Typos p. 133: incompatabilities [= incompatibilities]; p. 134: self-esteeem [= self-esteem]; p. 138: Waltfishes [= Weltfishes]; p. 144: Wolkmann [= Woltmann]
The Source of Aristocratic Quality II
36 The Consequences of Uniformity of Type and Standardization
We have seen that, both in man and animals, in a state of nature there is a tendency to form isolated and inbreeding groups. Thank to the conditions thus imposed, extreme uniformity of type ultimately prevails within such groups; and, given the necessary time and number of generations, even new races and new species may result But, in order to complete the picture, we should have to include the operation of mutation which, subsequent to the separation of groups from main bodies, may play a part in further differentiation. (See N.S. Chap. by N. W. Timofeeff-Ressovsky, Mutation and Geographical Variation, pp. 7678 and 100104.)
Now, we have seen that the most obvious, measurable result of isolation and inbreeding is the establishment of uniformity of type in the group. So inevitable is this outcome that we have the assurance of anthropologists that even in mixed communities such as our own with their extreme individual differentiation, if given the necessary time and preserved from all accretions from outside, isolation an inbreeding would ultimately bring about uniformity of type and hence a new race.
We have, moreover, ascertained that, with uniformity of type conditions arise which make it impossible for breeding to occur between disparate parents. Under such conditions, therefore, the danger of disharmonies and disproportions between the offspring's bodily parts is avoided, and the most hazardous and disturbing feature of bisexual reproduction, which is the independent inheritance of bodily parts from either parent and either parental stock, is eliminated.
Apart from the obvious desirability of such a state, whether from the standpoint of smooth uneventful functioning, health beauty, harmony, or efficiency in short, psycho-physical quality
This inference, however, receives impressive and independent support when we examine the behaviour of such isolated and inbreeding units, whether animal or human. For, since behaviour, if it scores any advantage, is just as likely to be preserved by the action of Natural Selection as any other psycho physical feature which secures survival, we are entitled to draw certain conclusions from a close scrutiny of the behaviour of these isolated and inbred units. In fact, we cannot be far wrong if we see a connexion between such behaviour and the condition of isolation and inbreeding, and regard the two as probably interdependent, and preserved in combination.
Now, we have seen that the harmony and optimal proportions ultimately attained by the bodily parts of organisms bred from non-disparate parents, may be disturbed, if not destroyed, when the members of a group that has achieved morphological uniformity by means of isolation and inbreeding, become mixed with a stock differing from them morphologically.
But, in view of the many untoward consequences, slight or serious, of disharmonies due to mixing, and the gradual elimination, in a state of nature, of disharmonious organisms because of their inability to survive, it would appear most probable, a priori, that all surviving stocks had preserved the behaviour which safeguarded them against disharmonies.
For, seeing that there is a substantial advantage, from the point of view of viability, in having bodily harmony and optimal proportions, and survival must often in the past have depended on it, the behaviour securing it, although quite unconscious, would become ingrained through Natural Selection, so that surviving species and races would have acquired an instinctive sense of kind or of kinship, for the simple reason that those not manifesting this behaviour had fallen by the wayside.
If, however, under the guidance of a biologist like Darwin, we turn to the zoological aspect of the question, we find ample justification for this a priori conjecture. There does, in fact, appear to be an instinct, even in different strains of the same species of animals, to segregate, to prefer their like, and thus to preserve whatever standardization their strain may have achieved.
In Chapter XVI of (157), Darwin speaks of the preference shown by certain domestic races to breed with their own kind, as "a fact of some importance, for it is a step towards that instinctive feeling which helps to keep closely allied species in a state of nature distinct."
Assuming that this amended meaning is correct, he tells us in Chapter I (157) that the Mexican Alco dog "apparently dislikes dogs of other kinds", and "the hairless endemic dog of Paraguay . . . mixes less with the European races than these do with each other." In Chapter XVI, again, we learn that "in Paraguay the horses have much freedom and . . . the native horses of the same colour and size prefer associating with each other, and that horses, which have been imported from Entre Rios and Bande Oriental into Paraguay, likewise prefer associating together. In Circassia six sub-races of the horse have received distinct names; and . . . horses of three of these races, whilst living a free life, almost always refuse to mingle and cross and will even attack one another."
Furthermore, in "a district stocked with heavy Lincolnshire and Light Norfolk sheep . . . both kinds, though bred together, when turned out, in a short time separate to a sheep . . . as long as there is plenty of grass the two breeds keep themselves as distinct as rooks and pigeons. . . . On one of the Faroe Islands, not more than half a mile in diameter, the half-wild black sheep are said not to have readily mixed with the imported white sheep. Even the semi monstrous ancon sheep of modern origin have been observed to keep together, separating themselves from the rest of the flock when put into enclosures with other sheep." Of the dark and pale-coloured herds of fallow-deer, long kept together in the Forest of Dean, in High Meadow Woods, and in the New Forest, Darwin says: "they have never been known to mingle".
He relates similar facts of pigeons, geese, cattle, monkeys, etc., and as an extreme example of the kind, in Part II, Chapter XVIII of (42), he quotes John Hunter who, of a female zebra said: "she would not admit the address of a male ass until he was painted so as to resemble a zebra . . . then she received him readily." [See also (157) Vol. II, Chap. XVI.]
By implication, Dr. E. Mayr confirms the above findings, though in regard to animals in a wild state (which is important from the standpoint of what has been said above), when he declares: "It has been proven again and again for birds and many other animals that several species can live side by side in nature without normally hybridizing, even though they are highly or completely fertile with one another in artificial crosses." [(143) p. 163.]
