Is there any evidence of a difference in temperment between the races

I double dare to anyone to find Armenians as a group to be chilled out and mellow (yes I can only give you anecdotes) , Armenians are known to be aggressive. If this isn’t true, how come every single person I have ever talked to agree with me?

OK liberals this is were you attack…attack me for bringing up anecdotes instead of peer-reviewed papers. Armenians are NOT mellow, lets cut the BS. The question is not IF they are mellow but rather WHY they are not. Is it cultural or genetic?

[Moderator Note]

Let’s avoid political jabs in GQ. I don’t think the requirement for cites is a “liberal” one, but rather something that is expected in this forum regardless of politics. I don’t think there’s a need to post anecdotes about any ethnicity here.

General Questions Moderator

Sorry to post anecdotes about an ethnicity here mods, but I feel it’s necessary to point out that of the dozen or so people I’ve known who identified themselves as Armenian, not a single one could be characterized as agressive.

The traditional racial groups (caucasian, african, asian) aren’t very meaningful in a scientific sense. There is far more genetic diversity in africans than the rest of humanity combined. This makes comparisons pointless, when two africans picked at random are typically genetically further apart than an african and a european.

I don’t know anything about Armenians, but even if this is true it doesn’t sound genetic in any way. If anything it’s cultural and perhaps a consequence of how Armenian national identity developed.

My brother in law’s girlfriend is Amernian, actually growing up there for the first 7 years, and she’s one of the kindest non-aggressive people I know, so a cite on universal Armenian aggression is needed for me at least.

What “race” are Armenians?

You are contradicting yourself right here, on two counts. What you declare as characteristics of human “race” (it’s only useful in sociological, not biological, contexts) is much, much, much broader than dog races or breeds; and second, dogs have been bred on purpose for certain characteristics, among them temperament, for generations. Therefore, some dogs are good guard dogs, some are very family- and child-friendly, others are more aggressive.

Human breeding has never been for any purpose like this on a large scale. Even in the centuries of arranged marriages, money or land was a more important factor than looks, and not influenced by genetics.

This is skewed obersevation, confusion of correlation and causation, lack of proper data, slander, and yes, does sound racially charged and motivated. If you want a scientific explanation, first bring scientific data and establish that the question you purport is actually valid that way. Then we can discuss possible causes. And in that case, we would first look at sociological explanations, and turn to biology only after exhausting all those avenues.

No and no.

Presumably because even sven is fed up to the gills trying to argue with racists and people of similar ilk with pre-conceived notions “just asking questions”? She voiced her frustration over hijackings of Africa threads by these idiots some time ago, and I can quite understand her frustration.

You have simply asserted, without any evidence at all, how people in one group behave and concluded that this must be genetic. That’s not how science works, and if you don’t want to understand this or accept basic defintions of people who know how this works, discussion about this is going to be frustrating and pointless.

No serous scientist would attempt those studies because they are pointless and unscientific. No, we don’t have the science to conclude how much genes come from Native Americans or from Africa; you’re completly misunderstanding how markers and descandent graphs work.

Increasing the percentage of one’s genes to lead to a measurable behaviour is not how science works at all. You need to read up first on how genetics work at all before you go wildly spouting ideas.

Scientists also don’t go looking for the Gay Gene, because that’s as unlikely and useless as your proposition.

The idea of race is of course arbitrary, but not necessarily invalid. People who live together for a long time generally have similar genetic features. People who live kind of close to that group are generally more similar to that group than they are to groups which live further away. Just because there’s no objective line dividing people into neat perfect groups doesn’t mean the whole concept of race needs to be abandoned. In fact, such concepts can be quite useful, as there are some products and medications that generally work better for one group of people than they do for another, due to those genetic features.

A color spectrum operates in a very similar way. Just because there’s some colors that are kind of blue but also kind of red, or kind of orange but closer to red than this other version of orange, doesn’t mean that we need to throw our hands up in the air and declare that identifying the different colors in the spectrum is pointless and “blue” doesn’t actually exist, because it’s just an arbitrary construct which different people can’t even universally agree on the definition of.

