The Mismeasure of Man

Front Cover
W. W. Norton & Company, 1996 - Fiction - 444 pages
47 Reviews
When published in 1981, The Mismeasure of Man was immediately hailed as a masterwork, the ringing answer to those who would classify people, rank them according to their supposed genetic gifts and limits.

And yet the idea of innate limits of biology as destiny dies hard, as witness the attention devoted to The Bell Curve, whose arguments are here so effectively anticipated and thoroughly undermined by Stephen Jay Gould. In this edition Dr. Gould has written a substantial new introduction telling how and why he wrote the book and tracing the subsequent history of the controversy on innateness right through The Bell Curve. Further, he has added five essays on questions of The Bell Curve in particular and on race, racism, and biological determinism in general. These additions strengthen the book's claim to be, as Leo J. Kamin of Princeton University has said, "a major contribution toward deflating pseudo-biological 'explanations' of our present social woes.""

  

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Review: The Mismeasure of Man (Revised & Expanded)

User Review  - Brian - Goodreads

In this, Gould's riposte to what has essentially become a particular strain of argumentation for conservative socioeconomic policies, he presents a history, analysis, and refutation of a theoretical ... Read full review

Review: The Mismeasure of Man

User Review  - Yasha Zhurinsky - Goodreads

This is a very interesting book. It is describing multiple attempts to measure "worth" of people by assigning a single number to every individual - be it brain volume, some parameters of the scull or ... Read full review

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Contents

Acknowledgments
15
Reasons history and revision of The Mismeasure of Man
36
Introduction
51
monogenism
71
PaulBroca and the Heyday
105
Paul Broca and his school
114
Postscript
140
criminal anthropology
151
Factor Analysis
264
Charles Spearman and general intelligence
286
Cyril Burt and the hereditarian synthesis
303
A Positive Conclusion 557
351
Epilogue
365
Ghosts of Bell Curves past
379
Three Centuries Perspectives on Race
391
Racial geometry
401

Epilogue
173
An American
176
H H Goddard and the menace of the feebleminded
188
Terman and the mass marketing of innate IQ
204
IQ comes
222
The moral state of Tahitiand of Darwin
413
Bibliography
425
Index
433
Copyright

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About the author (1996)

Born in New York City in 1941, Stephen Jay Gould received his B.A. from Antioch College in New York in 1963. He received a Ph.D. in paleontology from Columbia University in 1967 and has been a professor at Harvard University since then. He is also curator of invertebrate paleontology at Harvard's Museum of Comparative Zoology. His research has been mainly in the evolution and speciation of land snails. Gould is a leading proponent of the theory of punctuated equilibrium. This theory holds that few evolutionary changes occur among organisms over long periods of time, and then a brief period of rapid changes occurs before another long, stable period of equilibrium sets in. An outspoken advocate of the scientific outlook, Gould has been a vigorous defender of evolution against its creation-science opponents in popular magazines focusing on science. He writes a column for Natural History and has produced a remarkable series of books that display the excitement of science for the layperson.

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