Since the author first began to keep goats, eleven years ago, he
In his monograph on A Herd of Red Deer (1937), F. Fraser Darling points out that "among stag companies" there is a distinct tendency even "for age groups to graze together." (Chap. IV), a fact which he again refers to twice in Chapter V.
According to W. Powell-Owen, F.B.S.A., a writer on poultry, fowls also recognize colours and will attack birds of a different colour from themselves. On this account, to avoid bullying, he recommends that "the garden poultry-keeper should keep one breed and variety and colour." (Norfolk and Suffolk Journal and Diss Express, 27.4.45.)
From a passage in (109), indeed, it would seem that this predilection in favour of like to like and resistance to mingling is true even of insects, for in the article "Problems of the Origin of Species", by Lancelot Hogben, we are told (p. 280) that "it has recently been shown that a definite preference of like for like exists when white-eyed mutants and wild-type individuals of Drosophila are bred together".
As to Man, the instinct of aloofness in well-defined strains is displayed in so many peoples both civilized and uncivilized that, in view of the evidence collected on the subject in Chapter II of (26), it seems unnecessary to burden these pages with a repetition of it. For the truth is that among the different races, strains, and breeds of men, the deep sense of negativism towards other races, strains, and breeds, is as noticeable as it is among animals.
"In nature," says Kluckhohn, "more often than not, animals avoid or are certainly hostile to similar animals of different colour or appearance." And he points out that "the fact that human beings react negatively to other human beings must not be overlooked". [(99) Chap. V.] Westermark, in his History of Human Marriage (Vol. II, p. 41), says: "probably every race considers it a disgrace, if not a crime, to marry within a different race, at least if it be an inferior one".
Keith, who quotes with approval the claim made by Lord Kames in Sketches of the History of Man (1819, Vol. I, Prelim. Discourse), that "there is no propensity in human nature more general than aversion from strangers" (see also Vol. II, Book II), and believes that "like will to like" throughout the living world [(111) pp. 4041], ascribes the tendency in animals and men to avoid strains, breeds, and races different from themselves and to seek isolation, to what he calls a "group spirit", or "clannishness" an instinct "which impels us to favour our own kind", and claims that this is common to all human social groups and animal societies, "be they ant or ape". (Ibid., p. 361.) In (44) p. 3 he speaks of Man's
And how did he account for this instinct, this clan spirit, which drives groups of animals and men of the same constitution and appearance to choose isolation?
He says: "Seas, mountains and deserts serve to separate communities; but it is not on physical barriers that nature depends for the isolation of Tribes. We may speak of this barrier as tribal mentality . . . a mental mechanism built into the framework of the human brain." And later on he says: the "psychological instrument, for . . . the ordinance of tribal isolation is dictated by the centres lodged in the most ancient part of the brain". [(55) pp. 5, 106, and 143.]
But when he attempts to trace the genesis of the instinct, he is less penetrating and, scientifically, less sound. For he says [(111) p. 41]: "If we regard a group as having been separated from other groups in order to inbreed, and so to work out the evolutionary potentialities of its genes, then we can see why it should resent instinctively the intrusion of outsiders bringing with them other genes."
Can we on these lines see so easily why? It is very questionable. Why, in the first place, should we assume that a group separates from the other groups in order to inbreed? What advantage could animals or primitive men necessarily see in inbreeding as such? And even if Man could recognize such an advantage, how could we expect animals to do so?
The same remarks apply to working out "the evolutionary potentialities of its genes". By what mechanism, by what association of behaviour with a survival factor, can we suppose that such an end has been deliberately secured in animals and primitive Man? Keith is surely assuming too much here, and his reasoning is far fetched.
In his Presidential Address to the Australian Association for the Advancement of Science, 1921, Sir Baldwin Spencer said: "The extraordinary number of tribes, each with its own dialect and occupying its own country, is one of the most difficult things to explain in Australian Ethnology" [quoted in (55) p. 142]. Evidently, then, he saw a mystery in the instinct of isolation and made no attempt to solve it. Nor is he alone in this. Other investigators have also seen the mystery without being able to offer any solution of it.
Allee, for instance [(2) p. 7], says: "Deegener recognized that certain groups of animals are held together by a social force of instinct, of which we know at present relatively little. . . . One may think of the satisfaction of the so-called 'social force' or 'instinct' as having a definite value for the animal so satisfied."
Thorpe, writing on "Ecology and the Future of Systematics", says of the isolating mechanisms at work in nature, "the mode of origin of these mechanisms remains a puzzle." [(109) p. 355.]
But, in view of what is at stake, and the consequences, in the form of instinctive behaviour, which would probably result when, owing to the factor of the independent inheritance of bodily parts from disparate parents, Natural Selection had consistently favoured those creatures who had escaped the effects of this factor by acquiring group uniformity, is there any difficulty in concluding that the behaviour which secures isolation and keeps a group exclusive, should have become perpetuated in all surviving species? For if, as Bugnion says: "we assume that every action useful for the conservation of the species tends to leave a durable impression on the brain, and accordingly to become hereditary, the genesis of instinctive activity unfolds itself clearly and convincingly before our minds". [(112) p. 29. Also Conclusions 6, 7, and 8.] The segregating and isolating impulse in animals and Man, through the advantage secured by those who possessed it i.e. preserving them from the adverse consequences of the independent inheritance of bodily parts from disparate parents is thus easily seen to foster an instinctive sense of group aloofness in all surviving members of an inbred and differentiated stock, except perhaps in those whose fertility made such preservative behaviour unnecessary. Moreover, can there be any difficulty in identifying those areas of the brain which determine the instinctive behaviour in question with what Keith calls its "most ancient parts"? For the survival of existing species argues optimal psycho-physical conditions, and, as we have seen, among these optimal conditions are smooth functioning and efficiency due to the harmony, ideal proportions and exact correspondence of their bodily parts a result secured only when breeding takes place between parents belonging to a stock or group that has achieved morphological uniformity. The impulses in the organism securing the conditions which lead to morphological uniformity of the group must, therefore, have operated from the earliest times and may well arise from "the most ancient parts of the brain". Nor, in these instinctive impulses leading to isolation and inbreeding and thence to uniformity are we concerned only with the avoidance of inheriting disharmonious parts from disparate parents; for, as we saw in Section 33 above, the danger of reversionary and degenerative developments is also avoided.
