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No-name
02-07-05, 22:56
This is in response to another thread. I was wondering what everyone thought and why.

jamosaka
03-07-05, 02:05
I would say that there are different races, but they're not always distinct.

Maciamo
03-07-05, 04:52
All humans are different, but there are genetical characteristics (e.g. hair/eyes colour, size, facial trait, etc.) that enable us to categorise them into groups. It is not as simple as saying there are 3 main races (Caucasoid, Negroid, Mongoloid). Looking at the people of India, Central Asia and the Middle East, we clearly see that it is more complex. But even within (what's looks like) a clear-cut group, there are many 'subcategories'. For example, among Caucasoids (=Europeans), we can notice very clearly the difference between the North Germanic type (tall, blond, blue eyes, smaller nose, squarer face...) or Celtic type (blue eyes, dark or red hair, rounder face), and Italic type (dark hair and eyes, taller and longer nose, deep features), Hispanic type (less pronounced features than Italic), Greek type (straight nose, sometimes blue eyes), etc.

Even within one of these groups, we could divide further. E.g. The Frankic Germanic type is not the same as Scandinavian Germanic or Anglo-Saxon Germanic.

Things get more complicated once we look at mixed race regions, like the South of Germany (Celtic, Germanic and Latin, possibly with a bit of Slavic).

I this regard I am quite surprised at the ethnic homogenity of North East Asia (China, Korea, Japan). Some Japanese clearly have Ainu features, but otherwise they are almost impossible to tell appart (much more difficult than to tell two Germanic group apart).

In SE Asia, Indonesian and Malaysian are very easily distinguishable from Thai or Burmese, who are also easily disntinguishable from the Khmer (Cambodians). But there are so many ethnic tribes in Northern Thailand, Laos or Vietnam that it complicated things quite a bit.

In Africa, there is no way to confuse a Bantu (Central and South Africa; slightest fairer skin, round face, flat nose) from an Ethiopian (face/skull closer to Caucasoid, smaller nose, squarer face and much darker skin than Bantu).

I would put the Arabs in a separate division from Caucasoid, Negroid or Mongoloid. Dravidian people (originally from Southern India) are also a separate division. But today's Indians are mainly a mix of Caucasoid Aryans and Dravidians, which explains how two Indians can look completely different (some with skin as fair as a Mediterranean, others as dark as an Ethiopian + different features).

So is there races or subdivisions within humans ? Yes. Can we scientifically classify them, as we would classify different species of plants and animals (e.g. the hundreds of races of dog or horses) ? Yes. Can we crossbreed them and get new races ? Yes. There is no reason humans should be different from other life beings.

Kinsao
19-07-05, 12:37
It is very interesting - and very complicated! Thinking about plant and animal world, and cross-breeding in this respect, it seems like Maciamo says, that they can be scientifically classified. But, it can be so difficult if a person's exact 'origins' aren't known, because is there a way to tell 'race' (as a scientific category) from genetics? If not, then it's maybe not exactly a 'scientific category'. For many people I think their exact race in a scientific sense gets just too complex and subtle, with too many unknowns. Of course, it's still possible to know generally their race.

Anyway, it doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of things. We are all human. :yeahh:

Mycernius
19-07-05, 13:49
I think race being used as a valid scientific distinction is bordering on the ideas that various people have used in the past to say that white people are superior to black people, and visa versa. This articles (http://www.livescience.com/forcesofnature/050308_super_volcano.html) about super volcanoes and the Toba euruption really puts a little kink in their argument about the differences between races, especially this quote:

Stanley Ambrose, an anthropologist at the University of Illinois, suggested in 1998 that Rampino's work might explain a curious bottleneck in human evolution: The blueprints of life for all humans -- DNA -- are remarkably similar given that our species branched off from the rest of the primate family tree a few million years ago.

Ambrose has said early humans were perhaps pushed to the edge of extinction after the Toba eruption -- around the same time folks got serious about art and tool making. Perhaps only a few thousand survived. Humans today would all be descended from these few, and in terms of the genetic code, not a whole lot would change in 74,000 years.
It seems that with only a few thousand surviving the eurption that we are more closly related to each other than was previously thought. Our differences are little more than skin deep. If this eruption never had occured, then maybe their would be a real differences between the various races of mankind rather than the ones we like to make up using dodgy science.

bossel
19-07-05, 14:36
It seems that with only a few thousand surviving the eurption that we are more closly related to each other than was previously thought. Our differences are little more than skin deep. If this eruption never had occured, then maybe their would be a real differences between the various races of mankind rather than the ones we like to make up using dodgy science.
Actually, this is no news. IIRC, the separation of caucasoid & mongoloid race is put to around 40,000 years ago, much later than this volcanic eruption.

There may have been a much more severe bottle neck, some 60,000 years ago. According to one study we are all descended from one human male who lived around that time. To establish this needs a lot more work to be done, though. We still have varying theories regarding human evolution, the multiregional hypothesis is still not entirely discarded (got even a new spin recently).

Here you can find a summary of the Multiregional Evolution hypothesis (http://www.jqjacobs.net/anthro/paleo/multiregional.html), though the newest research is not included.
Quote:
"The authors point out that if replacement occured we would expect to find archaeological traces, yet we can find none in Asia.. The hand ax was common in Africa, yet the technologies of eastern Asia did not include handaxes before or after the African dispersal period. Artifacts found in the earliest assemblages continue to appear into the very late Pleistocene.

The hominid fossils from Australasia are argued to show a continuous anatomic sequence, with the earliest Australians displaying features seen in Indonesia 100,000 years ago. Similar evidence is seen in northern Asia. One million years old Chinese fossils differ from Javan fossils in ways that parallel the differences between north Asians and Australians today. Morphological continuity is also evidenced by prominently shoveled maxdlary incisors occurring in high frequency in living east Asians and in all the earlier Asian fossils."

On the same website is also a representation of the bottleneck hypothesis.
Quote:
"Ambrose concludes that bottlenecks occurred among genetically isolated human populations because of a six-year long volcanic winter and subsequent hyper-cold millennium after the cataclysmic super-eruption of Toba. This volcanic winter played a role in recent human differentiation. The resultant combination of founder effects and genetic drift may account for low human genetic diversity as well as population differences associated with so-called races. The bottleneck hypothesis offers an explanation for why human exhibit so little genetic variation, yet superficially appear diverse. It also affords an explanation for the apparent recent coalescence of mtDNA and African origins."

Nothing is settled yet.

No-name
19-07-05, 19:01
Quote:
"...The bottleneck hypothesis offers an explanation for why human exhibit so little genetic variation, yet superficially appear diverse. It also affords an explanation for the apparent recent coalescence of mtDNA and African origins."

Nothing is settled yet.

Now here I agree with you. But I would latch on to the words "little genetic variation" and "yet superficially appear diverse." and run with them. How important can Race be as a "scientific" concept if it is only based on superficial differences? (Granted that as a layman, I may be totally incorrect...it just seems to prove my point.)

Nothing is settled yet- on this point I agree.

Pararousia
19-07-05, 19:47
It seems that with only a few thousand surviving the eurption that we are more closly related to each other than was previously thought. Our differences are little more than skin deep. If this eruption never had occured, then maybe their would be a real differences between the various races of mankind rather than the ones we like to make up using dodgy science.

Or maybe 10,000 years ago, Noah and his family continued the human race after a world wide castrotophe. Just as possible as the above. ;oD

Mycernius
19-07-05, 20:35
Or maybe 10,000 years ago, Noah and his family continued the human race after a world wide castrotophe. Just as possible as the above. ;oD
You are tempting me, but I'd just say I will go along the lines of scientific research rather than myth. I'd prefer that this didn't become a science verses religion thread.

bossel
19-07-05, 23:13
How important can Race be as a "scientific" concept if it is only based on superficial differences?
Sorry, but I still don't see which importance should be there? Importance is always relative.


