Scientists reject thesis of Nicholas Wade's book on the genetic origins of race
To the Editor:
As scientists dedicated to studying genetic variation, we thank David Dobbs for his review of Nicholas Wade’s “A Troublesome Inheritance: Genes, Race and Human History” (July 13), and for his description of Wade’s misappropriation of research from our field to support arguments about differences among human societies.
As discussed by Dobbs and many others, Wade juxtaposes an incomplete and inaccurate account of our research on human genetic differences with speculation that recent natural selection has led to worldwide differences in I.Q. test results, political institutions and economic development. We reject Wade’s implication that our findings substantiate his guesswork. They do not.
We are in full agreement that there is no support from the field of population genetics for Wade’s conjectures.
The writer is a professor of evolution and ecology at the University of California, Davis.
MICHAEL B. EISEN
The writer is a professor of molecular and cell biology at the University of California, Berkeley, and investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute.
The writer is a professor of computational biology at the University of California, Berkeley.
The writer is a professor of biology at Columbia University.
The writer is a professor of biology at Stanford University.
This letter was submitted on behalf of more than 100 faculty members in population genetics and evolutionary biology; their names and affiliations are available at cehg.stanford.edu/letter-from-population-geneticists/.
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