Dendy came nearest to our point of view on this matter when he wrote [(14) Chap. III]: "The instinctive aversion to foreigners which lies at the root of national feeling is perhaps not altogether as irrational as it appears at first sight; for it naturally tends to keep
Except for Dendy, no other thinker in this field has so far advanced this solution of the problem of the isolation instinct and the instinct of aloofness in segregated uniform stocks (Keith's "group spirit" or "clannishness"); but if, as a solution, it is defective, it would be interesting to know where and how.
But whether it be granted or not, the fact is that the whole of the active principle implied by such words as "race" or "breed", or by such terms as "ethnic group" (favoured by Ashley Montagu, for instance) turns, not on purity of descent from one of the primary divisions of mankind for we now know that this today is an impossibility but precisely on that avoidance of inheriting bodily parts independently from disparate parents, which can be achieved only when morphological uniformity has been reached by a stock. For, as we have seen, it is admitted by all schools of anthropology, including the Columbian (of which more anon), that even a highly differentiated or heterogeneous population can attain to homogeneity, that is morphological uniformity, if only they are isolated and left to inbreed long enough without accretions from outside.
It is, therefore, perhaps not without profound significance the in all recent books published with the idea of belittling the importance of "breed", or "race", the factor of the independent inheritance, of bodily parts from disparate parents, on which, as we have seen, an eminent authority like Crew lays such stress (see p. 100 ante), is either minimized or, more usually, not referred to at all. Long before any of the above facts were known to the present writer, he had decided, on the score of the independent inheritance of teeth and jaws alone, that results equally serious in other parts of the body must inevitably follow random breeding from disparate types; and his friends, including the medical Editor of the series to which (26) belongs, are aware that at least twenty years ago he was constantly insisting on tracing the etiology of much modern disability and debility, acute or sub-acute, to the psycho-physical disharmonies resulting from present-day chaotic methods of mating.
37 Supplementary Remarks on Breeding from Disparates
The Columbian School of Anthropology takes a view of its own about the origin of the instinct of isolation and of aloofness in Man and animals which is summed up by some in the emotion-loaded
Ashley Montagu, for instance [(96) Chap. II] the emotional tone of the title of this book gives some idea of the scientific soundness to be expected from it! pokes fun at Keith and, with the obvious intention of denigrating him, couples him with General Friedrich von Bernhardi for declaring that there is a natural aloofness and exclusiveness in all distinctive animal or human groups. But, apart from the fact that he forgets that others besides Keith are involved, the reasons the Professor gives for disputing the existence of this instinct are so flimsy and so consonant with the overtoned and angry temper of his book, that they are negligible. Only his reliance on his late master's judgment could have given him the courage, as a scientist, to risk such undignified means of persuasion.
Ruth Benedict is another member of the Columbian School who takes the same view. But it is only fair to say she is more sober than Ashley Montagu. She says of the instinct of isolation, aloofness, and hostility to strange groups, in segregated uniform stocks, "there is strong positive evidence that such an instinct does not exist". [(134) p. 52.] And what is this strong evidence?
I suspect that it derives from one of her master's books; for, Boas [(131) p. 16], who seems also to forget that many authorities, just as well qualified as Keith, believe in the instinct in question (see Sec. 36 ante), challenges Sir Arthur "to prove that race antipathy is 'implanted by nature'". And what is the only evidence he advances in support of the challenge?
He says (p. 15): "The free intermingling of slave-owners with their female slaves and the resulting striking decrease in the number of full blooded Negroes, the progressive development of a half-blood Indian population and the readiness of inter-marriage with Indians where economic advantages may be gained by such means, show clearly that there is no biological foundation for race feeling."
The disingenuousness of this argument will be apparent even to the uninitiated when it is remembered that the Colonial slave-owners and slave-drivers of the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries, were a class of men drawn from a population in England and Scotland already wholly sophisticated and denaturalized as regards either a sound conscious, or a vigorously instinctive, biological attitude towards human mating. As I shall show in a moment, both the conscious and instinctive components of this attitude had long been undermined before ever the occasion arose to display its absence in respect of Negro and Indian women. So that as evidence of the lack in Man and animals of a "biological foundation for race feeling", it is worthless. We find the same
Besides, there is another factor which Boas appears to have overlooked. The whites who owned slaves in the East Indies and America throughout the period involved, were men living in a strange environment and climate. They, moreover, enjoyed powers almost of life and death over the coloured population they owned and ruled. They were neither disciplined, noble, nor generous enough to resist the temptation which such absolute power constantly presented. The notorious cruelties they habitually perpetrated are a sufficient proof of the abuses to which it led. So that, again, to instance their behaviour as a sufficient ground for denying in Man an attitude found everywhere, both in unsophisticated human groups and in animals, is to set a trap only for the ill-informed.
Finally to dispose of this argument once and for all even if it were possible to base upon it, as Boas does, the denial of an instinct of isolation and aloofness in human communities, how does his argument affect the animal world, where the presence of the instinct in question has been attested by unimpeachable authorities?