There are an infinite number of individual colors, just as there is infinite possible variation between people genetically, but sometimes the arbitrary lines can be useful.


I’ve already issued scamartistry a note for his post; I don’t think it’s necessary to get into further discussion of this issue.

General Questions Moderator

Shouldn’t be that hard to do? You must be joking. Actually, based on present knowledge, what you propose is way beyond our ability to study. It’s difficult enough in humans to tease out the effects of culture, development, and genetics on behavior; linking specific behaviors to a general “percentage” of genetic ancestry would be absurd in the extreme.

In any case, the genetic markers associated with various regional populations are are most often “neutral,” that is, they have no known effect on phenotype. There are some differences in the genes which have an effect on physical characteristics, physiology, etc., but these are generally not the ones that make up most genetic differentiation between populations. These would be the genes that would have an effect on behavior, so that the percentage of ancestry from a particular region would be meaningless.

Every part of the OP, including the idea that there are races at all, and that temperament is even definable, much less genetically determined, is scientifically unsupported. It’s not really an addressable question.

And some of it is suspiciously slanted, like the (unsupported, I note) claim that one “race” is more violent than another.

Putting aside the word “race” for the moment, it seems totally reasonable that a group of related people might tend to have one temperament or another, in the same way they might tend to have any other characteristic that’s at least partially based on genetics. However I can’t imagine anyone would have an easy time quantifying this across broad groups of people all over the world.

The traditional concept of race, which I suspect the OP is using, is completely invalid. It’s better just to think of human variation in terms of populations, rather than races as they are traditionally defined.

constanze appears to have failed reading up on how statistical correlation studies work. It works like this:

  • find an easy test to assign a parameter to people. Let’s say, “who did you vote for in the last election” - that’s a boolean variable that splits people into 2 groups
  • collect a bunch of statistics about them, e.g. their divorce rates, crime rates, STD rates, salary levels etc
  • see which values of that variable correlate with which descriptive statistics
  • publish it in your preferred political rag

Now that, of course, is too boring. Instead we can use a continually distributed variable, let’s say skin color of people of people of Chinese ethnicity who have lived in the "all roads lead to " Shanghai for the last ten years without being a “migrant”. Skin color can be objectively measured in a standard way using relevant equipment. Some Chinese (from the north) are lighter skinned than some others, you get the idea. So now we can do the same sort of statistical analysis trying to see what intervals of the color distribution correspond to what interesting clusters of observed behaviors and achievements. I obviously have no idea what such research would find and have no particular reason to believe it would find anything of any interest. And yet, it would be as “scientific” as any other correlation study.

Applying the above to the issue of genetics, we can assign the variable based not on the objectively measured skin color but rather on the presence of whatever “racial” genetic markers. Or, for certain racial groups, you can do what they have always done in the Caribbean, namely evaluate the degree of racial admixture by the skin color.

The example I used in the OP is dogs.
Different breeds of dog have different temperments - even if they are raised in exactly the same way, dogs of certain breeds are more likely to have certain dispositions (friendlier, less welcoming to strangers, more aggressive, less aggressive, etc)
This shows that temperment in animals is due in large part to genes - upbringing is not total (though obviously with good training dogs can overcome their natural inclinations, and individuals in a breed may differ from the breed norm.

It seems silly that you can point to animals and say “this breed is more aggressive” “this breed isn’t as intelligent” “this breed is more good with children”, and then say “but there is absolutely no effect in humans. None, and you are an idiot and a closet-racist for bringing it up”.

You would expect the effect to be greater in dogs since their evolution has been guided, but to deny that temperment can be genetic would seem to fly in the face of what we know about animals.

The bit about Britain, or the bit about African immigrants in Europe?

‘more good’??? :smack:

A collection of populations of humans with similar characteristics. How hard was that?