THE CRO-MAGNON MAN WAS MORE INTELLIGENT THAN PRESENT MAN (II)
As I was saying in my previous article, Broca had set himself to compare the intelligence of the Cro-Magnon man with that of modern man, but he abandoned the project. I have resumed this project and have proven that the Cro-Magnon’s level of intelligence was superior to today’s human levels; that ever since the Palaeolithic, human intelligence was on a downward slope – a phenomenon that I have named anthropolysis. I will attempt a different demonstration here, distinct from the previous one.
In this article, I shall compare the Cro-Magnon’s level of intelligence with that of today’s Egyptians and also Egyptians before the Industrial Revolution. I have chosen the Egyptians because they have once built a civilization that was the most advanced in the world at a certain age. A similar comparison may also be drawn between the Cro-Magnon and modern Greeks. The result would be the same: the Palaeolithic hunter was more intelligent.
I will begin by comparing the Cro-Magnon with the Inuit populations from the past few centuries.
In respect to technological innovation, we can say that the Cro-Magnon was superior to the Inuit. The Inuit living a few centuries ago did not have any weapons or tools unknown to the Cro-Magnon. The difference is that the Inuit has inherited them, whereas the Cro-Magnon has invented them. Another difference is that we have access to the entire technology used by the Inuit, whereas we only know a part of the Cro-Magnon’s. As such, any new discovery may very well tip the scales in favour of the Palaeolithic hunter. As technical innovation requires firstly and foremost high spatial intelligence and as the Inuit possess this type of intelligence to a very high degree among current populations, we can draw the conclusion that Cro-Magnons too possessed it to a very high degree.
Concerning artistic intelligence, it seems that in this area too the Cro-Magnon is superior. Cro-Magnons too have performed sculptures similar to those of Arctic hunters but they have also excelled in cave paintings.
Regarding verbal intelligence, it is very likely that it was higher in the case of the Cro-Magnon, as a Palaeolithic group had more members than an Inuit family; in addition, the surrounding environment was more varied. Thus, both elements required greater verbal performances. It is likely that verbal intelligence was subject to a higher pressure of selection in the case of the Palaeolithic hunter, and hence superior to the Inuit’s.
As the Cro-Magnon group had more members, an alpha male had access to more females than an Inuit, which increased natural selection, thus giving rise to better conditions for increasing or maintaining the average level of intelligence of a population.
Everything seems to point towards the fact that the Cro-Magnon was more intelligent than the Inuit – on all levels.
Now I shall attempt to compare the levels of intelligence of today’s Inuit and Egyptian, as well as the levels of these two populations before the Industrial Revolution.
The first noteworthy point is that, from a genetic point of view, today’s Egyptians are in an overwhelming proportion the descendants of those who have built the astonishing ancient civilization.
According to research by Richard Lynn, the Inuit have an IQ of 91 and Egyptians have an IQ of 81. Regardless of the number of errors that may have occurred, one thing is certain: today’s Inuit is more intelligent that the Egyptian. But let us attempt to see what the situation was before the Industrial Revolution, which decreases genotypic intelligence and can sometimes increase the phenotypic one (the Flynn effect).
Egypt is a country which has only recently entered the Industrial Revolution, with a third of the population still engaged in agriculture; thus, the genotypic level of intelligence could not have been significantly affected, when compared to pre-industrial Egypt. In addition, as it is a country with a relatively small GDP and an unequal distribution of wealth, the Flynn effect is probably insignificant. We can therefore assume that the level of intelligence in pre-industrial Egypt was insignificantly higher than today.
