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Thread: Large Brained Human Race from SA

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    Quote Originally Posted by Catterick View Post
    But how do modern "primitive" populations compare with their own Pleistocene ancestors?
    The Holocene is a long time. It extends from 2 million years ago all the way until the end of the last ice-age, about 10,000 years ago. However, I doubt modern hunter-gathers are very much different in appearance and behavior or mentality from their Holocene ancestors, at least if we are talking about the second half of the Holoene.

    Modern hunter-gatherers pursue the same way of life as their holocene ancestors i.e, they survive by hunting and gathering, and at least around the tropics they do so in much the same environment as existed during the Holocene.

    Therefor the only impetus for physical or mental change over the last 2 million years would be evolution through natural selection. A generally very slow and subtle process, at least compared to what can happen due to cultural change.

    For instance, the Neanderthals were creations of the Holocene, their technological culture (let alone their bodies) hardly changed for half a million years. Yet when modern humans encountered them upon entering Europe only 50,000 years ago, both groups interbred and co-existed for several thousand years more.

    I would argue that the biggest change that occurred in human mentality and IQ happened with the move from hunting and and gathering to agriculture.

    Then we see big physical changes in a very short time. Loss of physical size and strength, due to a lower quality diet is the most obvious. The average man lost about 2/3 of a foot in height after the adoption of agriculture. The average woman somewhat less. There was also a shorting of lifespan due to various factors to do with higher population density.

    Yet at the same time there was a proliferation of the kinds of behaviours that require high IQ. Things like writing, accounting and mathematics all reached a far higher level in early agricultural societies than they ever did among hunter gathers, most of whom run out of numerals with which to count when they run out of fingers and toes...

    I can't say for sure, but I have a fair hunch that a neanderthal if he was alive today would have a far harder time integrating into the modern world as say, a web designer or computer programmer, and thus finding a mate and raising a family, than he would have had integrating into early modern human society of 50,000 years ago or of a modern hunter gather society today.

    It seems to me that it wasn't until the adoption of agriculture and even more so urban-living that what we call IQ was most strongly selected for. Today the populations with the highest average IQ's are also those with some some of the longest histories of city dwelling and literacy.

    And that is in-spite of the fact that the urban environment is in many ways less healthy than a rural or wilderness environment. I don't think that that is a coincidence. I think that there is something about urban living that cultivates and selects for higher IQ.


    It may be the more stimulating or complex social environment of the town. Or the fact that many of the jobs that city dwellers perform are more intellectually demanding in certain ways that differ from what humans evolved to perform. That might have resulted in pressure to develop latent abilities to a higher level than was previously necessary.

    Whatever the reason I am in little doubt that urban living more than anything else has led to a change in human mentality that has made the modern world possible.
    Close observation may result in feelings of horror, wonder and awe at world you find yourself inhabiting.

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    Senior Member Catterick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Horned God View Post
    The Holocene is a long time. It extends from 2 million years ago all the way until the end of the last ice-age, about 10,000 years ago. However, I doubt modern hunter-gathers are very much different in appearance and behavior or mentality from their Holocene ancestors, at least if we are talking about the second half of the Holoene.
    The Holocene is post-Pleistocene, and the decrease in human cranial capacity during that time span has been global.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Catterick View Post
    The Holocene is post-Pleistocene, and the decrease in human cranial capacity during that time span has been global.
    Yet there is no evidence that the reduction in cranial capacity resulted in a reduction in IQ. In fact it's quite the opposite.

    There are examples of this in other species. Dogs for instance have smaller cranial capacity than wolves yet dogs are still at least as intelligent as wolves and can be trained to perform complex roles like guiding the blind that wolves cannot be trained or.

    My point is that cranial capacity is only one data point and intelligence is too complex a set of measurements to be contained by that one data point, especially when we are talking about a relatively small reduction in brain volume over the last 100,000 years or so.

    But if we're going back to the Pleistocene, I'm pretty sure that modern hunter gathers have both larger brains and are more intelligent than their ancestors from 2 million+ years ago. They have more complex tools and weapons, they make art and jewelry. What do you think?
    Close observation may result in feelings of horror, wonder and awe at world you find yourself inhabiting.

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    So explain to me how Sub-Saharan Africans made it to the Holocene. Sub-Saharan Africans seem to have no foresight or the ability to plan, nothing remotely like abstract thought processes and no logical thought processes, and little culture apes don't possess except fire. All they ever managed to do was to re-colonize African tropical forests in the Pleistocene and to live essentially like chimps and gorillas using very low level hunting and gathering methods. Why are they still with us?