Nothing is settled yet- on this point I agree.
I was referring to the origin of homo sapiens & its races, not the existence of races. They are a simple fact of life, only the details are open to definition.



Or maybe 10,000 years ago, Noah and his family continued the human race after a world wide castrotophe. Just as possible as the above. ;oD
Possible, yeah, but highly improbable. What Mycernius described has a much greater probability.

No-name
20-07-05, 00:11
Sorry, but I still don't see which importance should be there? Importance is always relative.


I was referring to the origin of homo sapiens & its races, not the existence of races. They are a simple fact of life, only the details are open to definition.

You keep tripping over significance, meaning and now importance. What kind of scientific concept is race if it is insignificant, meaningless and unimportant? Are there many scientific concepts that lack significance, meaning and importance? (I guess I could concede the entire argument here if Race is a just an irrelevant scientific concept that has no meaning, importance, or significance.)

As far as race being a simple fact, I think we have demonstrated that it is far from simple. When people with bigger brains then mine and yours are arguing over its very existence and not just details and definition, I think we can say it is far from a fact.

People divide themselves into Races for all kinds of reasons that are entirely unscientific. Different people draw different lines, and almost no one I know uses seventeenth century European terms "caucasoid, negroid, and mongoloid" (Except possibly 17th century europeans.) If we are going to use race as some deliminator, why not use a non-European such as the Chinese, Japanese, Dinka, Somoan or Navajo system? Is there some reason why the antiquated European system is superior to any of the other 17th century systems? Maybe you europeans just have sharper eyes?

bossel
20-07-05, 06:55
You keep tripping over significance, meaning and now importance.
Yep, because you seem to expect some social/philosophical meaning, but you never clearly state what you expect, although I repeatedly asked.


What kind of scientific concept is race if it is insignificant, meaningless and unimportant? Are there many scientific concepts that lack significance, meaning and importance?
A lot. For significance, meaning & importance are always relative. Race has a certain significance to understand & to categorise homo sapiens, it has absolutely no significance for my dinner.


When people with bigger brains then mine and yours are arguing over its very existence and not just details and definition, I think we can say it is far from a fact.
Nope. I'm not an elitist. That someone belonging to some intellectual elite (what a crappy concept, pretty much like racism) doesn't accept a certain terminology does not mean that I have to subscribe to that very same opinion. Furthermore, those working in the field (eg. biologists) generally do not have a problem with the concept of race, but with the related terminology (due to political pressure from the PC faction).


People divide themselves into Races for all kinds of reasons that are entirely unscientific.
So what?


Different people draw different lines, and almost no one I know uses seventeenth century European terms "caucasoid, negroid, and mongoloid"
That doesn't mean much. You obviously have no contact to biologists. & AFAIK in the US the crappy PC faction is busy to eradicate even these -oid terms.


(Except possibly 17th century europeans.)
You know 17th century Europeans personally?
Anyway, at least try to educate yourself of the subject you're talking about. Negroid is 1st attested 1859, mongoloid & caucasoid are from around the same time (1st they used mongolian [1868] & caucasian [1795])


If we are going to use race as some deliminator, why not use a non-European such as the Chinese, Japanese, Dinka, Somoan or Navajo system?
Because I am European. Chinese et al. may very well use their own terminology. I can't really see your point here.


Is there some reason why the antiquated European system is superior to any of the other 17th century systems?
Why antiquated? Genetics is a rather recent development & can very well be applied to the systematics.
Which other 17th century systems?


Maybe you europeans just have sharper eyes?
Don't know. At least our PC faction is not (yet) quite as fascistic in its attempts to dictate science what it should do.

No-name
20-07-05, 09:06
LOL. So if we are arguing a relatively insignificant, unimportant, and meaningless concept who's only value is to randomly catagorize homo sapiens, than I am going to bed. The science community as I understand it always argues against the "la la" relativism that goes against the systematic reason, dialectics and materialism that is at the core of all science. There is a consistent method to science, a validity, reliability and ability to reproduce results. Gravity is a significant, important concept with a definite meaning. Relativity- very important. The atomic theory, laws of thermodynamics, evolution, the carbon cycle and global warming are all significant, important and have a distict meaning. Scientists are not spending a whole lot of time debating the existence of these concepts or trying to redifine terminology in order to satisfy imaginary factions of politeness police. And I have not asked for any social/philosophical meaning- just for a basic pedestrian run of the mill daily use type meaning. When have I ever cared about philosophy?

Who is this PC faction and how do they exert pressure? Things must be awefully different in Germany if people feel bullied especially in their own fields by some clandestine thought police. Who cares if anything or anyone is politically correct? People make carreers out of being politically incorrect in my country. Look at Rush Limbaugh, Howard Stern and all the other talk jockies. If they went PC they'd be off the air. Books like the Bell Curve sell millions of copies on the basis that they offend many.

Asside from Biology teachers, and my sister in law and niece, I don't know any biologists. I showed my sister in law (who has a much bigger brain than mine and is far more qualified to give answers in this field) the other thread and she laughed. Never the less however, she agree with me (but indicated that I really didn't understand what I was talking about when it came to details.) It was her suggestion that race is simply inaccurate and not specific enough to be useful. (Don't ask me why, I just left it like that.) I feel that since she has spent a great deal more time in the study of such things, that her opinion on this narrow topic is significantly more valid. I hope that's not being elitist, but I tend to go to doctors for medical opinions, mechanics for assistance with my car, and electricians for the wiring in my house. In matters relating to biology, I will consider deferring to the scientists. (with the exceptions previously stated.)

Lastly science isn't relative to geographical location. A meter is a meter. An atom an atom. If it can be measured, quantified, described and classified in Europe, it shouldn't change in Asia. The atomic theory is the same in Samoa as it is in Brazil. My point that you missed is rather simple: the use of a pre-scientific taxonomy to classify homo sapiens that is not universally agreed upon by the majority of people in the field lacks meaning. It is arbitrary. Persians are not Arabs and don't consider themselves either mongoloid or caucasoid. The three race european system is no more valid than the jewish system of dividing all of humanity into Jews and Gentiles or the Japanese system of dividing humanity into Gaijin and Nihonjin.

For a term to have meaning it must have a shared denotation (and connotation) for both the sender and reciever. Race seems to be lacking in this parameter. 17th century and antiquated refer to the basic development of race as a theory that I got from Wikipedia. That I may have been inaccurate as to the exact dating of the exact terminology does not negate the point that these were developed before the science of genetics, DNA, or genomics existed, and were developed based solely upon insignificant superficial differences such as facial structure and skin color. I'm fairly certain that every isolated population with sufficient language found a good way of classifying outsiders like this, but is that science? You pick the eurpean terminology because you are european? Is that science? It doesn't seem scientific to sub divide a species in a random way based upon a social custom dating back two or three hundred years. Neither does it seem like a scientific way of doing this if it lacks any kind of significance- if it is merely a sorting by superficial appearance. (see the quote above-- from post #6) Science and race seem to diverge here- if few can agree on the terminology or the parameters of a taxonomy than how can it be reliable, reproducable and valid? Sounds like a social construct, not like science.

Sorry for the long rambling post. It is past my bed time. (And I am way out of my circle of expertise- can't someone with a better handle on this stuff bail me out?)

Kinsao
20-07-05, 14:19
***DISCLAIMER!!! I am not knowledgeable about race or science!!!***

Personally I feel that race as classification is actually unimportant. I also think it is not 'scientific'; it is already pointed out that science concentrates on issues that have relevance to the whole 'human race' regardless of 'race'.

