Nature on Race, IQ, and Science Worth Doing
Here are the for & against articles:
Are there some areas of potential knowledge that scientists should not seek out? Or, if they do, should they keep the knowledge secret, hidden from the hoi polloi? Certainly Francis Bacon, that great theorist of the birth of modern science, thought so. For with knowledge comes power — potentially dangerous power. In his utopian novel The New Atlantis, scholars determined which of their findings were too dangerous to be shared. Modern governments, obsessed with biosecurity, make similar decisions about what can be researched, how, and in what way disseminated. Private companies bind researchers with non-disclosure and confidentiality agreements. Genetic tests for disorders that have no treatment, such as late-stage Alzheimer’s, are often not offered for ethical reasons. As Steven Shapin’s book The Scientific Life documents, the idea of free, untrammelled and publicly-disseminated research, if it ever corresponded to reality, looks distinctly unrealistic today.
To meet the canons of scientific enquiry a research project must meet two criteria….
Should scientists study race and IQ? YES: The scientific truth must be pursued, by Stephen Ceci & Wendy M. Williams
The Soviet Union lost a generation of genetics research to the politicization of science when Trofim Lysenko, director of biology under Joseph Stalin, parlayed his rejection of Mendelian genetics into a powerful political scientific movement. By the late 1920s, Lysenko had denounced academics embracing Mendelian genetics, which some said undermined tenets of Soviet society. His efforts to extinguish ‘harmful’ scientific ideas ruined opponents’ careers and delayed scientific progress.
It is difficult to imagine this situation repeating today, when rival views feed the scientific process, and inquiry and debate trump orthodoxy. Yet the spectre of Lysenkoism lurks in current scientific discourse on gender, race and intelligence…..