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The Gene Delusion: IQ and the environment

Posted Oct 26 2007 12:00am

An anonymous reader of Andrew Sullivan’s blog writes a superb comment, reproduced here:

“One thing Watson and others forget is that the brain is highly malleable based on environment. Although he is the father of DNA he knows very little about neuroplasticity and neurogenesis. Previously it was thought that the human brain was ‘hardwired’ after a certain age. This is not true. Not only is not true, but the human mind is capable of adaptation but actual neuron growth even late in life. Ten years ago this was thought impossible.

Neurogenesis and neuroplasticity proves that a nurturing social and family setting shifts IQ, perspective, and emotional IQ. The so-called bell curve isn’t genetic. Oppressed Tibetans and Chinese ethnic minorities -whose test scores soar in the United States and Canada- are 20-30 points lower in their homeland. That 20-30 points deficit is in the same range of a lot of groups that are attacked or threatened (Muslims in France, Christians in Nigeria, Blacks in America). Conversely when oppressed groups are removed from their environment their IQ, emotional health returns to a normal rate, thus proving that is NOT genetic.

It is plastic, shifting and based upon the environment.

That is why people

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