I also think (as if anyone is interested in my opinion, but I carry on rambling away anyhow, ho hum... lol) that there are scientific areas in which it can *seem* that race is important. (I am thinking Biology here.) For instance, where there are genetic factors involved. And, there are often important links between physical/geographical location, cultural practice, and human biology/physiology. However, these make interesting areas of study in their own right under the umbrella of 'biology' and 'bio-chemistry', but I don't think they are at all the same thing as 'race'. They are really scientific issues which involve development of the human body, geography, environment, and 'nature/nurture' debate also. 'Race' is to my way of thinking most definitely not a scientific classification properly. But, it can be a useful reference for people who need/want to discuss/work on related issues but don't have the (incredibly complex) scientific know-how to delve more deeply. Really, they are using it as kind of 'easy reference'.

Finally, about PC-ness... In comedy, of course, there is a lot of un-PC-ness and that's really usually tolerated in England (I am just speaking now from where I live) except for sometimes when it treads too near the line. But I can definitely say (and it sounds as if it might be similar in Germay?) there is almost 'thought police'! Of course, I'm not talking about general conversation of 'man/woman on the street', where people speak as they wish. But for example, I work for an organisation, and we have to be so careful about using correct terminology. People get offended by the term 'handicapped' (should use 'disabled' instead!!) and - well, loads of other terms, too. And in certain circles (especially high up places in important organisations, hehe), some terms like 'mongoloid', 'negroid' would make people throw up their hands in horror! Myself, I feel this is not real 'political correctness' and only just a thin veneer... somehow it seems they are missing completely the real issues... :worried:

It seems a shame that people even get at all hung up about 'race'. In an ideal world it shouldn't be an issue at all.

mad pierrot
20-07-05, 16:47
Nope.

Distinctions are arbitrary (as far as I'm concerned) in this regard. We're all the same species and that's enough for me.

No-name
20-07-05, 23:24
From Jacobs' Multiregional Evolution Essay: (http://www.jqjacobs.net/anthro/paleo/multiregional.html)
Finally, it is affirmatively argued that the close genetic similarities of the entire human race reflect linkages between people, an ancient history of population connections and mate exchanges, or, in other words, gene exchange.

bossel
21-07-05, 08:53
The science community as I understand it always argues against the "la la" relativism that goes against the systematic reason, dialectics and materialism that is at the core of all science.
Could you rephrase that in a way I can understand? I never heard of "la la" relativism.


There is a consistent method to science, a validity, reliability and ability to reproduce results.
Then now you agree with the concept of race? There is valid, reliable DNA research which can be used to distinguish members of differing races with reproducable results.


Gravity is a significant, important concept with a definite meaning.
Since we don't really know why gravity exists or what it exactly is, what is the definite meaning? The scientifical concept of gravity also has no importance for my dinner. I'd recognise that my slice of bread falls to the ground without any scientific background.


Relativity- very important.
Yes, I see that. The faster I eat, the older I get. Or did I get that wrong? :ramen:


The atomic theory, laws of thermodynamics, evolution, the carbon cycle and global warming are all significant, important and have a distict meaning.
Atomic theory: -yes, obviously without this theory I wouldn't be able to put butter on my bread (BTW, since you talked about antiquated concepts, this one is quite old)
Thermodynamics: -very important to know that no energy is lost while I'm chewing
Evolution: -yo, absolutely necessary to know that the pork I eat comes from a pig that evolved from another form of pig that evolved from some other animal, which again evolved... Couldn't live without that.
Carbon cycle: -also good to know that the salad I have cannot reduce the atmosphere's carbon dioxide anymore
Global warming: -the most important of them all, yeah, how could I eat anything if I didn't know that whenever I eat beans I will enhance global warming through the methane I produce while digesting them.

BTW, thermodynamics is nice example how you misunderstand science. Science often works with models, IE idealised versions of reality. For thermodynamics this means that scientists often deal with concepts that don't exist as such in reality, eg. isolated systems. Doesn't that mean according to your definition that it isn't scientific? Or at least less scientific than race, since there are actually people who show 100% markers of certain races, while there isn't a 100% isolated system?

Sorry, but you couldn't convince me.



And I have not asked for any social/philosophical meaning- just for a basic pedestrian run of the mill daily use type meaning. When have I ever cared about philosophy?
You weren't very clear before. You kept on talking about some alleged meaning that should be there, even after (IIRC) I already stated that the meaning is relative. It's relevant for certain areas of biological/medical/etc. research, but else?


Who is this PC faction and how do they exert pressure?
I'm not in the US, but what I read about this is that your funding may be cancelled if you don't publish according to certain political standards.


Who cares if anything or anyone is politically correct?
Publishers obviously do. Certain faculties probably do, too.


Look at Rush Limbaugh, Howard Stern and all the other talk jockies. If they went PC they'd be off the air.
Which science are they involved in?


Books like the Bell Curve sell millions of copies on the basis that they offend many.
Nice example, esp. since the authors had great trouble because of this. Pictured as racists by the PC faction, IIRC, they even got bomb threats. How politically correct!
Maybe this particular book sold millions, but less populistic (IIRC, this one was supported by some right-wing institution) scientific publications are often refused by major publishers because of PC. It's a hard life if you have to publish in peer-reviewed magazines in order to get grants/funding, but your articles are refused for reasons of PC.


An atom an atom.
Is it? There are some 112 different atoms. Didn't you say something about when the number of differentiation is 60 it becomes meaningless? What's more, there is even differentiation in one element, the atom may have varying numbers of neutrons.


the use of a pre-scientific taxonomy to classify homo sapiens that is not universally agreed upon by the majority of people in the field lacks meaning.
"universally agreed upon by the majority" sounds interesting. Which probably makes UG a non-scientific concept as well.
Talking of pre-scientific taxonomy: When did science start?
Why should certain terms be deleted from language only because some idiots misused them? Wouldn't we have to delete some 90% (or more) if we did this consequently?


Persians [...] don't consider themselves either mongoloid or caucasoid.
Even if that were true, so what? How many Persians are biologists?
But, anyway, could you please enlighten me as to what Persians do consider themselves (with source, if possible)?


For a term to have meaning it must have a shared denotation (and connotation) for both the sender and reciever. Race seems to be lacking in this parameter.
For an English major, this is a quite poor argumentation. How many scientific terms are widely understood in the general population? Are all those not understood by an arbitrarily asked housewife invalid?


I'm fairly certain that every isolated population with sufficient language found a good way of classifying outsiders like this, but is that science?
Outsiders? Then the Europeans who did the classification were neither caucasoid, negroid, mongoloid or altschicht? Were they ETs?


You pick the eurpean terminology because you are european? Is that science?
Nope, it's language. I'm German talking English to you, hence I use the English & where the English is unknown German terminology. I could use the Chinese one, but I doubt you would understand that.


if it is merely a sorting by superficial appearance.
It is quite obvious that you don't want to understand. Appearance is only a minor marker of race.


if few can agree on the terminology
Why should eg. Chinese adopt English terminology? They sometimes do, but to force them is quite imperialist.

More of my notorious comparisons drawn from linguistics: The terms language & dialect are fallen in disregard in parts of the linguistic community & replaced by Ausbausprache/Abstandsprache/Dachsprache. Now does that mean that language & dialect don't exist? That they aren't scientific concepts? Since dialect (1577) & language (1290) date from pre-scientific times, aren't they acc. to you invalid, anyway?

Tsuyoiko
21-07-05, 12:40
Richard Lewontin is the scientist most famous (IMHO) for his claim that race is invalid as a scientific taxonomy. He observed that 85 percent of human variation occurs within populations, and not between populations, so that 'race' is not an appropriate or useful way to describe variation between human beings. (Richard Lewontin, The Apportionment of Human Diversity, 1972) I first read about this in an article by Stephen Jay Gould, it may have been The Mismeasure of Man, 1981, but I am not sure.

