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Aspies, Neanderthals, and Intelligence

May 9, 2008

One should not reify the construct of IQ. Intelligence and aptitude tests – whether Stanford-Binet, SAT, ACT, or others – are nothing more than operational definitions of intelligence. In other words, intelligence is not a thing. It is a presumed set of abilities which are measured by various indicants (scales and indices).

The overriding problem, which is now almost universally acknowledged by social scientists, is that operationalizations of intelligence cannot be separated from culture. In other words, no matter how one writes the questions, it is impossible to test completely for intelligence while controlling on socialization. They are part and parcel of one another.

The problem, as I see it, is with the claim that aspies are largely a subspecies of Caucasoids. No matter whether the intellectual variance in the races is principally attributed to aspies, a case is still being made for Caucasoids having a higher culturally-neutral average IQ score.

It is questionable, IMO, to argue that Caucasoids have a higher average IQ than Negroids without also pointing out that cultural bias has been clearly shown in the Stanford-Binet and similar measures (as by administering an IQ test written in Ebonics to a sample of Blacks and Whites).

Even worse, some will, in many countries, be placed into a lower educational track. In the U.S., the lower tracks are disproportionately populated by African Americans and Latino Americans. That is why I have difficulties with claims that Negroids have lower average IQs than Caucasoids (no matter how one parses it). Similarly, many nonverbal autistics, who have subsequently continued on as university students, will present on those tests as intellectually disabled (mentally retarded). The problem is that the IQ testing process is not isomorphic with all subpopulations.

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