Why do writers of the Columbian School never mention Crew's grave warning about the consequences of the independent inheritance of bodily parts from disparate parents? Their omission is all the more strange, seeing that this is really the crux of the whole matter.
38 Conclusions from Sections 3537
When we look at ourselves and the crowds in our cities and towns; when we explore East Anglia or the Western counties, and study the rustics of our countryside, we cannot fail, if we keep a fresh critical eye, to notice first of all how conspicuously different every individual person is from every other, and furthermore how unattractive the prevailing majority are. No pleasing, no national cast of countenance unites them. No recognizable style of merely homely beauty proclaims them fellow-countrymen. Pervasive plainness is their only bond that and varying degrees of sickness and could their portraits all be assembled, they would be pronounced the work of an incompetent draughtsman who too often descended to excesses of coarseness and vulgarity.
This is not rhetorical. It is an attempt to call modern Man to wakefulness regarding his plight.
When, however, after schooling ourselves to note the prevailing ugliness and physical inferiority of our fellows and ourselves and, after observing how seldom the average rises to the level of even tolerable plainness and vigour, we reflect on the causes of the spectacle before us, what is our conclusion? It should now be clear that the shortcomings which do not happen to result from temporary indisposition or hereditary taints, weaknesses, or defects, may be regarded as due chiefly to the conflicts, discords, and disharmonies of psycho-physical features inherited independently from long lines of disparate parents and forebears, coupled with all those retrograde elements which are the outcome of the reversions following random breeding. When, moreover, we remember that these external signs of psycho-physical maladjustment are, on the score of the evidence advanced, probably no more than the visible counterpart of conflicts and disharmonies equally serious concealed beneath the skin of every individual about us, high and low, certain questions can hardly fail to form in our minds.
If we are wont to think realistically about the relation of psyche to soma, we may ask ourselves how we can reasonably expect our modern civilized communities to be capable of quality, order, beauty, harmony, and proportion, when they are themselves the embodiment of the opposite of these conditions? How can disorder and conflict produce order and harmony? How can ugliness and disproportion express itself in beauty and balance? Should we not be romantic to look for such results? Above all, how can creatures who, owing to random cross-breeding are all probably examples of some degree of reversion or regression to a former evolutionary stage, hope to deal adequately with a civilization that belongs to a more developed type?
Dendy, who can speak of differences of blood and brain cells causing "incompatabilities of temperament" [(14) Chap. Ill], observes that "A mongrel is no more desirable among human beings than it is amongst domesticated animals". [(14) Chap. VIII.] But what we never find explicitly stated by biologists, although they imply it often enough, is the fact which constitutes the essential basis of our thesis namely, that the most common and most unheeded form of mongrelization which occurs today, is that which results from the mating of disparate types within the same nation. And in so far as we are the first to have pointed out the dire
But this is not to say that modern populations as a whole are totally unaware at least subconsciously of the dire results of this mongrelization. For if the disorder of their features argues a corresponding disorder of their organs, glands, and nerve centres; if the increasing coarseness of their appearance points to regressive characters in them, it is inconceivable that they can fail to be vaguely or partially conscious of their deplorable plight. It is most unlikely, on the score of Adler's findings alone, that they can fail to suffer from deep and stubborn feelings of inferiority; a condition which makes them so avid of props to their self-esteem, so intolerant of threats to it, and so anxious to be assured that they are worthy, that they are all ready to flare up at the first sign of admiration withheld, and to fawn and adore where it is perseveringly and maybe dishonestly given.
As Philip Mairet says: "Modern men are haunted by a craving to be reassured of their worth"; and he points out that "in theory all are equal . . . but in soul they are nearly frantic with unsatisfied ambition", [(1) Chaps. III and IV.]
Has any reader ever met any modern man, woman, adolescent, or child, in any sphere of life, who is free from inferiority feelings? We confess we have not.
Karen Horney, in her book [(108) Chap. 12], speaks of "inferiority feelings" as "perhaps the most common evil of our times"; and she adds that they are "a combination of anxiety-motivated belittling tendencies and a realization of existing defects".
Adler, who had the genius to detect the root of inferiority feelings in the individual's sense of some "organic inferiority", supplied the key to this prevalent disease of modern mankind. (Studie über Minderwertigkeit von Organen, 1907, and Praxis und Theorie der Individual-Psychologie, 1920, Chaps. IV and VI.) When, therefore, we find populations like those of modern England, Europe, and America, revealing all the outward signs of being anything but creatures of quality throughout, and may infer from their looks that they are also chaos within, and probably degenerate to boot, we may with confidence expect in their behaviour all the consequences of dominant inferiority feelings.
The mad scramble for the prestige which can constantly reassure them about their worth; the incessant pursuit of approval from their fellows which stills their hunger for props to their self-esteeem; the still more reckless stampede after visible signs of superiority, such as wealth and all that it can secure in the form of convincing proofs
Well might Burton recently exclaim: "It is even possible that underlying the chaos visible today is Man's failure to treat himself as a living organism." [(126) 1949, p. 79.]
As to Man's failure to treat himself as a living organism, I shall have more to say below. Meanwhile, attention must be called to other matters.
We have seen that there appears to be so little consciousness of the conditions depicted and, therefore, so little alarm about them, that we find a handful of quite reputable publicists recommending educative means for creating an élite out of the existing population of these islands. (See Chap. Ill above.) That is to say, we are confidently assured that without taking any steps to produce people who are creatures of quality throughout, we can yet hope to obtain an élite by certain disciplines and external influences applied to a group of individuals taken from the wildly random-bred populations of Western Civilization.