Lewontin's views were questioned in the article Lewontin's Fallacy by A.W.F. Edwards, 2003, which was latched onto by Richard Dawkins. In The Ancestor's Tale, 2004, Dawkins argues that races do exist, but that the boundaries between them are blurred.

I found Lewontin's argument convincing when I read it, but as I have not looked at the counter-arguments in any detail I can't really comment.

Kinsao
21-07-05, 13:12
Genetic distinctions between people are of course scientific, not to mention important (and interesting too!). However, I don't think these are the same thing as 'race' as the term is generally used (even though they are linked - but that's another point and too technical for me!). Of course, I can't comment on what goes through people's minds when they use the term 'race'. But it does seem that it is often used with reference to physical characteristics which are apparent to 'naked-eye' observation. This is not scientific. It does, however, provide an abundant source for much discussion........... !

I agree with Mad Pierrot.

No-name
21-07-05, 20:15
Tsuioko,
Thanks for the input, especially the Lewontin reference. I knew I had seen some stat like that somewhere.

Bossel,
I feel compelled to reply to you, even though I think we both have little left to bring to this discussion. Statement like "Its quite obvious that you don't want to understand." are insulting, condescending and uncalled for. (Especially because it was in response to terms I quoted from YOUR previous post!) I have never put myself forth as an expert in this area, I am constantly asking for clarification and reading the articles that are parsed in this thread. If nothing else I have tried to understand with increasing difficulty your point of view. I am offended by your tone.

You also claim not to be an elitist, but the two times I brought up the fact that aboriginal Amazons and Persians would have a different taxonomy, you asked "How many of them are biologists." I am not a biologist either, and by your snide statement I am entirely unqualified to discuss the taxonomy of a subspecies. (and you would be right, actually.) I feel I have always state myself plainly and have never taken such a tone with you. The tone of these statements to me seem not only elitist, but ethnocentric and arrogant. I am hoping that the implication was unintentional or perhaps that my inference is in error.

As for words having the same meaning for the sender and reciever, I'm quite surprised as a linguistics major you didn't recognize one of the basics of communications. In the US, the concept is quite elementary. :/ And Yes, if a scientist intends to communicate with a houswife, he must use terms she understands. For communication to occur, the sender and reciever must share a common language. The sender should be aware of what terms connote (and possibly denote) in the INTENDED reciever. (So if a scientists were writing to other scientists, he would choose differert terms.)

I pulled the terms "superficial appearence" from an article YOU cited: Multiregional Evolution hypothesis, in the last sentence of the last paragraph, so if you want to ridicule anyone it should be the expert you cited and not me. You also seem to have missed the entire point that we are talking about the validity, reliability and existentence of a concept, and so when I listed scientific concepts it was to illustrate the point that all of the concepts are significant, specific and important. Although we may re-translate these concepts into different languages, the core of the concept does not change.

You are quite right to note that I was sloppy about the origins of science. I'm thinking Age of Reason, Enlightenment...but actually refering to something more modern. Let me rephrase to clarify: the ethnocentric European concept of Race was well developed to the point of dogmatic and inhumane application well before the advent and development of modern sciences such as microbiology, biochemistry, and genomics. The "concept" of race, along with the old world terminology is saddled with so much negative connotation that intereferes with discussion that many or most scientists and scientific journals avoid its usage in favor of more accurate terminology that is devoid of such baggage. Race in these terms has as much validity as spontaneous generation. (I doubt that the terms or concepts of language and dialect carry such baggage.) Although its connotation in the discussion of human variation may find some valid basis, the denotation attached to its historical and popular usage render its continued application in the current field of biology not just politically incorrect, but an anachronism.

The "la la" relativism statement- again I applologize for being vague. When you said everything is relative, it seemed like a cop out- that anything can mean anything to anyone at any given time...(la, la, la...) While this is true in some kind of philosophical sence, it seems to me to exhibit the kind of lack of reasoning that the basic scientific method argues against. Materialism, that a thing can be known, measured, that a concept can be predictive, reliable and valid...the solid concrete knowable universe- this to me is inherent in the methods of science. As a non scientist, I am perhaps the least qualified, most "la-la" person you can find to make this argument. Someone with better Cartesian logic and a stronger scientific background would be better.

You may feel the need to reply to this post by breaking it down into little blue boxes and following each with a one line zinger. I think many of your previous posts have already address much of what I have said here. It may seem to add strength to your argument, but I think both of us (especially me- I'm working on it) could be more brief.

bossel
23-07-05, 09:28
if it is merely a sorting by superficial appearance.Statement like "Its quite obvious that you don't want to understand." are insulting, condescending and uncalled for. (Especially because it was in response to terms I quoted from YOUR previous post!)
Haven't seen any quotation marks. Anyway, not my words. I never said that race can be sorted by superficial appearance.
What's more, that wasn't the 1st time that you brought up folk-taxonomy in order to discredit the scientific approach.


I have never put myself forth as an expert in this area, I am constantly asking for clarification and reading the articles that are parsed in this thread. If nothing else I have tried to understand with increasing difficulty your point of view. I am offended by your tone.
Well, sorry, but I'm a little annoyed by the fact that I have to constantly restate/reject the same stuff in different wording.


You also claim not to be an elitist, but the two times I brought up the fact that aboriginal Amazons and Persians would have a different taxonomy, you asked "How many of them are biologists."
Touché! Although your quote is not correct. I stated, "How many Persians are biologists?" I should have said, "How many Persians have enough knowledge in biology?"

You didn't say that A & P have a different taxonomy, you said that Persians wouldn't consider themselves caucasoid. But you didn't answer my question as to what they do consider themselves to be.


I am not a biologist either, and by your snide statement I am entirely unqualified to discuss the taxonomy of a subspecies. (and you would be right, actually.)
Wrong. There is no qualification necessary to discuss anything, but I doubt that 90+ % of Persians would have the necessary knowledge base to have an informed opinion. & you don't need to have a degree to be knowledgable, you don't even need one to be a scientist, IMO.


The tone of these statements to me seem not only elitist, but ethnocentric and arrogant.
Hmm, arrogant maybe, but ethnocentric? I'm pretty sure I'm egocentric.


As for words having the same meaning for the sender and reciever, I'm quite surprised as a linguistics major you didn't recognize one of the basics of communications.
Where did I say so?


And Yes, if a scientist intends to communicate with a houswife, he must use terms she understands. For communication to occur, the sender and reciever must share a common language. The sender should be aware of what terms connote (and possibly denote) in the INTENDED reciever. (So if a scientists were writing to other scientists, he would choose differert terms.)
How well argued, only, this not really what your original argument was about:
"For a term to have meaning it must have a shared denotation (and connotation) for both the sender and reciever. Race seems to be lacking in this parameter."
So, your above definition applied, race has meaning when 2 scientists (or perhaps even more restricted: biologists) talk to each other, but loses meaning when a scientist talks to a housewife? (Or do you mean it doesn't have any meaning at all because scientific & folk denotation/connotation don't match?)

Then Quantum Theory (or higher mathematics, or...) is meaningless because the common housewife (or houseman, if that word exists in English) most probably wouldn't understand a scientist talking about it?


I pulled the terms "superficial appearence" from an article YOU cited. Multiregional Evolution hypothesis, in the last sentence of the last paragraph, so if you want to ridicule anyone it should be the expert you cited and not me.
Very funny. Just because I quoted it, doesn't mean that I agree with it. The whole Multiregional Evolution hypothesis is rather improbable.


You also seem to have missed the entire point that we are talking about the validity, reliability and existentence of a concept, and so when I listed scientific concepts it was to illustrate the point that all of the concepts are significant, specific and important.
Nope, maybe you missed the point that you reacted to "For significance, meaning & importance are always relative." & in my response I showed that significance, meaning & importance of all those concepts is relative.


Although we may re-translate these concepts into different languages, the core of the concept does not change.
Neither does the concept of race. The terminology changes, the concept pretty much stays the same.


