Cortex Envy and IQ

Mark Dery at Cabinet:

For much of their history, intelligence tests have been rotten with the cultural and class biases of their makers, a diagnostic deck stacked against minorities, immigrants, and those at the bottom of the wage pyramid. Test designers have equated English-language fluency with intelligence, presumed a familiarity with upper-class pastimes such as tennis, and expected the examinee to provide the word “shrewd” as a synonym for “Jewish.” As late as the 1960 revision, the Stanford-Binet was presenting six-year-old children with crude cartoons of two women, one obviously Anglo-Saxon, the other a golliwog caricature of an African-American, with a broad nose and thick lips. The test accepted only one correct answer to the question, “Which is prettier?”12

Terman begrudgingly conceded that environmental factors might play some small part in IQ-test scores. For the most part, though, he was a thoroughgoing hereditarian.

more here.