From the Melting Pot "A Fine, Big, Shrewd but Generous Young Or Old Boy," Who Is Destined to Replace the Familiar Yankee as the Typical American A NEW UNCLE SAM IN THE MAKING. The New York Times. January 16, 1927, Sunday. Section: MAGAZINE, Page SM3, 3233 words.

Related posts:

Highly divergent ancient hominin mtDNA sequence

Svante Paabo assumes "some new creature" "carried this mitochondrial genome out of Africa about a million years", as do most commentators. It strikes me that a multiregionalist explanation is as consistent if not more consistent with the evidence at hand. If we entertain the possibility that "African Eve" ultimately descends from Eurasian Homo erectus, we don't need to posit some unknown intermediate "out of Africa" event.

Reference: Johannes Krause, Qiaomei Fu, Jeffrey M. Good, Bence Viola, Michael V. Shunkov, Anatoli P. Derevianko & Svante Pääbo. The complete mitochondrial DNA genome of an unknown hominin from southern Siberia. Nature advance online publication 24 March 2010. doi:10.1038/nature08976.

Miscellaneous links

Audacious Epigone on crusade calumnies. A low GI (glycemic index) and high MUFA Mediterranean diet performed better (for HDL and glycemia) than traditional Med or ADA diet. Napoleon's hair found in Sydney. Faces of America and Genetic Genealogy Testing. What makes you unique? Not genes so much as surrounding sequences, says Stanford study. Popular Science archives. Who is a Jew? DNA can hold the key. Linking the sub-Saharan and West Eurasian gene pools: maternal and paternal heritage of the Tuareg nomads from the African Sahel. Y-chromosomes of Albanian populations.

Nauseating speech by lady president of Princeton

I don't feel like replying to this at length, but I found the conclusion noteworthy:
It is certain that debates within the scientific community about whether the historic descriptors of race or ethnicity are valid anymore, or indeed ever were, and whether they should be replaced with more robust information about genetic ancestry will continue. My own view is that attempts to stop the progress of science have been remarkably unsuccessful over time, and the benefits of understanding the impact of human variation outweigh the risks. But I say this with the specter in the back of my mind of someone speaking from this stage in a hundred years time, castigating the scientists of my era for their blindness to the ways in which their scientific findings were used to sustain prejudice and discrimination.
Keep in mind, Tilghman delivered this speech to an audience of Afro-American studies scholars. Some might see in her stated view a note of optimism for "HBD".
How we proceed in this new era, and whether for good or ill, are now up to all of us, scientist and non-scientist alike. In this regard the Center for African American Studies is poised to play a critical role in the ongoing debate we must have about the meaning of race in the post-genome era. As a University that prides itself in being in the nation's service and the service of all nations, we need to be a leading voice in this debate, through the scholarship that we produce, the conversations that we stimulate and the future leaders whom we educate. As a community in which scientists, social scientists and humanists work and study in close proximity to one another, we can ensure that this discussion be as broad as possible. As the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. observed, "Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that." At Princeton we are in the business of generating light.
What I'm getting from this is Tilghman fully grasps that current leftist dogma will be unable to withstand the onslaught of genomic fact and is warning her audience they'll need adopt newer and more effective varieties of sophistry (a number of which she illustrates in her speech).

I'll close with two quotes I find it amusing to juxtapose. I don't think I need to point out the irony. At one point in her speech, Tilghman writes:
What Linnaeus, Gall, Galton and Davenport have in common – and recall that several of them were considered scientific giants in their time – was deep-seated racial prejudice that biased the way in which they framed their questions, designed their studies and analyzed their data. It would be imprudent for us to think that such biases cannot creep into our thinking about race in the post-genome era.
Followed later by (discussing the announcement of the completion of the human genome project):
It was a euphoric moment for all who had participated in the project, but even at that moment of celebration, there was a sense that the genome could potentially open up a proverbial Pandora's Box of issues, particularly surrounding the issue of race.