In this proposal, above all, we perceive the fundamentally romantic nature of even the best modern schemes of reform. For, except perhaps Mannheim who, albeit dimly and inadequately, at least appreciates the need of first "remaking man", those who advance it are really staking on a long exploded faith in dualism. They assume, consciously or unconsciously (probably the latter), that by grappling energetically enough with the individual's "soul", and "changing his heart", or, as Mannheim puts it, transforming "his thought and action", a fine psycho-physical being can be produced out of human rubbish, and can be made to function as a creature of quality when he is the opposite. They fondly imagine that by bringing certain outside forces to bear on merely one generation of latter-day disharmonious mongrels (T. S. Eliot), a superior caste can be conjured into being, that will express, discern, inspire, and command quality.
Are the men who hope for such a consummation perhaps still believers in savage magic? Or do they know the truth and dare not, in these democratic days, speak it for fear of being unpopular?
They may know that unless a modern man be born again he cannot arise in the United Kingdom as a creature of quality. But they appreciate the present impossibility, or immense difficulty, of instituting the reforms that would effect such a rebirth.
We say we sympathize, because we too know the stupendous difficulties, especially now, of introducing the measures for effecting this rebirth and of establishing the values that would make such measures acceptable.
But because we recognize the present difficulties of the only effective reform, are we justified in pretending that something quite different and wholly inadequate will do just as well?
Such a pretence may partake of courtesy, kindliness, or tact. But it is still pretence and, in view of the gravity of the world's plight, shows a lack of energy and courage.
A similar lack is shown by those who, in their anxiety over present trends and immediate prospects, prescribe the Collingwood combination of aristocracy and democracy. For, seeing that the fundamental demand of democrats, their passion in fact, is, as we have shown (Sec. 13 ante) to establish equality at all costs, and that this condition so completely dominates their thoughts and valuations that no inborn distinction between one man and another is tolerated, we cannot hope to evolve out of a political and social régime based on the neglect of discrimination, a society in which even biological superiority, not to mention any other kind, can become a title to respect, not to speak of rank.
As Conklin remarks: "Under popular forms of government the great mass of mankind cannot be expected to observe the laws of good breeding and to eliminate from reproduction all but the very best hereditary lines, and the most that can be expected from the prevention of defectives is that the race may be saved from further deterioration." [(73) p. 575.]
Without the observation of "the laws of good breeding", however, the population of a democratic state, besides its millions of halt, lame, blind, deaf, insane, mentally defective, toothless, and bespectacled people, becomes what we have at the moment a mass of highly differentiated individuals, all disparate, all random-bred, and therefore incapable of producing a society having order and quality. How, then, can they measure these qualities in others? Presumably, these advocates of an aristocracy assume that the "aristocratic" leaders will be selected, or promoted in some way by the masses. But how is this to happen if the latter lack the psycho-physical essentials for assessing quality? Besides, even if they possessed these essentials, where could they now find leaders of quality?
Thus, when the anonymous author of (20) exhorts county colleges to reflect in all their activities "a recognition of and respect for quality", we can sympathize with his anxiety to restore these attributes in the nation without in the least believing that educating the present population will have the expected effect. It is significant, however, that he should betray concern about the matter.
Provisionally, then, we can formulate two fundamental rules of the aristocrat and of the nation that is to produce men of quality.
(1) By means of segregation, inbreeding, ruthless selection, and the gradual psycho-physical standardization to which they lead, the undesirable effects of the independent inheritance of bodily parts from disparate parents must be rendered impossible, or as nearly impossible as the normal slight variability of individuals, even in standardized stocks, allows.
(2) The regressions and reversions (i.e. the instability both of body cells and of lately acquired specific psycho-physical characters in highly evolved stocks) which result from random-breeding between disparate stocks, types, and strains, and the degeneracy which such regressions involve, must be prevented by breeding only from uniform stocks.
N.B. It will have been noted that, in the above section, we have used the words degeneration and degeneracy. As these words have been abused and rendered almost meaningless by inaccurate and slovenly writers and speakers; as, moreover, in many hands they have been degraded, like the words Reactionary, Tory, Communist, Red, Fascist, Nazi, Complex, Quisling, etc. to the rank of a mere verbal missile, devoid of every connotation except that of the intention to offend, the more thoughtful reader is entitled to a precise definition of the sense in which they are used here.
It is in this last sense that we use the words above to describe the consequences of regression and reversion through random-breeding.
39 A Note on "Race"
From the year 1933 up to the end of World War II, the need felt by the opponents of Germany's rulers to discredit the attitude of the National Socialists towards Race, and to nail to the counter, as counterfeit, their idea and their very use of the word, this word, among the people of the United Nations has, to all intents and purposes, become as obscene as the schoolboy's famous monosyllable. To use it, however carefully, in any circle, now provokes only an embarrassed silence. What is more, the user of it is instantly classed as an ignoramus who has neither read nor heard of our Julian Huxleys, our Ruth Benedicts, Gene Waltfishes, Ashley Montagus, Dahlbergs, Boases, Haddons, Hogbens, etc., and their attack on all who still imagine that the word has some meaning.
If we consult such wholly objective biological treatises as recent as Mayr's (143), or (109), edited by Julian Huxley, we learn that the process spoken of as "raciation" (i.e. the forming of races) is, as the reader has discovered in Sections 3336 above, effected by certain "isolating mechanisms at work in nature", which tend to split off from a main body of animals or plants, a group or groups which, subsequently, by inbreeding and the operation of the set of genes they have borne away with them, plus mutation, ultimately become so much differentiated from their original stock as to become what may legitimately be called a "race".
