Archive for January, 2005

Mongolia’s reverse gender gap

I have appended an article below on Mongolia’s reverse gender gap in higher education…but, here is one thing to note: Looking over the scores on a recent entrance exam in the Mongolia-language department, he notes that 8 of the top 10 students are women. In economics, women are 7 of the top 10 students; in […]

Bare Branches

The Chicago Tribune reports on the surplus of males in China. Anyone paying attention would notice something odd about the elementary schools here. What the government and parents are awakening to–belatedly–is the danger inherent in what they see. There are too many boys. On the morning that first-semester grades were posted at Haikou City Ying […]

Pedantic note on Iraq

You can keep track of the blow-by-blow of the Iraq election on every other blog on the net it seems. The only thing I would like to add is this: the vast majority of Iraqi Kurds are Sunni, so instead of “low Sunni turnout” it should be “low Arab Sunni turnout.” No doubt most news […]


There is an article about Islamophobia by Kenan Malik in today’s London Sunday Times (News Review section). Malik challenges the idea that there has been a great surge of attacks and discrimination against Muslims in the UK. This reminds me of something I read about a recent TV film drama called Yasmin (UK, Channel 4 […]

Balancing Selection?

I’ve always lovedthis story: In the year 1886 the Grand Trunk Railway wanted to build the Victoria Bridge and it would span the mighty St. Lawrence River and connect Montreal to the Kahnawake Reserve. They contracted out the job to the Dominion Bridge Company. In exchange for being allowed to run the railroad through Mohawk […]

Intrafamilial variance

Geoffrey Miller in the The Mating Mind makes much of the fact that the offspring of any two given parents will display variance because they might possess different combinations of alleles on any given locus. Miller explains that this offers sexual selection an opportunity to weed out deleterious alleles from a population, helping to balance […]


FD Posted by razib at 05:20 AM

Monkey porn anyone?

According to researchers at Duke (Article in upcoming Current Biology), male monkeys will “pay” to look at pictures of: 1.) Female monkeys 2.) Dominant males Perhaps Pamela Anderson and Arnold Schwarzenegger should consider getting into the monkey business? (Via Slashdot) Posted by dobeln at 04:23 AM

Group Selection can work…just

I’ve frequently been sceptical about the plausibility of group selection – for example here – so I am honour-bound to report a model which makes a form of group selection somewhat more credible. The model, due to Henry Harpending and Alan Rogers, dates from 1987, but doesn’t seem to be as well known as it […]

Islam: essential and nominal

Lawrence Auster points to very long article he has written on Islam where he is criticizing Daniel Pipes’ attitude toward the religion: The Search for Moderate Islam. Auster also links to Pipes’ reply, which he characterizes as nominalist, and in turn Pipes’ terms Auster an essentialist. Pipes says: …I prefer to call my approach historical […]

Loose ends

John Emerson hypothesizes that the term "kayak" is of Turkic origin and reached Scandinavia from both the east and west ~1700. Under this model the Thule Inuit culture borrowed the term from neighboring Siberian peoples. The reality of circumpolar travel reminds us that though there are broad general trends in intercontinental separation (World Island vs. […]

Women in science on Science Friday

Women in Science. The guests are Nancy Hopkins (you know her), Marianne Bronner-Fraser (biology, Caltech), Meg Urry (physics, Caltech) and Nicole Weekes (psychology, Pomona). Should be archived at the above URL soon. Related: Over at his fMRI blog Aziz comments on the different uses of gray and white matter by men and women. Meghan O’Rourke […]

Crime – Make the Criminal Whole

We all know that there’s a cost to doing business – you know what I mean – you take the cost of your material inputs, your labor, and your overhead and try to sell you widget for more than you’ve paid. This is what makes the world go round. Now take this principle of cost […]

The Galtonian Revolution visits the NSCDC

I was sent this working paper today from the NSCDC about early childhood emotion. Usually, I need to ingest some type of analgesic compound before I can make it through these things, but this one smacks nicely of the hb-d theme of this blog. Of course you have to, somewhat, read between the lines, but […]

Fair Play for Chimps

The latest issue of Proceedings of the Royal Society B (biological sciences) has a paper with evidence that chimpanzees have a sense of ‘fairness’ dependent on whether the parties already know each other. Here’s the abstract from the Royal Society’s website: Tolerance for inequity increases with social closeness in chimpanzeesby SF Brosnan, HC Schiff and […]

Marriage & evolution

In The Symbolic Species Terrence Deacon argues that “marriage” was an ancient homonid response to the conundrum of group living as a monogamous species, that is, a socially constrained contract given meaning and force by symbolic concepts. The Ancestress Hypothesis: Visual Art As Adaptation Kathryn Coe also suggests that marriage is an old feature of […]

Outsource the Math Teacher

OK, so some of you may have noticed recently that I’m a bit peeved at the state of education, what with Anti-Racist Math, a feminist curriculm that focuses on reading about domestic violence, alcoholism and other domestic ills, (see this article and see Randall Parker’s take on the issue) which seems to thoroughly turn young […]

Modernity + Islam ~ Radicalism???

Fundamentalism begins at home is an article which reviews the theories of a French sociologist. I don’t buy the whole thesis, primarily because there is so much complexity in decomposing a construct like “Islamic fundamentalism.” Nevertheless I think it is a step forward to acknowledge that “religions” or “ways of life” do not simply flow […]

What’s Wrong With This Picture?

John at Discriminations posts a transcript from last Sunday’s Meet the Press, where the host, Tim Russert, interviews the House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Thomas on the issue of adjusting Social Security payments on the basis of race and gender. RUSSERT: “A gender adjustment–what does that mean?” REP. THOMAS: We also need to […]

African American views on HIV/AIDS

I sure many of you have seen the study reported in the Washington Post on AA beliefs concerning HIV. Here’s the breakdown of data: These beliefs are explained in the article as being based on “This is not a bunch of crazy people running around saying they’re out to get us,” Akbar said. The belief […]