Genetic origins of a Massachusetts "Indian" tribe

According to a paper that recently went up at the website of the American Journal of Physical Anthropology, "Genetic heritage and native identity of the Seaconke Wampanoag tribe of Massachusetts":
Because of repeated epidemics and conflicts with English colonists, including King Philip's War of 1675-76, and subsequent colonial laws forbidding tribal identification, the Wampanoag population was largely decimated, decreasing in size from as many as 12,000 individuals in the 16th century to less than 400, as recorded in 1677. To investigate the influence of the historical past on its biological ancestry and native cultural identity, we analyzed genetic variation in the Seaconke Wampanoag tribe. Our results indicate that the majority of their mtDNA haplotypes belongs to West Eurasian and African lineages, thus reflecting the extent of their contacts and interactions with people of European and African descent. On the paternal side, Y-chromosome analysis identified a range of Native American, West Eurasian, and African haplogroups in the population, and also surprisingly revealed the presence of a paternal lineage that appears at its highest frequencies in New Guinea and Melanesia.

The racial worldview of F. Scott Fitzgerald

Fitzgerald's mocking of the ideas of Madison Grant and Lothrop Stoddard in The Great Gatsby recently came up a couple times at Alternative Right. Fitzgerald, however, seems to have been more sympathetic to Tom Buchanan's point of view than he let on in public (continue reading):

What "Greek gods" actually looked like

Men's Health reports the following measurements for the Doryphoros at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts:

HEIGHT = 6 feet, 5½ INCHES

About the statue:
This is Doryphoros (Dore-IF-er-us), a statue created by the Greeks in the fifth century bc. He later came to be regarded by the Romans as the Canon of Proportion, or the ideal man. In fact, when it was time for Emperor Augustus to be immortalized in marble, he merely had his sculpted head placed on a copy of this body.
Needless to say, few sedentary men (let alone black men) are walking around with 52-inch muscular chests (or the height-adjusted equivalent). Here are two posts at a sculpture website looking at classical canons of proportion in light of anthropometric data, the upshot being:
The “academic canon” lines up pretty well with the mean plus one standard deviation. The “ideal (Vitruvian) canon” matches up fairly close to the mean plus two standard deviations and the “heroic” nine heads canon matches up with the proportions of the population maximum.

23andMe discount through March 31

Not making an endorsement, but if you were going to order a 23andMe kit, right now you can save $200 on either the ancestry or complete version courtesy of an Oprah / Skip Gates promotion.

Geographic distribution of an allele affecting skin pigmentation

Lucotte et al. A decreasing gradient of 374F allele frequencies in the skin pigmentation gene SLC45A2, from the north of West Europe to North Africa. Biochem Genet. 2010 Feb;48(1-2):26-33.
The 374F isofrequency values in West Europe and North Africa (Fig. 1) decrease regularly with latitude, from the north of West Europe to North Africa. Higher 374F frequency values were observed in Denmark, England, Belgium, the north of France, Germany, Switzerland, and the north of Italy; medium 374F frequency values were observed in the south of France, Portugal, Spain, Corsica, Italy, Sardinia, and Sicily. The lowest 374F frequency values were observed in the south of Spain and North Africa.

More from Henry Cabot Lodge on race and immigration

I've posted excerpts from this speech before. I came across some more excerpts in this article (George W. Stocking, Jr. The Turn-of-the-Century Concept of Race. Modernism/Modernity 1.1 (1994) 4-16.):
From the American Antiquarian Society meetings in Boston to the chambers of the United States Senate is a step out into the wider American society of the 1890s. But where the speaker is Henry Cabot Lodge, the transition is an easy one, and indeed the pattern of assumption is not dissimilar. Speaking in favor of immigration restriction in 1896, Lodge argued that though a Hindoo might "absorb the learning of Oxford" and even sit in Parliament, he could not be made an Englishman, even though they both came from the "great Indo-European family." It had taken "six thousand years and more to create the differences which exist between them," and these could not be effaced by education in a single lifetime. Lodge went on to ask what was the "matter of race which separates the Englishman from the Hindoo and the American from the Indian?"
It is something deeper and more fundamental than anything which concerns the intellect. We all know it instinctively, although it is so impalpable we can scarcely define it, and yet it is so deeply marked that even the physiological differences between the Negro, the Mongol, and the Caucasian are not more persistent or more obvious. When we speak of a race, then,...we mean the moral and intellectual characters, which in their association make the soul of a race, and which represent the product of all its past, the inheritance of all its ancestors, and the motives of all its conduct. The men of each race possess an indestructible stock of ideas, traditions, sentiments, modes of thought, an unconscious inheritance from their ancestors, upon which argument has no effect. What makes a race are their mental and, above all, their moral characteristics, the slow growth and accumulation of centuries of toil and conflict.
The full text of Lodge's speech, "The Restriction of Immigration", is online at Google Books in Speeches and addresses, 1884-1909.