The "concept" of race, along with the old world terminology is saddled with so much negative connotation that intereferes with discussion that many or most scientists and scientific journals avoid its usage in favor of more accurate terminology that is devoid of such baggage.
Negative connotation? & you change anything by simply denying the underlying differences? Very PC!
More accurate? Since the denotation stays the same, how can it be more accurate?


(I doubt that the terms or concepts of language and dialect carry such baggage.)
Obviously they have, or else there wouldn't be some people in the PC faction trying to replace it with Ausbausprache/Abstandsprache/Dachsprache.


Although its connotation in the discussion of human variation may find some valid basis, the denotation attached to its historical and popular usage render its continued application in the current field of biology not just politically incorrect, but an anachronism.
It seems, many or most biologists disagree.


The "la la" relativism statement- again I applologize for being vague. When you said everything is relative, it seemed like a cop out- that anything can mean anything to anyone at any given time...(la, la, la...)
"Everything is relative" is a mere rhetorical expression where I live, which doesn't mean that actually everything is relative (although it probably is, in a different universe things may be completely different). But that's not what I said, anyway. I said (repeatedly, I think): "significance, meaning & importance are always relative." Significance, meaning & importance are not everything.


Materialism, that a thing can be known, measured, that a concept can be predictive, reliable and valid...
Acc. to this, race is a valid concept. It can be measured (by physical taxonomy & DNA structure), the concept predicts certain taxonomic features & gene markers which can reliably found & validated.


You may feel the need to reply to this post by breaking it down into little blue boxes and following each with a one line zinger.
Zinger? Was new to me, interesting. Anyway, that is my preferred method, since people sometimes (try to) re-interpret my posts, this is the best way to show what I'm referring to when I write.

Tsuyoiko
23-07-05, 11:32
Hi Bossel! You seem to care a lot about this subject! What do you think about what the scientists (especially Lewontin and Dawkins) have to say about it?

bossel
28-07-05, 01:21
Hi Bossel! You seem to care a lot about this subject! What do you think about what the scientists (especially Lewontin and Dawkins) have to say about it?
Care? Not really, though I'm interested in evolution & parts of biology, but I have problems with the PC faction trying to reign into science.

As for Lewontin & Dawkins, having read nothing by themselves but only about them (except for some occasional article or essay by Dawkins, I think), I can't say much. Only that Lewontin seems to represent the ideologically charged (or maybe challenged) scientist I have come to despise. Dawkins on the other hand seems to convey a number of views I can agree with.

Tsuyoiko
28-07-05, 11:54
Bossel - I would recommend that you read Lewontin before accepting what his opponents have to say about him. I think I am right in saying that he is the foremost exponent of the 'race is not a scientifically valid taxonomy' faction. I find the arguments of non-experts much more convincing if they can demonstrate their knowledge of both sides of an argument.

As for 'ideologically charged' scientists - do you mean scientists who seem to twist the available data to fit their personal beliefs? I don't think this is true of Lewontin. People who challenge the status quo are often criticised, and I think that much of the criticism of his claims is politically motivated.

bossel
29-07-05, 01:59
As for 'ideologically charged' scientists - do you mean scientists who seem to twist the available data to fit their personal beliefs? I don't think this is true of Lewontin. People who challenge the status quo are often criticised, and I think that much of the criticism of his claims is politically motivated.
That may be true, but someone who tries to fit biology into a political ideology (I have read only some quotes by Lewontin & those may have been taken out of context, but they surely imply that he is ideologically charged.) should expect to be attacked on political grounds.

Tsuyoiko
29-07-05, 12:14
That may be true, but someone who tries to fit biology into a political ideology (I have read only some quotes by Lewontin & those may have been taken out of context, but they surely imply that he is ideologically charged.) should expect to be attacked on political grounds.
And from the other thread on this topic:

Nope, to think that everybody could be able to differentiate would be naive.
To say they should not be confused is not.

These two statements are contradictory, IMHO. If you accept that Lewontin "should expect to be attacked on political grounds" because his science may be ideologically motivated, then you are also failing to differentiate. A scientific approach would be, "regardless of Lewontin's political beliefs, let's see if his conclusions are supported by the available data".

No-name
29-07-05, 16:18
Tsuiyoko- Oooooh you're good! I humbly tremble in your presence. :-)

bossel
29-07-05, 23:28
These two statements are contradictory, IMHO. If you accept that Lewontin "should expect to be attacked on political grounds" because his science may be ideologically motivated, then you are also failing to differentiate. A scientific approach would be, "regardless of Lewontin's political beliefs, let's see if his conclusions are supported by the available data".
Obviously you follow a different logic than I do (but at least it seems to have created you a fan/groupie). If someone argues on ideological grounds, why should he expect not to be criticised on ideological grounds? & in which way does this expected criticism take away the possibility of criticism on scientific grounds? Contradictory? No way (unless, of course, my English abilities lack a certain quality here, but then you should be able to enlighten me).

bossel
30-07-05, 04:12
I had a little bit of time yesterday & went to the library. I borrowed The Triple Helix & The Doctrine of DNA, but didn't have time to read much of it. From what I've seen so far, Lewontin follows a philosophical approach more than anything else.

As I said, couldn't read much, but what struck me is that Lewontin seems to accept the existence of races. Quote:
"Regardless of one's political view, everyone must agree that we live in a world in which psychic and material welfare is very unevenly distributed. [...] There are rich countries and poor countries. Some races dominate others. Men and women have very unequal social and material power." (The Doctrine..., p.5/6)

No-name
30-07-05, 08:39
You're still winning the poll right now. Not too much interest though.

No-name
01-08-05, 05:20
Anybody hear of the Mulongeons from the Appalacian region. UV is looking at DNA markers and conducting research into their origin. Elvis Presley, Abraham Lincoln and Ava Gardner are supposed to be Mulongeon.

Tsuyoiko
01-08-05, 14:07
I had a little bit of time yesterday & went to the library. I borrowed The Triple Helix & The Doctrine of DNA, but didn't have time to read much of it. From what I've seen so far, Lewontin follows a philosophical approach more than anything else.


I'm so glad you decided to read Lewontin, and I hope my nagging had a part in this! I used to be a school librarian, and I still have this urge to get people to read stuff!

lexico
01-08-05, 14:34
You're still winning the poll right now.Well, the ratio is down from 60:40 to 55:45... the difference is closing.
Lewontin follows a philosophical approach more than anything else... what struck me is that Lewontin seems to accept the existence of races. .
Some races dominate others. Men and women have very unequal social and material power." (The Doctrine..., p.5/6)I know it wasn't meant that way, but I noticed that in the parallel passage "some races" can seamlessly divide into the male race and the female race. Hence his idea of "race" might have been intended to cover more general instances of exploitation/domination than the biological race as a distinctive strain within a species.

I'm so glad you decided to read Lewontin, and I hope my nagging had a part in this! I used to be a school librarian, and I still have this urge to get people to read stuff!Did you give out those personalised library cards where I get a star or a stamp whenever I finish reading a book for which I might win a prize, "Most Bibliomaniacal Reader of the Yr Award" ? :D

Tsuyoiko
01-08-05, 15:03
Did you give out those personalised library cards where I get a star or a stamp whenever I finish reading a book for which I might win a prize, "Most Bibliomaniacal Reader of the Yr Award" ? :D

I did loads of stuff like that!

Silverbackman
11-08-05, 05:29
All humans are different, but there are genetical characteristics (e.g. hair/eyes colour, size, facial trait, etc.) that enable us to categorise them into groups. It is not as simple as saying there are 3 main races (Caucasoid, Negroid, Mongoloid). Looking at the people of India, Central Asia and the Middle East, we clearly see that it is more complex. But even within (what's looks like) a clear-cut group, there are many 'subcategories'. For example, among Caucasoids (=Europeans), we can notice very clearly the difference between the North Germanic type (tall, blond, blue eyes, smaller nose, squarer face...) or Celtic type (blue eyes, dark or red hair, rounder face), and Italic type (dark hair and eyes, taller and longer nose, deep features), Hispanic type (less pronounced features than Italic), Greek type (straight nose, sometimes blue eyes), etc.