Thus race is a taxonomic term meaning a variant of a species which has become so through isolation and inbreeding, and has acquired distinctive features which have become standardized throughout its members and breeds true.
That is the connotation of the word "race", and in this sense it is correct to speak of the Mongolian, the Negroid, the Eskimo, the Australasian, and the Caucasian race. The fact that, since these separate "divisions" of the human species became differentiated through isolation and inbreeding, millions of them, owing to travel, vastly increased facilities of transport, and the breaking down of all barriers, may have become mongrelized, has nothing whatsoever to do with our conception of what race is, any more than the fact that, in the canine species, many distinctive races of dogs may, in our towns and villages, have become mongrelized, can alter our conception of what race means when applied to dogs of a pure-bred type. If a Cockney or rural racketeer chooses to speak of his mongrel as of a "pure race" or "pure bred", need we throw up our hands in despair, as many scientists have done since 1933, and declare the word "race" to be meaningless? As for those scientists and there are one or two even of them who, in their eagerness to browbeat the uninformed and make them drop the word "race" with reference to Man, assure them that no such thing as "race" can exist because all races of mankind are able to breed together and produce offspring that can be fertile nothing could be more disingenuous. Science has never claimed that races could not mingle and produce fertile offspring. All that has been claimed is that species could not do so. The mere fact that the various races of dogs can all be interbred, unless differences of size preclude copulation, would suffice to refute that myth. So that if different races of mankind have proved capable of breeding and producing fertile offspring, this has no
A. C. Allee explains the matter well: "If a given species," he says, "is isolated into breeding colonies in such a way that but little emigration occurs between them, a condition known to exist in nature, in the course of time, as Professor Wright shows, the species will become divided into local races. This will happen although at the time of separation the populations were all homogeneous, and the environment of all remains essentially similar." [(153) p. 103. See also pp. 104108.]
Indeed, as we have seen in Section 35 above, even those anthropologists who are most anxious to deprive us of the word "race" and the ideas behind it, readily acknowledge that the original purity of a stock is no essential condition to the production of a race a population of uniform type with definite characteristics that will breed true. If isolation and inbreeding can endure long enough, even a heterogeneous people like those of present-day Britain, could become a race.
Undoubtedly, the sanest of all authorities on this question is Hankins and, seeing that he is respected and accepted by the Columbian School, we cannot do better than follow him.
He subjects "racists", like Count Gobineau, Houston Stewart Chamberlain, Ludwig Woltmann, L. L. Reimer, Vacher de Lapouge, Otto Ammon, Madison Grant, Carl C. Brigham, Lothrop Stoddard, McDougall, Clinton Stoddard Burr, and others, to ruthless analysis and criticism for their loose treatment of the question of race and their exaggerated claims about the particular race each happens to champion. He shows conclusively, for instance, that to advance any reasons for postulating in modern or recent Europe the superiority of the "blond-dolichocephalic Aryan", or long heads in general, or "Nordics" or "Teutons", is pure romanticism. He also shows how unfounded are all claims to "race" which may be advanced by any present-day European or American nation.
"The human groups now existent," he says, "will range . . . all the way from a high degree of racial purity in small isolated groups found here and there, which for many generations have remained in complete freedom from outside influence, such as certain Eskimo tribes mentioned by Boas, to the extreme hybridity characteristic of such great cosmopolitan centres as Constantinople." . . . For "purity of a high degree could only be preserved in areas of geographical isolation, such as islands, mountain valleys, or desert oases. . . . So far as Europe is concerned, even moderately pure races exist, if at all, only in isolated areas here and there". [(127) pp. 267, 271, 274.]
This is plain enough, and the fact that certain discredited political parties have falsely claimed racial integrity for a national
So much for the modern drive to rid us of an idea and a word!
There are, however, two other aspects of the question of race which still remain to be considered. First, the relative ability of the various races of mankind; and secondly, the relation of culture to race.
Here, again, we may go far afield and cover much valuable space if we do not confine ourselves to only a few authorities.
From the fact of the mixed origin of the peoples who, as far as we know, have been founders of great civilizations, Hankins argues that we cannot claim that purity of race, or that any pure race or races in particular have been alone responsible for the highest civilizations of which we have a record. Thus he demolishes the theories of the Teutonists, the Aryanists, Nordicists, Gallicists, Celtists et hoc genus omne, and wholly justifies even those of their critics who condemn this line of argument on egalitarian and palpably emotional lines. [(127) Chaps. Ill, IV, V, VI, etc.]
Nevertheless, he goes a little too far when, for instance, he states dogmatically that "there is no record of a pure race having of its own initiative developed a high culture" [(127) p. 348]. For, although the remote antiquity of the pre-dynastic Egyptians makes it difficult to assert positively that they developed a high culture on their "own initiative" alone, the probability is that they did do so. For we know that they were "a remarkably homogeneous and unmixed race"; that they had a system of hieroglyphic writing already "highly developed", were "civilized enough in 4241 B.C. to observe the risings of stars and to fix the length of the solar year within a few hours", and that their potters were "producing vases so admirable from the technical and artistic point of view" that their "successors never surpassed and seldom equalled them". In fact, Professor Eric Peet, speaking of the potter of this period, says: "he belonged to one of those rare and happy periods when the craftsman seems incapable of an error of taste, and in consequence almost every form that leaves his hands is a thing of beauty." [(18) Vol. I, Chap. VI, i and ii.] There is much more evidence to this effect, while the apparently sudden emergence of a high and peculiarly Egyptian civilization under the earliest dynasties argues a period of preparation during which most of the major discoveries and cultural feats must already have been accomplished. [Breasted confirms this (84) Intro., p. 29, whilst in paragraph 44 he says that "true alphabetic letters" were "discovered in Egypt two thousand
But although Hankins dismisses the Madison Grants, the Lothrop Stoddards, and the Houston-Stewart Chamberlains as untrustworthy, he rightly declines to swing over, as their opponents do, to an extremist attitude of complete racial egalitarianism which is as absurd as the attitude which they condemn in the publicists above mentioned.