Ethnographic video online

This was emailed to me. I haven't looked at it yet, but some of you might find it useful.
Ethnographic Video Online provides the largest, most comprehensive resource for the study of human culture and behavior – more than 750 hours and 1,000 films at completion. The collection covers every region of the world and features the work of many of the most influential documentary filmmakers of the 20th century, including interviews, previously unreleased raw footage, field notes, study guides, and more. This first release includes 226 videos totaling roughly 152 hours.

Access it now, registration-free, through Friday, March 12th.
username: ethnography
password: sneakpeek

Scandinavia vs. Italy and Poland

Nobel Prizes1 Corruption2 HDI3 Happiness4
Sweden 11.0 9.2 0.963 256.67
Denmark 8.0 9.3 0.955 273.4
Norway 7.4 8.6 0.971 246.67
Italy 1.7 4.3 0.951 230
Poland 0.9 5.0 0.880 196.67

[1] Scientific Nobel Prizes per 10 million population, 1945-2009 (source)
[2] Corruption Perceptions Index, 2009 (source)
[3] Human Development Index, 2007 (source)
[4] Satisfaction with Life Index, 2006 (source)

(Incidentally, Lynn's 102 estimate for the average IQ of Italy is based on two studies, neither of which dealt with southern Italy. A commenter calculates an average Italian IQ of 96.1 using Lynn's more detailed recent estimates and weighting by population.)

AAPA 2010 abstracts

Abstracts of AAPA poster and podium presentations (p 52-252). American Journal of Physical Anthropology. Volume 141 Issue S50 (April 2010) Supplement: Program of the Seventy-Ninth Annual Meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists (link)

Selected abstracts within (continue reading).

Why have white sprinters stagnated?

Even if genetic differences contribute to black dominance in short sprints, the question of why white sprinters have stopped getting better remains:
Today’s few elite White sprinters can run no faster than their predecessors from the 1970s, despite improved equipment, support, and facilities (George, 1994). Proposed racial physiological differences would not adequately explain White sprinting stagnation over a quarter of a century. Proponents of biological determinism might stress that whilst racial athletic differences are small, split seconds can separate champions and also-rans (Entine, 2000). However, the influence of stereotypes could also account for performance differentials, with Whites effectively defeated at the starting-line, by inflated impressions of Black rivals. For White sprinters fear of failure, and over arousal could be triggered by negative stereotypes, whilst Black sprinters may be more relaxed, and confident, due to positive stereotypes. It certainly seems that contemporary sprinting is more important in Black subculture (George, 1994), and few Whites choose to participate, perhaps because of perceptions of inferiority. Coaches may be significant agents in shaping attitudes and channelling Black or White athletes into or away from sprinting due to stereotypical assumptions.
[David Turner and Ian Jones. False Start? UK Sprint Coaches and Black/White Stereotypes.]
Here is the abstract of the paper cited above:
Over the past 30 years almost all world-class US sprinters have been black. There were also many fast black sprinters in the USA before the 1960s, but in addition there were a considerable number of world-class white sprinters. In fact, during the 1940s and 1950s the fastest men were white. This was not the case during the 1930s, when the best male sprinters were black. This essay discusses the phenomenon and attempts to give reasons for it. Sociological explanations seem considerably more plausible than physical characteristics based on perceived racial differences.
[George, J. (1994) The virtual disappearance of the white male sprinter in the United States: A speculative essay. Sociology of Sport Journal, 11, 1, 70-78.]
Black dominance in sprinting coincides with the advent of widespread anabolic steroid use. Perhaps this is entirely coincidental. Regardless, when boosters of black athleticism note that no white has run 100 meters in less than 10 seconds, one can note that neither did any black in the pre-steroid era or without Western coaching.