The Mismeasure of Man

Front Cover
W. W. Norton & Company, 1996 - Psychology - 444 pages
27 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."

 

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
12
4 stars
8
3 stars
3
2 stars
0
1 star
4

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - dcunning11235 - LibraryThing

This book is frustratingly hard to rate. On the one hand it disturbingly documents the history of "scientific" racism/prejudice re: temperament/intelligence/etc. On the other hand it is frustratingly ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - DarthDeverell - LibraryThing

In The Mismeasure of Man, Stephen Jay Gould examines the manner in which scientists described intelligence as “unitary, linearly rankable, [and] innate” in order to argue for social programs or ... Read full review

All 5 reviews »

Contents

I
19
III
26
IV
36
V
51
VI
62
VII
63
VIII
71
IX
74
XXI
222
XXII
264
XXIII
269
XXIV
286
XXV
303
XXVI
326
XXVII
347
XXVIII
350

X
82
XI
101
XII
105
XIII
114
XIV
140
XV
142
XVI
151
XVII
173
XVIII
176
XIX
188
XX
204
XXIX
351
XXX
352
XXXI
354
XXXII
365
XXXIII
367
XXXIV
379
XXXV
391
XXXVI
401
XXXVII
413
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (1996)

Stephen Jay Gould (1941-2002) was the Alexander Agassiz Professor of Zoology and Professor of Geology at Harvard University. He published over twenty books, received the National Book and National Book Critics Circle Awards, and a MacArthur Fellowship.

Bibliographic information