Don't stifle debate 1

August 22, 2003

Michael Rutter's review of Frank Mieles' Conversations with Arthur Jensen is suitably ambivalent (Books, THES , August 8).

Rutter has previously suggested that some tendencies, including criminal, are fixed and can be diagnosed at birth.

Jensen was physically assaulted and was prevented from speaking about inherited intelligence after his seminal Harvard Educational Review article. The opposition was not scientific but ideological with the objective of an equality of outcomes. But opponents were never able to disprove the genetic basis of intelligence.

Rutter also describes the Pioneer as "a charity widely regarded as racist in its aims". But if research is scientific it cannot be "racist".

Jensen received no complaints on his recent tours of India and China. Jensen and Hans Eysenck remain the two most cited psychological sources. Opponents cannot keep the lid on the debate of inherited intelligence.

Angela Pinter
London E2

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