Even within one of these groups, we could divide further. E.g. The Frankic Germanic type is not the same as Scandinavian Germanic or Anglo-Saxon Germanic.

Things get more complicated once we look at mixed race regions, like the South of Germany (Celtic, Germanic and Latin, possibly with a bit of Slavic).

I this regard I am quite surprised at the ethnic homogenity of North East Asia (China, Korea, Japan). Some Japanese clearly have Ainu features, but otherwise they are almost impossible to tell appart (much more difficult than to tell two Germanic group apart).

In SE Asia, Indonesian and Malaysian are very easily distinguishable from Thai or Burmese, who are also easily disntinguishable from the Khmer (Cambodians). But there are so many ethnic tribes in Northern Thailand, Laos or Vietnam that it complicated things quite a bit.

In Africa, there is no way to confuse a Bantu (Central and South Africa; slightest fairer skin, round face, flat nose) from an Ethiopian (face/skull closer to Caucasoid, smaller nose, squarer face and much darker skin than Bantu).

I would put the Arabs in a separate division from Caucasoid, Negroid or Mongoloid. Dravidian people (originally from Southern India) are also a separate division. But today's Indians are mainly a mix of Caucasoid Aryans and Dravidians, which explains how two Indians can look completely different (some with skin as fair as a Mediterranean, others as dark as an Ethiopian + different features).

So is there races or subdivisions within humans ? Yes. Can we scientifically classify them, as we would classify different species of plants and animals (e.g. the hundreds of races of dog or horses) ? Yes. Can we crossbreed them and get new races ? Yes. There is no reason humans should be different from other life beings.

I agree. I think the reason why many people in the west now a days do not except races is because they think of it as "racist biology". It doesn't matter if there are superficial differences or races, we are all equal no matter what.

I would keep 3 main races, but perhaps make Middle Easterners and Indians in their own category. Latin America people are even more complicated!

You also forgot the 4th distinct race that are dieing out, the australoids ;).

Sprinkles
05-08-10, 00:03
Only a retard would say that the difference between the races is superficial.

Do you ever observe the world? The difference is superficial? Are you joking? I hope that you are, otherwise, that comment is a clear indication of stupidity.

Do you understand that the european populations have been separated from African populations for 600,000 years? That Europeans have neanderthal in them, and that those 600,000 years of evolution, per european climate, were significant enough to create isolated populations that did not breed and evolved with different pressures due to environment ala climate.

Where did this whole, "there is no race, or, the difference is superficial" originate? For the better part of recorded history Africans were considered stupid and as inferior to Europeans. This was a belief held by almost every person and every intellectual, philosopher, scientist, and theologian that walked the face of Europe. Why? It was understood, because it was true. Because we can observe patterns and formulate opinions about them based on the observation alone. Do we look at dogs and monkeys and believe in their superior intelligence? No. Because they're less intelligent, we observe their behavior, and we deduce the fact. Which is what has happened for thousands of years, in European cultures, and - in fact - is proven through IQ tests and various other measures of intelligence.

Anyone who believes "there is no racial difference" doesn't understand biology, genetics, evolutionary biology, the world, and is probably of less than average IQ themselves.

Sprinkles
05-08-10, 00:13
2) Race is a scientific topic and is definable through analysis of the genome.
3) Two people from the same race are more related, genetically, than two people from different races.



http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1893020/?tool=pubmed

DISCUSSIONS of genetic differences between major human populations have long been dominated by two facts: (a) Such differences account for only a small fraction of variance in allele frequencies, but nonetheless (b) multilocus statistics assign most individuals to the correct population. This is widely understood to reflect the increased discriminatory power of multilocus statistics. Yet Bamshad et al. (2004) showed, using multilocus statistics and nearly 400 polymorphic loci, that (c) pairs of individuals from different populations are often more similar than pairs from the same population. If multilocus statistics are so powerful, then how are we to understand this finding?

In what follows, we use several collections of loci genotyped in various human populations to examine the relationship between claims a, b, and c above. These data sets vary in the numbers of polymorphic loci genotyped, population sampling strategies, polymorphism ascertainment methods, and average allele frequencies. To assess claim c, we define ω as the frequency with which a pair of individuals from different populations is genetically more similar than a pair from the same population. We show that claim c, the observation of high ω, holds with small collections of loci. It holds even with hundreds of loci, especially if the populations sampled have not been isolated from each other for long. It breaks down, however, with data sets comprising thousands of loci genotyped in geographically distinct populations: In such cases, ω becomes zero. Classification methods similarly yield high error rates with few loci and almost no errors with thousands of loci. Unlike ω, however, classification statistics make use of aggregate properties of populations, so they can approach 100% accuracy with as few as 100 loci.

Wilhelm
05-08-10, 00:14
Only a retard would say that the difference between the races is superficial.

Do you ever observe the world? The difference is superficial? Are you joking? I hope that you are, otherwise, that comment is a clear indication of stupidity.

Do you understand that the european populations have been separated from African populations for 600,000 years? That Europeans have neanderthal in them, and that those 600,000 years of evolution, per european climate, were significant enough to create isolated populations that did not breed and evolved with different pressures due to environment ala climate.

Where did this whole, "there is no race, or, the difference is superficial" originate? For the better part of recorded history that Africans were considered stupid and as inferior to Europeans. This was a belief held by almost every person and every intellectual, philosopher, scientist, and theologian that walked the face of Europe. Why? It was understood, because it was true. Because we can observe patterns and formulate opinions about them based on the observation alone. Do we look at dogs and monkeys and believe in their superior intelligence? No. Because they're less intelligent, we observe their behavior, and we deduce the fact. Which is what has happened for thousands of years, in European cultures, and - in fact - is proven through IQ tests and various other measures of intelligence.

Anyone who believes "there is no racial difference" doesn't understand biology, genetics, evolutionary biology, the world, and is probably of less than average IQ themselves.
I agree. And of course if there were no races there wouldn't be racism, which is a contradiction.

Cambrius (The Red)
05-08-10, 01:03
Race certainly exists.

Chris
06-08-10, 08:59
Race certainly exists.

Agreed. As do the obvious differences. I think it's what makes the world an interesting place. Denying the premise is counter-intuitive if nothing else.

Riccardo
23-03-11, 15:42
Of course! But no race is superior to another. Diversity make the world beautiful, until there are people who understand how to accept different cultures and believes.

Rastko Pocesta
28-04-11, 17:18
There is only one race, the human race.

Reinaert
03-06-11, 15:10
There is only one race, the human race.

Hear Hear!!

I agree.

YDNA research proved it!

Knovas
03-06-11, 17:41
I think Race exists too, but I don't care who is better. Different does not necesarily mean anything else.

sparkey
03-06-11, 19:04
Hear Hear!!

I agree.

YDNA research proved it!

How did it prove it? Different suspected "races" had different haplogroup distributions, as expected if race did exist. I suppose you could argue that it showed greater interrelationship than expected, and reinforced the idea that human genetics are a continuum across the world...

Personally, I never really use "race" when analyzing the distribution of people. It's much more useful to describe historical ethnicities and cultures, I find. But that doesn't mean that racial distinctions can't be made.

Dagne
03-06-11, 22:29
And don't forget we are one race with Neanderthal, too! if we carry their genes :rolleyes2:

Reinaert
04-06-11, 19:06
How did it prove it? Different suspected "races" had different haplogroup distributions, as expected if race did exist. I suppose you could argue that it showed greater interrelationship than expected, and reinforced the idea that human genetics are a continuum across the world...