To say, as the Columbian School do, for instance, that there is no qualitative difference between the various races of Man and that all existing peoples, no matter what their colour, form, history, traditional habits, and particular adaptations may have been, are equal and similarly endowed temperamentally and intellectually, is even more ridiculous than to select the Aryans, the Nordics, or the Teutons as the leading race.
Boas, Ashley Montagu, and Ruth Benedict are all guilty of these gross exaggerations, and even Gunnar Dahlberg of Upsala University, falls into the same error and incidentally displays in the title of his book the same emotional, if not angry, attitude. [See Chap. XI of (136).] Typically specious too is the reasoning of Spitz on this very point, for in trying to plead the Cause of Racial Equality, he is capable of the following passage: "Even if it were argued that whites are intellectually superior to negroes, it would not thereby be established that all negroes are inferior to all whites." [(116) Chap. 6, iiiB.] No, of course it would not! But what has that got to do with the question? Spitz could be shown an institution for morons and mental defectives in London where he would find whites with less intelligence than a cat or dog. Would that prove that one must not argue that Man is intellectually superior to the beasts? On this point we would advise Spitz to study Hankins's careful and impartial discussions of the whole problem of the relative capacities of White and Negro [(127 pp. 308323]. One may have the greatest respect for the "standard negro type" of Africa, as J. L. Myres calls him [(18) Chap. I, IV], and yet appreciate the force of Hankins's reasoning and conclude that, generally speaking, the White is intellectually the Negro's superior.
Ashley Montagu is another who, if not typical of the whole school, is sufficiently extreme for his views to stand as the ultimatum of its standpoint; and he denies that "there is any justification for over-zealous or emotional claims that any one of them [the races of Man] is in any way superior to another". [(96) Chap. I.]
Passing over without comment his right to charge others with emotionalism when his own treatise is called Man's Most Dangerous Myth, The Fallacy of Race; if we turn to the kind of argument he uses, we find him not hesitating to appeal to the emotions of the
A more disingenuous statement it would be difficult to find in any book purporting to be scientific. In extremis, a public debater might perhaps venture to make it before an audience specially hand-picked for ignorance. But to make it in a treatise alleged to be scientific is surely unprecedented.
For Science assures us that these marked differences of colour, which distinguish the principal races of Man, are due to periods of isolated development and gene mutation under wholly different conditions, which probably endured for hundreds of thousands of years. [See (127) p. 291.] Nor are these external distinctions confined to the skin colour. The latter is, indeed, commonly associated with peculiarities of form and feature. It is, therefore, impossible that they should all have been produced without corresponding specializations both beneath the skin and in the temperamental, instinctive, and intellectual equipment. Indeed, to contest this amounts to claiming an independence of psychological characters, which, in view of our present knowledge, is no longer tenable.
Even Boas himself, probably in an unguarded moment, supports this view when he says [(131) p. 8]: "There is no doubt in my mind that there is a very definite association between the biological make-up of the individual and the physiological and psychological functioning of his body. The claim that only social and other environmental conditions determine the reactions of the individual disregards the most elementary observations, like differences of heart beat, basal metabolism, or gland development; and mental differences in their relation to extreme anatomical disturbances of the nervous system. There are organic reasons why individuals differ in their mental behaviour."
It is therefore, quite unsound to assume equality of psychological equipment and behaviour where marked somatic differences can be discerned.
On these grounds, Hankins who, I repeat, is accepted as an authority by the school whose extreme views about the equality of races we have been examining, writes as follows: "The most obvious
Kluckhohn, who also cannot be accused of any sympathy with special pleaders like Chamberlain and Woltmann, says: "Because race prejudice leads to social and international sickness there is the temptation [to which the Columbian School have yielded] to deny without sufficient evidence all validity and significance to the concept of race even in the sense of 'breed' or 'stock'. The fact that current popular notions of 'race' are largely mythological and without acceptable scientific underpinning should not lead us to throw the baby out with the bath." [(99) Chap. V.]
Thus Hankins concludes: "one must beware of unconsciously assuming that because all men are human that, therefore, their differences are negligible." And he adds: "If there are physical differences one seems on safe ground in inferring that there must be mental differences also. Mental powers represent the functioning of brain and nerve tissue, and it is not to be supposed that these would have remained identical from race to race while other physical traits were undergoing evolutionary changes." [(127) pp. 264 and 291. See also pp. 299302. Goldenweiser, in (82), p. 392, comes to much the same conclusion. See also (130) p. 518.]
With these very reasonable conclusions it is impossible not to agree, and since they forestall much of Hankins's detailed and statistical support of them, this support must, I fear, be taken for granted in these pages; although all readers who still harbour any doubts concerning them are advised to consult Hankins's book in order to satisfy themselves regarding their validity.
If then, with the history of the last 10,000 years before us, we see certain world areas producing high civilizations, whilst in other parts stagnation at much lower levels persists; if, moreover, in spite of the process known as Diffusion, by which cultural elements spread from one people to another, we find certain large populations still unable to develop a civilization displaying high achievements, we are forced to infer that, in this matter, initial endowment is decisive and that those races, or mixture of races, which have been
As Hankins says: "There is a racial factor in civilization. . . . High cultures have only been produced by the combination of well-endowed races." [(127) p. 374.]