As for Canadian Inuit, my opinion is that they form one of the populations whose genotypic intelligence has decreased the most as a consequence of the Industrial Revolution. Here are my arguments. If in 1867 the Inuit population in Canada was estimated at around 2000 members, the same population is today 25 times as numerous. The multiplication process has been even more significant, as we are not taking into consideration here the members who have crossbred. If we took them into account, then the 25-fold increase in the population would have occurred between 1867 and 1991. This is a growth rate which points towards an extraordinary weakening of natural selection, which could only lead to an important decrease in genotypic intelligence throughout the last 150 years or so. Aside from the population growth rate, contact with the infectious pathology of the White population, as well as their diet and alcohol may have played a significant part in the Inuit population’s decrease in intelligence. We may assume that, by living in a developed country – Canada – the Inuit have benefited from a significant increase in phenotypic intelligence, through the Flynn effect. But all statistics indicate that the Inuit do not enjoy the average Canadian standard of living; as such, the Flynn effect is perhaps lower for the Inuit than the Canadian average. Moreover, the Inuit have not ‚invested’ into modern comfort as much as the others; instead they have ‚chosen’ to invest into a higher growth rate for their population. In contrast, the Flynn effect is more apparent in populations with a low or even negative population growth rate. All these arguments point to the fact that Inuit before the Industrial Revolution must have had a significantly higher level of intelligence than today’s Inuit population; therefore higher than the modern and even pre-Industrial Egyptian population.
We should not exclude the possibility of the Inuit having been the most intelligent population in the world immediately after the Industrial Revolution, but also having been the great losers of this Revolution in terms of intelligence. Precisely because they have been the great winners in terms of population growth.
Let us summarise. The Cro-Magnon had a level of intelligence superior to that of the pre-Industrial Arctic hunter. And the latter had a higher level than the pre-Industrial Egyptian. Therefore, the Cro-Magnon was more intelligent than the current as well as the pre-Industrial Egyptian.
Let us now turn our attention towards the ancient Egyptian. If we accepted the fact that, until the Industrial Revolution, there was a sufficient pressure of selection to increase the average level of intelligence, we would have to accept two further facts. The first would be that the extraordinary ancient Egyptian civilization has been built by a population with an IQ averaging 70, meaning that half of it was what we would nowadays label ‚mentally retarded’ and only 2% of the population having the same intelligence as a modern-day English person. Under these conditions, could so many innovations have been possible? The second fact that we would have to accept is that the Cro-Magnon was more intelligent than the ancient Egyptian, meaning that there has been a decrease in intelligence even prior to the Industrial age.
It would be more plausible to imagine that the Cro-Magnon has been at the peak of all human intelligence ever recorded. Afterwards, once a threshold of innovation had been reached, this amounted to a ‚migration towards the South’, which decreased the pressure of selection and, consequently, the average human genotypic intelligence – a process I have called anthropolysis (taking into account that the entire anthropogenesis consists of an increase in intelligence).
From such a perspective, ancient Egyptians must have been more intelligent than today’s. This seems more likely, as ancient Egyptians were capable of innovating and inventing, whereas today’s Egyptians encounter difficulties in applying a model that already functions in other parts of the world.
We should accept, once and for all, the fact that, ever since the Palaeolithic, our evolution is less and less based on genetic endowment and rests increasingly on the extra-genetic heritage and on an ever growing population. From this numerous population, an ever smaller fraction contributes towards technological progress (i.e. towards the extra-genetic heritage) and an ever growing fraction relies on the support created by the Flynn effect – an effect which has probably occurred in other ages besides the Industrial one, whenever improvements in the maternal-foetal conditions have occurred.
The illusion that we are becoming more intelligent is simply an illusion. The delusion that anthropogenesis is still ongoing, alongside technological progress, is simply a delusion. We have been living the anthropolysis for tens of thousands of years.
P.S. I have stated above that, for the purposes of my reasoning, the Egyptians could have been replaced with the Greeks. The conclusions would have been the same. The Greeks currently have an IQ of around 92, almost equal to the Inuit’s’ (91) and significantly higher than the Egyptians’ (81). However, the Greeks have benefited from a stronger Flynn effect, as compared to the Egyptians, because Greece is a developed country (with a GDP per capita almost 6 times higher than Egypt’s) where repartition is of a socialist type. As such, the genotypic intelligence of the Greek population is perhaps not very different from the Egyptian genotypic intelligence.