Personally, I never really use "race" when analyzing the distribution of people. It's much more useful to describe historical ethnicities and cultures, I find. But that doesn't mean that racial distinctions can't be made.

Well, simply because DNA research proves we are one race.. humans.

We could argue about YDNA haplo groups, but that's in fact irrelevant.
We all have a rather limited group of ancestors as our common relationship.
And that makes "races" irrelevant.

And there may be some "Neanderthal" genes mixed somewhere, but that doesn't matter. We are ONE PEOPLE.

Think of that, before anyone destroys Mother Earth!!!

Mzungu mchagga
05-06-11, 11:59
We will never answer that question, because there is no fixed definition of the term race. Or at least, no fixed point where to draw the line of division. As long as two partners can produce healthy and fertile offspring, they belong to the same specie. It is up to the observer to decide how many races he wants to see. In regards of humanity, the range lies between none and 6 billion.
That is why the term race is usually not used in scientific biology.

Taharqa
04-02-12, 02:24
Any credible scientist will tell you no it isn't.

Nugget
12-04-12, 03:54
"Race" is a social constuct used to place individuals into categories for specific purposes (positive or negative). DNA reveals the truth about individuals that can't been seen by the human eye. i am a cnancer researcher with a focus on genetics. A patient that looked "black" would enter my office and I would immediately create, in my mind, her breast cancer risk profile based on what we knew in those days. Black female = higher risk. Autosomal testing revealed what my eyes didn't see. Her complexion deceived me. She was 79% European, not African. More Caucasian than black. What does this mean for risk, response to chemotherapy, mortality and morbity? It means a heck of a lot! Race is antiquated.

LeBrok
12-04-12, 08:48
Nugget, you're partially right. America is the prime spot of races mixing scenario, in effect creating unclear situations in this regard. In 1000 years all the world will be mixed and of one race. Unfortunately till then we have to categorize people in relation to continent of birth which is strongly connected to different evolutionary past. Forget the colour of skin, or skin deep criteria. What if your patient's DNA test came and it showed he/she is 100% African? How would you categorize the person, African? Isn't it the racial classification? And even if you did dislike it strongly, you would be a bad doctor if you didn't apply proper health statistics for Africans. So what is wrong with this if used as classification for benefit of the patient, and not as a tool of social segregation?

Fire Haired
17-07-13, 23:36
Race does exist people try to deny it and say it is just a differnt skin color not true. Our Human family(there may have been other) began in subc shara africa about 200,000-300,00ybp. Over thousends of years differnt families formed. We have diffenrt gentic triats we have differnt features. All humans from what i can see have the same emoitional and mental abilites but we have differnt body builds.

Click here (http://www.eupedia.com/forum/threads/28822-Human-Family-Tree-discovered-through-globe13-austomnal-DNA) it explains the human family tree according to DNA

There are three human races Sub sahren African, Caucasian, and Oceania Mongoloid

Negroid is not a good name for sub Saharan African because some Oceania Mongoloid also have black skin and nappy hair.

MtDNA
25-08-14, 17:09
Of course there are races. A race, by definition, is a group of people that have had an extended period of inbreeding, with very little outbreeding.

RobertColumbia
08-07-15, 20:04
Or maybe 10,000 years ago, Noah and his family continued the human race after a world wide castrotophe. Just as possible as the above. ;oD

It's also possible that the story of Noah is based on real history, a retelling and re-retelling of stories passed down from the actual days of the mass die-off and bottleneck that has been distorted over time. If grandma kept telling you that she, her husband, Uncle George, and six other families were the only ones to survive the massive die-off that happened in the pop. 5,000 city that she lived in at age 20, maybe you'll remember it enough to tell it to your own descendants. Sooner or later, your great-grandkids decide to make the story more dramatic and re-imagine the city mayor as some sort of divinely gifted character and the City Evacuation Plan as some sort of prophecy.

RobertColumbia
23-07-15, 14:56
...
In Africa, there is no way to confuse a Bantu (Central and South Africa; slightest fairer skin, round face, flat nose) from an Ethiopian (face/skull closer to Caucasoid, smaller nose, squarer face and much darker skin than Bantu).

I would put the Arabs in a separate division from Caucasoid, Negroid or Mongoloid. Dravidian people (originally from Southern India) are also a separate division. But today's Indians are mainly a mix of Caucasoid Aryans and Dravidians, which explains how two Indians can look completely different (some with skin as fair as a Mediterranean, others as dark as an Ethiopian + different features).

So is there races or subdivisions within humans ? Yes. Can we scientifically classify them, as we would classify different species of plants and animals (e.g. the hundreds of races of dog or horses) ? Yes. Can we crossbreed them and get new races ? Yes. There is no reason humans should be different from other life beings.

Good point. I think that racial classification can exist, but that the idea that there are exactly four, and no more, distinctive races is obsolete and/or ideological. IME, Ethiopians have a very European-looking face, probably a result of the fact that Ethiopians, Arabs, Greeks, and Berbers are all descendants of a mixed population of all of their ancient progenitors. West Africans (e.g. Nigerians) are often a similar color to Ethiopians but look much less European. India is also problematic from a "four races" perspective because you end up with people who are not "white" in terms of color but who are ancestrally, culturally, and linguistically linked to European populations.

Tomenable
09-07-16, 00:35
Apparently there is still a real ongoing debate on the issue in question.

This guy wrote 193 pages challenging the idea that race doesn't exist - John Fuerst, "The Nature of Race: the Genealogy of the Concept and the Biological Construct’s Contemporaneous Utility", 2015.

PDF (193 pages): http://openpsych.net/OBG/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/The-Nature-of-Race-the-Genealogy-of-the-Concept-and-the-Biological-Constructs-Contemporaneous-Utility-Final.pdf

Abstract:

http://openpsych.net/OBG/2015/06/the-nature-of-race/


Racial constructionists, anti-naturalists, and anti-realists have challenged users of the biological race concept to provide and defend, from the perspective of biology, biological philosophy, and ethics, a biologically informed concept of race. In this paper, an onto-epistemology of biology is developed. What it is, by this, to be "biological real" and "biologically meaningful" and to represent a "biological natural division" is explained. Early 18th century race concepts are discussed in detail and are shown to be both sensible and not greatly dissimilar to modern concepts. A general biological race concept (GBRC) is developed. It is explained what the GBRC does and does not entail and how this concept unifies the plethora of specific ones, past and present. Other race concepts as developed in the philosophical literature are discussed in relation to the GBRC. The sense in which races are both real and natural is explained. Racial essentialism of the relational sort is shown to be coherent. Next, the GBRC is discussed in relation to anthropological discourse. Traditional human racial classifications are defended from common criticisms: historical incoherence, arbitrariness, cluster discordance, etc. Whether or not these traditional human races could qualify as taxa subspecies – or even species – is considered. It is argued that they could qualify as taxa subspecies by liberal readings of conventional standards. Further, it is pointed out that some species concepts potentially allow certain human populations to be designated as species. It is explained why, by conventional population genetic and statistical standards, genetic differences between major human racial groups are at least moderate. Behavioral genetic differences associated with human races are discussed in general and in specific. The matter of race differences in cognitive ability is briefly considered. Finally, the race concept is defended from various criticisms. First, logical and empirical critiques are dissected. These include: biological scientific, sociological, ontological, onto-epistemological, semantic, and teleological arguments. None are found to have any merit. Second, moral-based arguments are investigated in context to a general ethical frame and are counter-critiqued. Racial inequality, racial nepotism, and the “Racial Worldview" are discussed. What is dubbed the Anti-Racial Worldview is rejected on both empirical and moral grounds.