When, therefore, Boas declares that he does not believe that "any convincing proof has ever been given of a direct relation between race and culture" [(131) p. 265], what he must mean is, not that it was always a toss-up whether the great civilizations of the world should be the product of men of Australoid, Negroid, Eskimo, or Caucasian stock, but rather that there is no convincing proof that any pure variety alone of the Caucasian race was responsible for the highest civilization. When, however, Ruth Benedict tells us "culture is not a function of race" [(134) p. 11], it is difficult to know what she means. This, however, is certain, if she wishes to imply that potentially all races of mankind were equally capable of producing the higher civilizations of the past, she is talking nonsense; for history happens to prove that only a few specially well-endowed races, or mixtures of specially well-endowed races, were ever concerned in these feats of culture. Even if she wishes to imply that it was environment which initiated the impulse to higher cultures, and that any race, placed in the environment in which the higher cultures were created, would have been capable of producing them if she means that, she is at variance with her great master Boas who, speaking of environment, declared, "I do not see how the view that it is the primary moulder of culture can be supported by any facts." [(131) p. 278.] Lord Raglan takes a similar view. He says [(126) 1946, p. 40]: "We must abandon the idea that civilization is bound to arise if the environment is suitable." [Crew concurs: (113) Introduction, as does also Haldane: (81) Chap. V.]
It seems, therefore, as if there were much to be said for the suggestion first made by George Pitt-Rivers that every race has what he calls its own "culture potential", beyond which it cannot go unless it become mingled with a race of higher cultural potentiality than its own. He defines "culture potential" as "a term applied to innate constructive ability; the capacity to develop, under suitable conditions, artistic, scientific, or technical skill, and temperamental disposition". Later he adds: "Yet facts prove that culture potential cannot be modified without first modifying blood." (The Clash of Culture, 1927, p. 3.)
This position which, although never so precisely stated, was implied by Gobineau [(60) Tome I, especially Chap. XIV], appears to fit the historical records as we know them; and those who, in spite of these records, maintain that all human races are equally endowed for lofty cultural achievements, if only the necessary
It will have been noticed that, in the above note on Race, we have carefully avoided all references to such authorities as Keith, Reibmayr, Sieck, etc., who are never in any doubt concerning the importance of race and its relation to culture. We have done this, not because we think Keith, and those who share his point of view are mistaken, or that they are in any respect to be classed with the Stewart Chamberlains, the Madison Grants and the Lothrop Stoddards; but because we felt that in such a brief discussion of the subject, it would be more fair and also more convincing to keep wholly to authorities whom the Columbian School, and such English defenders of race-equality as Huxley, Haddon and Hogben, both recognize and approve, than to rely on scientists known to be hostile to what Keith calls "universalism" and what most people understand by "Internationalism". [(55) p. 46.]
At all events, the above short discussion has made it clear that although the uniformity attained by segregated inbreeding is one of (he essentials for producing psycho-physical organisms that have quality, because such uniformity prevents the disharmonious conflicts and chaos arising from the independent inheritance of bodily parts from disparate parents, as well as the degeneracy due to reversion under the same conditions, it is not the only source of that quality capable of producing a high culture. To this end there must, in addition, always be a "high culture potential" high endowment, in the ancestors of any such segregated and inbreeding groups.
So that if the observation of rules I and II, given at the end of Section 37 above, is to lead to an aristocracy capable of founding, developing, and leading a high culture, according to the standards established by such precedents as, for instance, Ancient Egypt, these rules must be observed by a race, or mixture of races, already highly endowed before the period of segregation and inbreeding begins. Otherwise the quality produced will never be outstanding.
We have only to think of the many Australian tribes discovered and commented upon with surprise by Sir Baldwin Spencer, or the many inbred island communities in the Pacific, or the Eskimos mentioned by Boas [(7) Chap. II], in order to appreciate that isolation and inbreeding alone, no matter how much protracted, while they certainly lead to psycho-physical uniformity and, therefore, to creatures of quality who may evolve truly aristocratic leadership within their own limited scale of values, will not neces-
Consider, for instance, the Norfolk Islanders to mention only one concrete example. They are descended from an original stock which, in 1790, consisted of nine English mutineer seamen, six Tahitan men, and fifteen Tahitan women. Of none of these original ancestors could it be claimed that they were highly endowed from the standpoint of European standards. The nine Englishmen were perfectly ordinary seamen, probably no better and no worse than their corresponding numbers on any ship then sailing the high seas. As to the Tahitans, they came from a stock which, despite centuries of isolation and inbreeding, had produced no lofty culture. Thus of none of the thirty would descendants be expected who were likely to create and develop a high culture, or produce men of any greatness. Nor did subsequent events belie this expectation. For, although H. L. Shapiro speaks of their uniformity and the stabilization of their type and their health and resistance to disease, and explains these qualities "by the long-continued and extensive inbreeding among the Islanders" (in one individual, instead of four possible great-great-grandfathers there was only one Fletcher Christian), we hear of no great figures produced by these people, or of any great spontaneous contribution to culture. [(37) pp. 58, 68, 69.]
We shall, however, be able to convince ourselves in the sequel that, where cultures of outstanding merit have so far been produced, the following three conditions have always been consciously or unconsciously observed, or happen to have been established by a people, or a combination of peoples, highly endowed: (a) the prevention of the independent inheritance of bodily parts from disparate parents, (b) the prevention of reversionary stigmata of degeneration, and (c) the acquisition, through segregation and inbreeding, of genetic homogeneity.