    They are with us because evolution as manifested by natural selection has almost nothing to do with intelligence in Homo. It has to do with reproduction. If northern types, the Neanderthals, Denisovans, and H. erectus were able to reproduce only once per year as almost all northern animals do and African sapiens could reproduce twelve times per year as many tropical mammals, well, the proof is obvious.

    Today Sub-Saharan Africans are only smart enough (as a statistical generalization) to pick up a welfare check, not compete with any other races in a technological world---but that ability to pick up a welfare check is enough.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow View Post
    Today Sub-Saharan Africans are only smart enough (as a statistical generalization) to pick up a welfare check, not compete with any other races in a technological world---but that ability to pick up a welfare check is enough.
    Africans are indeed somewhat less intelligent than Europeans or Asians in terms of IQ but you're over-stating the level of the deficit quite a bit there I think.

    If the deplorable condition of todays African-americans was due entirely to genetics then in seems to me that their counter-parts in Africa would never have been capable of building peaceful societies based cultivating crops and herding animals, let alone organising themselves into kingdoms and raising armies and conquering other peoples (the Egyptians for instance). Yet they did all of those things in various places at various times. All of that requires a lot planing and fore-thought.

    It seems to me that African Americans as a group, and perhaps more than any group in america, are performing well below their genetic potential.
    Close observation may result in feelings of horror, wonder and awe at world you find yourself inhabiting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Horned God View Post
    Africans are indeed somewhat less intelligent than Europeans or Asians in terms of IQ but you're over-stating the level of the deficit quite a bit there I think.

    If the deplorable state of todays African-americans was due entirely to genetics then in seems to me that their counter-parts in Africa would never have been capable of building peaceful societies based cultivating crops and herding animals, let alone organising themselves into kingdoms and raising armies and conquering other peoples (the Egyptians for instance). Yet they did all of those things in various places at various times. All of that requires a lot planing and fore-thought.

    It seems to me that African Americans as a group, and perhaps more than any group in america, are performing well below their genetic potential.
    Egyptians were not Sub-Saharan Africans. Sub-Saharan Africans learned to cultivate crops only at the time of Christ. They never independently learned to read or write. They never formed specialized occupations to any degree required for a civilization. They never learned to build in stone except as taught by Arabs which they only mindlessly copied. Strong men became kings but they were really just war-thugs. Armies is hardly an African concept. Until the 16th Century and King Shaka, African armies only rarely even killed opposing soldiers. It was much the same as in New Guinea until recent times.

    You missed animal herding which they learned in the "African Neolithic" which for the rest of the world was the Bronze Age. Africans never learned big game hunting. They simply did not do it. This is the reason for the survival of the African fauna which elsewhere is called the Pleistocene fauna--extinct except in Africa by man's hand.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow View Post
    Egyptians were not Sub-Saharan Africans.
    I'm aware of that. I was referring to the Nubians conquering of Egypt in around 700 B.C and ruling it for 75 years. It's amazing to think what they managed all without knowledge of agriculture, metallurgy or even division of labour, now isn't it?


    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow View Post
    Sub-Saharan Africans learned to cultivate crops only at the time of Christ.
    I think it was a bit earlier than that, but the date isn't relevant. What is relevant is the fact that Africans were intellectually capable of figuring out how to cultivate grain crops in a tropical climate totally unlike that of the middle east and largely unsuited to grain cultivation.


    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow View Post
    They never independently learned to read or write.
    So what? Plenty of places didn't develop their own writing system. I think writing was invented independently no more than a handful of times in all of human history.

    But why develop a totally new writing system if there is already one available? Anyway, since you're finding fault with Africans for not being smart enough to invent things, what may I ask have YOU invented lately? I guessing not very much. So by that measure you could have a race of people just as smart as you are, on an island for a thousand years and they wouldn't have invented diddly squat, am I right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow View Post
    They never formed specialized occupations to any degree required for a civilization.
    That's simply not true. The Kingdom of Benin had an aristocracy a standing army, farmers, priests, metal workers, the whole shebang.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow View Post
    They never learned to build in stone except as taught by Arabs which they only mindlessly copied.
    "Mindlessly"? Ah come off it. By the same token any culture that copies a technology from another is doing so "mindlessly". In any case, sometimes mud bricks are good enough. They were good enough for the Sumerians for centuries.

