I've been reading up on some of this physical anthropology stuff lately. I especially like the pictures showing people from around the world. I've known about the basic concepts of the racial types in Europe for some time ("Nordic", "Alpine", "Mediterranean") for some time, though I've never gotten into the details of it before. I can definitely see that there's something to it (e.g. "Dalo-Falid" really looks like the typical "German" type to me, "Brunn" looks a lot like what I see when I think of a typical Irishman, etc.), but nonetheless I see a lot of problems with what I see being presented on these boards. I have no objections of a politically correct "race doesn't exist" or "all races are equal" variety, just problems with the logical and evidentiary support for the claims I see being made. I'll enumerate below, in no particular order:

1) There have been lots of population movements back and forth in Europe throughout history, and people have been freely intermarrying for a long time without any concern for "sub-race" (nationality/language/ethnicity/religion/class/etc. are going to be the main criteria for marital acceptability, aside from things like raw attraction to one another). If you look at children born of the same parents, you'll usually be able to spot several different "sub-races" (and often times, different ones altogether than those of the parents). So can these really be considered "sub-races" at all, rather than physical traits that are only weakly correlated with other genes, at least in areas where there has been considerable mixing?

2) Are there any known genetic correlates of sub-racial types? E.g., can you say that Hallstatt Nordics will generally have genes X, Y, and Z? Obviously there must be some genes involved in determining facial and skeletal characteristics, but if you tested two people of the same subracial type from different countries and calculated some measure of genetic distance, would they be more similar to each other than they would be to people of different "sub-races" but from the same geographical area? I highly doubt this.

3) Where are all the Alpines? On most of these racial maps, Alpines occupy vast swaths of territory. Yet on these boards, people are generally hard pressed to provide a photograph of an Alpine, even in places where they are said to predominate (France, Germany, SE Europe). What gives?

4) Pictures provided of Nordics and Mediterraneans tend to be thin, whereas what few pictures we get of Alpines and related types tend to be fat. I realize there is some difference in adiposity among human populations but this trend gives a false impression of what people look like. There are *definitely* some hefty Nordic types out there, and plenty of thin central Europeans.

5) Related to the above, Mediterraneans and especially Nordics tend to be represented by movie stars, models, and athletes, whereas the Alpines and related types tend to be portrayed by pretty goofy looking characters (I can hear the response already: "but that's what Alpines look like!"). Again, this is misleading.

6) The general theme here seems to be that dolichocephalic types (Nordics and Mediterraneans) are "progressive", and a bit further up the evolutionary chain than brachycephalic types, who are either survivals of or regressions toward a more primitive type. Is there *any* supporting evidence for this? IQ at least seems to show little variation throughout Europe. If I look up prominent people from a variety of areas (math, science, music, philosophy, literature, etc.) in countries like Germany, I see tons of round-headed types, hardly supporting the idea that Nordics are solely responsible for cultural advancement. Has anyone done any actual research showing that cephalic index correlates with anything else, or that dolichocephalic individuals are overrepresented at high-levels of achievement in any field of endeavor?

7) Neoteny, or the retention of juvenile traits into adulthood, is generally considered to have been a trend of human evolution, and also in the evolution of other animals such as dogs. Yet here, "paedomorphism" is considered a primitive trait. Has anyone addressed this?

8) Pretty much every single physical anthropologist and enthusiastic amateur seems to have his own classification scheme for the European sub-races, a different idea for how they are distributed geographically, and different ideas about how they got there, how the types are interrelated, and what their relative strengths and weaknesses may be, if any. Does this not signify that the theory is highly underdeveloped at this point in time?

Hmmmm.... well, that should be it for now. If anyone knowledgeable about this stuff would respond, I'd greatly appreciate it. Thanks!