Before both men recently died, scholars Arthur Jensen and J.P. Rushton wrote a landmark paper arguing that the totality of evidence shows virtually no change in the U.S. black-white IQ gap in the nearly 100 years it’s been studied. If they’re right, it’s quite astonishing that the black-white IQ gap remained about one standard deviation during all that time despite the enormous change in both the culture (apartheid in 1917; a black president in 2008) and the biological environment (gains in nutrition have been so colossal that both blacks and whites are more than one standard deviation taller than they were in 1917). This is a challenge for those who minimize the role of genes in the black-white IQ gap, or argue that the racial gap is caused by norms of reaction (i.e. white genes causing higher IQ in a specific environment as opposed to whites being genetically smarter in absolute sense) because the environment has changed so much.
However a bigger challenge for the anti-Jensenists comes from an astonishing comment by scholar Michael Hart on page 111 of his book Understanding Human History. He writes: Indeed, it appears that not a single major invention of the last 20,000 years was made in sub-Saharan Africa.
So while social scientists have been arguing about whether the black-white IQ gap in America has or has not been diminishing over the 20th century; Michael Hart is claiming to have evidence that a significant global black < white IQ gap has existed for 200 centuries!!! In other words for as long as the two races have existed in their current form; if not a lot longer. If the durability of the black-white IQ gap across the tumultuous 20th century was not enough to devastate the norms of reaction argument, how about the durability across 20,000 years?
For example, on page 110-111, Hart writes:
In the 19th century, when European explorers first entered the “secluded zone” of sub-Saharan Africa, they were struck by how extremely primitive the tribes in the region were. This was not because Europeans were blinded by ethnic chauvinism. When European traders had reached China, they had brought back glowing accounts of Chinese civilization: The Chinese might be heathens, but there was no disputing their wealth, nor the quality of their engineering skills, nor the volume of their literature. In like fashion, Europeans who had seen Japan, India, Persia, and the Arab world did not dispute the quality of their architecture and their textiles, nor the elegance of their art, nor the ability of their leaders to capably administer a large
Of course, it might be said that all those regions had had the benefit of at least indirect contact with the West. However, when European explorers reached the New World — which had been even more isolated from the rest of the world than sub-Saharan Africa had been — they were dazzled by the large, prosperous cities they found there.
Nowhere in the secluded zone of sub-Saharan Africa have archaeologists found anything to compare with Machu Picchu in Peru, nor the ruins of Tikal in Yucatán, nor of Teotihuacán in Mexico, nor even with the statues found on tiny, remote Easter Island in the Pacific.
Is Michael Hart a credible source? Although I disagree strongly with parts of his book, he probably has a very high IQ given that he is both Ashkenazi Jewish (which is rare for an HBDer) and has more degrees than a thermometer (an A.B. from Cornell University, an L.L.B. from New York Law School, an M.S. in physics from Adelphi University, and a PhD in astronomy from Princeton University).
Of course critics would probably argue that Hart’s analysis is racist. But it’s worth noting that Hart has spoken out aggressively against certain forms of racism. For example, at an American Renaissance conference, when David Duke allegedly criticised Jewish power, Hart courageously confronted him before storming out, yelling: “You fucking Nazi, you’ve disgraced this meeting!”