    But regarding stone work that's not accurate either, see the kingdom of Nubia. They were building in stone a thousand years and more before Mohammad.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow View Post
    Strong men became kings but they were really just war-thugs. Armies is hardly an African concept. Until the 16th Century and King Shaka, African armies only rarely even killed opposing soldiers. It was much the same as in New Guinea until recent times.
    You could say exactly the same about Europe right the up until the beginning of the bronze age... All your thesis proves is that Africa was a few centuries behind in all of these developments which could simply be put down to factors such as its remoteness and the difficultly of adapting agricultural methodologies that were originally developed for an arid rather than for a tropical climate.

    I presume you are familiar with the devastating effects that the insect pests of the tropics, such the tsetse fly have on domestic animals that evolved in the arid climate of the middle east, where these pests don't exist? Or the fact that the majority of native Sub-Saharan herbivores such as the zebra and gnu have the defeated the best (white) minds to domesticate?

    You missed animal herding which they learned in the "African Neolithic" which for the rest of the world was the Bronze Age. Africans never learned big game hunting. They simply did not do it. This is the reason for the survival of the African fauna which elsewhere is called the Pleistocene fauna--extinct except in Africa by man's hand.
    No I mentioned herding. Btw there are European peoples such as the Sami for whom herding was the basis of their economy well into the 20th century. Are the Sami less intelligent than other Europeans in your opinion? Would you be willing to allow that environment might possibly be a factor in the case of the Sami? And if you are willing to allow that for the Sami then why not for the Africans? You wouldn't happen to be biased against Africans by any chance now would you, hmm?

    Africans may or may not have hunted big game but then perhaps there was no reason to? What would be the point in going to the trouble of killing an elephant when there were plenty of animals around that were far easier to kill and when most of the meat of an elephant was simply going to rot in the hot sun before it could be eaten?

    They may not have killed elephants but the Masai have a rite of passage whereby every young man, in order to be considered a warrior, must single handedly kill a lion with nothing but a spear and a wooden shield. You can't say that's not a pretty impressive feat of courage now can you?

    I'm afraid you're appraisal of African development is rather one-sided and yes, ill-informed. You seem to be looking for reasons to conclude that the only explanation for Africa's slower technological development is intellectual deficiency on the part of the Africans.

    Well, I'm here to tell you that that opinion can only be sustained by ignoring huge volumes of evidence from both the historical record and the present day and it is simplistic to the point of absurdity.
    Close observation may result in feelings of horror, wonder and awe at world you find yourself inhabiting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Horned God View Post
    Well, I'm here to tell you that that opinion can only be sustained by ignoring huge volumes of evidence from both the historical record and the present day and it is simplistic to the point of absurdity.
    No, it's YOUR views on race that can only be sustained by "ignoring huge volumes of evidence from both the historical record and the present day ... to the point of absurdity."

    Nubians ruling Egypt for 75 years — is that all you got? The claims about super pests and a lack of suitable fauna for domestication are just desperate attempts by liberal academics to make excuses for the overwhelming failures of sub-Saharan Africans as a race. Such excuses are made by the same people who point to high black incarceration rates as proof of systemic racism rather than high black crime rates.
    — Always outnumbered but never outclassed —

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    Senior Member Catterick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Horned God View Post
    But if we're going back to the Pleistocene, I'm pretty sure that modern hunter gathers have both larger brains and are more intelligent than their ancestors from 2 million+ years ago. They have more complex tools and weapons, they make art and jewelry. What do you think?
    I'm not talking about two million years ago, I'm talking about "Boskop" times when anatomically modern Africans had larger brains than Africans today (a global trend).

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Horned God View Post
    It seems to me that African Americans as a group, and perhaps more than any group in america, are performing well below their genetic potential.
    Worse: they suffer dysgenics in America. Some Nigerians are actually smart.

    http://www.unz.com/pfrost/no-blacks-...aid-they-were/

    Shadow is underestimating Africans, then again, apart from the forest kingdoms all the high civilisations there were partly white - Timbuktu, Axum, Meroe and so on.

    People shouldn't forget that environment constrains culture, which then exerts selection pressures. The plough never caught on in Africa because it requires oxen to stay in one place all the time so farming was restricted to horticulture by hand. Had cattle stayed in one place all the time like that they would have been susceptible to tsetse fly and probably other tropical diseases. Likewise pigs were never adopted in Africa because they aren't migratory. The necessity of all this mobility in much of the continent stifled urbanisation and advanced societies. Most African people must have missed out on the selection pressures for cognitive skills in other parts of the world.

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