The Chosen People

A Study of Jewish Intelligence and Achievement

Richard Lynn

Washington Summit Publishers
408 pages
ISBN: 978-1593680367
8.9 x 6.2 x 0.9 inches


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Einstein…Shylock…Rothschild…Trotsky…Jesus. The scientist and philosopher…the greedy moneylender and middle man…the impoverished immigrant…the elite of politics and finance…the prophet…the revolutionary. All of these have been faces of the Jewish people over the centuries. They have inspired admiration, envy, suspicion, and hatred and overflowed with world-changing personages. The historian Yuri Slezkine claimed that the 20th century was nothing less than the Jewish century, so indispensable were Jews to the creation of the modern world.
With The Chosen People, Richard Lynn undertakes a systematic inquiry into the general intelligence of Jews worldwide. Calling upon history as well as the latest advances in genetic analysis and evolutionary theory, Lynn demonstrates that in the past 250 years, high IQ has been the foundation of Jewish influence, success, and power. This study is integrated with concise narratives of the Jewish experience in various countries and regions, as well as a discussion of the cultural and genetic divisions within the Jewish ethos. The Chosen People will be valued by historians, evolutionary scientists, and anyone who wants to understand more fully this remarkable people.

About the Author

Richard Lynn graduated in Psychology and took his Ph.D. at the University of Cambridge. He has been lecturer in Psychology at the University of Exeter, professor of Psychology at the Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin, and professor and head of the department of Psychology at the University of Ulster. His main work has been on intelligence and personality. His books include Personality and National Character (1972), Dimensions of Personality (1980), Educational Achievement in Japan (1988), Dysgenics: Genetic Deterioration in Modern Populations (1996), Eugenics: A Reassessment (2001) and (jointly with Tatu Vanhanen) IQ and the Wealth of Nations (2002). Awards he has received include the Passingham Prize, Cambridge University Prize for the best Psychology student of the year, and the US Mensa Awards for Excellence 1985 and 1993 for work on intelligence.


Even as we attain greater and greater insights into the tangled web of nature and nurture, society stubbornly refuses to concede humankind s conformity as an animal species to the ongoing process of evolution. It instead imposes a mythological worldview almost entirely divorced from science: indeed, we see no contradiction in celebrating cultural diversity while simultaneously suppressing even a mention of genetic variance. Undaunted, Richard Lynn has with The Chosen People accomplished a yeoman s task in summing up work done thus far on Jewish intelligence. Given the disparate nature of the many studies that he cites, the relationship of intelligence to IQ is often problematic, and intelligence itself is but one piece in a complex mosaic, but this courageous and dispassionate book provides a platform for the study of a topic that is of considerable importance on the scientific plane, and for the sophisticated reader of even greater importance in the world of politics.

~John Glad, author of Jewish Eugenics

In The Chosen People, Professor Lynn has shown once again his talent for combining exhaustive research with daring scholarship. He is also an engaging writer, which is a quality in short supply among those who do detailed statistical work. Like his earlier books, this monograph should be read by anyone who is interested in the relation between innate intelligence and professional and social achievements. We ignore this historically significant subject at our peril and at the cost of future generations.

~Paul E. Gottfried, Elizabethtown College

Professor Richard Lynn s work addresses dispassionately and objectively the question of why Jews have been so remarkably successful as intellectuals and in professional and managerial life. Using a wealth of statistics and commentary from many different countries and societies, he demonstrates their success over and over again. Because of the odious uses to which the Nazis and their ilk put eugenically-based arguments, Jews and others have often been reluctant to engage in debating this question. Professor Lynn shows that this question ought to be addressed, and that it can be addressed objectively by philo-semites favourable to the Jews as well as by anti-Semites who are hostile to them.

~William D. Rubinstein, University of Aberystwyth


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