Tomenable
09-07-16, 00:36
And here the opposite view (but there is nothing informative here, I'm very disappointed):

Michael Yudell et al., "Taking race out of human genetics...", 2016:

http://www.sun.ac.za/english/faculty/healthsciences/cmel/Documents/taking%20race%20out%20of%20human%20genetics.pdf

I guess that whether race exists or not really depends on how one defines the whole concept.

But we should apply the same standards to humans, as to the rest of the Kingdom Animalia.

=====================

The Limits of Democratization:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmWIOByI3FU#t=2m32s

ihype02
12-10-16, 20:29
All humans are different, but there are genetical characteristics (e.g. hair/eyes colour, size, facial trait, etc.) that enable us to categorise them into groups. It is not as simple as saying there are 3 main races (Caucasoid, Negroid, Mongoloid). Looking at the people of India, Central Asia and the Middle East, we clearly see that it is more complex. But even within (what's looks like) a clear-cut group, there are many 'subcategories'. For example, among Caucasoids (=Europeans), we can notice very clearly the difference between the North Germanic type (tall, blond, blue eyes, smaller nose, squarer face...) or Celtic type (blue eyes, dark or red hair, rounder face), and Italic type (dark hair and eyes, taller and longer nose, deep features), Hispanic type (less pronounced features than Italic), Greek type (straight nose, sometimes blue eyes), etc.

Even within one of these groups, we could divide further. E.g. The Frankic Germanic type is not the same as Scandinavian Germanic or Anglo-Saxon Germanic.

Things get more complicated once we look at mixed race regions, like the South of Germany (Celtic, Germanic and Latin, possibly with a bit of Slavic).

I this regard I am quite surprised at the ethnic homogenity of North East Asia (China, Korea, Japan). Some Japanese clearly have Ainu features, but otherwise they are almost impossible to tell appart (much more difficult than to tell two Germanic group apart).

In SE Asia, Indonesian and Malaysian are very easily distinguishable from Thai or Burmese, who are also easily disntinguishable from the Khmer (Cambodians). But there are so many ethnic tribes in Northern Thailand, Laos or Vietnam that it complicated things quite a bit.

In Africa, there is no way to confuse a Bantu (Central and South Africa; slightest fairer skin, round face, flat nose) from an Ethiopian (face/skull closer to Caucasoid, smaller nose, squarer face and much darker skin than Bantu).

I would put the Arabs in a separate division from Caucasoid, Negroid or Mongoloid. Dravidian people (originally from Southern India) are also a separate division. But today's Indians are mainly a mix of Caucasoid Aryans and Dravidians, which explains how two Indians can look completely different (some with skin as fair as a Mediterranean, others as dark as an Ethiopian + different features).

So is there races or subdivisions within humans ? Yes. Can we scientifically classify them, as we would classify different species of plants and animals (e.g. the hundreds of races of dog or horses) ? Yes. Can we crossbreed them and get new races ? Yes. There is no reason humans should be different from other life beings.

I strongly agree with this post.

Minty
07-02-17, 05:59
I can clearly see a difference between different races of people. If somebody said that Africans were discriminated that is why they are behind others today. How do we explain the evolution in European Jews, particularly the Ashkenazim of northern and central Europe. In proportion to their population, Jews have made outsize contributions to Western civilization. A simple metric is that of Nobel prizes: Though Jews constitute only 0.2% of the world’s population, they won 14% of Nobel prizes in the first half of the 20th century, 29% in the second and so far 32% in the present century. There is something here that requires explanation. If Jewish success were purely cultural, such as hectoring mothers or a zeal for education, others should have been able to do as well by copying such cultural practices. It’s therefore reasonable to ask if genetic pressures in Jews’ special history may have enhanced their cognitive skills.
Just such a pressure is described by two economic historians, Maristella Botticini and Zvi Eckstein, in their book “The Chosen Few.” In 63 or 65 AD, the high priest Joshua ben Gamla decreed that every Jewish father should send his sons to school so that they could read and understand Jewish law. Jews at that time earned their living mostly by farming, as did everyone else, and education was both expensive and of little practical use. Many Jews abandoned Judaism for the new and less rigorous Jewish sect now known as Christianity.It’s reasonable to ask if genetic pressures in Jews’ special history may have enhanced their cognitive skills.
Botticini and Eckstein say nothing about genetics but evidently, if generation after generation the Jews less able to acquire literacy became Christians, literacy and related abilities would on average be enhanced among those who remained Jews.
As commerce started to pick up in medieval Europe, Jews as a community turned out to be ideally suited for the role of becoming Europe’s traders and money-lenders. In a world where most people were illiterate, Jews could read contracts, keep accounts, appraise collateral, and do business arithmetic. They formed a natural trading network through their co-religionists in other cities, and they had rabbinical courts to settle disputes. Jews moved into money-lending not because they were forced to do so, as some accounts suggest, but because they chose the profession, Botticini and Eckstein say. It was risky but highly profitable. The more able Jews thrived and, just as in the rest of the pre-19th century world, the richer were able to support more surviving children.
As Jews adapted to a cognitively demanding niche, their abilities increased to the point that the average IQ of Ashkenazi Jews is, at 110 to 115, the highest of any known ethnic group. The population geneticists Henry Harpending and Gregory Cochran have calculated that, assuming a high heritability of intelligence, Ashkenazi IQ could have risen by 15 points in just 500 years. Ashkenazi Jews first appear in Europe around 900 AD, and Jewish cognitive skills may have been increasing well before then.
The emergence of high cognitive ability among the Ashkenazim, if genetically based, is of interest both in itself and as an instance of natural selection shaping a population within the very recent past.

lee1962
08-11-17, 11:56
I would say that race definitely exists. I've got Asperger's syndrome, a condition that mainly affects people of northern European heritage. There are many other illnesses or conditions that are race-specific.

Comrade Petrov
17-05-18, 23:10
People are divided in CLASSES not RACES!!

Ygorcs
19-05-18, 18:12
The options are too limited. Yes, there is genetic structure and subsets of human populations who are much more related to each other than to others, forming clusters, but there is no way that a good scientific description of this reality can be done with a very simplistic "3 races" model. It's impossible to give a proper, sensible answer when the two options are opposite and equally unrealistic extremes.

Garrick
27-05-18, 23:45
Race does exist, there is no point denying it. The proof being skin colour of people. It is not exactly the best way to classify people though.

We can see in popular sites or books that physical characteristics between of racial groups are differentiated according to: skin colour, stature, head, face, eye, nose, body shape etc.

We can see classifications with 3, 5, 7 races etc.

Nothing problematic but how is it realistic or better scientific?

American biological anthropologist Livingstone argues that variability between populations which make up the species does not conform to the discrete packages which popular we call races.

His claim is: "There are no races, there are only clines".

Stuvanè
28-05-18, 19:55
In my medical file (for the use of doctors, people who do not have time to waste with the politically correct) there is written "Caucasian". Ditto for forensic anthropologists.

Inviato dal mio SM-J730F utilizzando Tapatalk

Georgewalley
29-05-18, 19:13
There's one race and that's called the human race. Humans can be different and show certain characteristics to specific regions influenced by climate, diet and other natural environmental factors.

IronSide
29-05-18, 19:38
Fst is useful I believe in determining races, the Sardinian in the first one is terribly wrong though, also Greeks are closer to Italians for example than they are to Iranians, the rest is accurate.

http://anthro.palomar.edu/vary/images/DNA_tree.gif

https://img.4plebs.org/boards/pol/image/1387/18/1387183957499.png

The largest human races are East Asian, Sub-Saharan African, and Caucasoid because they formed through massive migrations of farmers.

Héloïse
12-04-19, 13:12
I think no

Crank
05-09-20, 07:21
All populations are a mix. the population we came from was a mix of different people and the population of that population before that etc etc. Not sure about race but I read we migrated out of Africa later than thought and split into different routes and races later than thought.