Author Archives: harpend

Simple Mobility Models II

This is a sequel to the previous post exploring quantitative genetic models of income inequality motivated by the findings in Gregory Clark’s new book [1]. A simple quantitative genetic model must rely on the assumption of an underlying normal distribution … Continue reading

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Simple Mobility Models

Greg’s previous post reviewing Gregory Clark’s new book has generated some interesting discussion. Reviewers elsewhere and some of our customers have been surprised at the persistence of social class by surname and speculated that this implies genetic transmission of class. … Continue reading

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“I regret studying social anthropology”

The best part of running a blog is the quality of many of the people who show up.  A recent customer, “A.J. West”, has a blog of his own here that our readers will surely enjoy. Periodically on this blog Greg … Continue reading

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Inferring an AQ

Back in December Greg and I posted a draft of a paper on assortative mating, class, and caste. We asked for input and we got a lot, for which we are grateful. In that manuscript we described a thought experiment … Continue reading

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Is and Ought

I was chatting with a colleague the other day. She knows her science very well and she is no kind of moralistic posturer. Nevertheless she came up with the kind of knee jerk in the conversation with which most of … Continue reading

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Assortative Mating, Class, and Caste

I have an old blog post here about assortative mating and how it can mimic very strong selection. Greg and I are just finishing a manuscript on the issue, and we would be interested in any comments and criticisms you … Continue reading

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Raking a Table

Thinking about preparing for a course this Fall, I had a look at the current literature on assortative mating and found a pair of excellent papers on assortment by education [1,2]. Using census data they generated tables by decade from … Continue reading

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Race Potboiler from Ron Unz

A new blog post from Ron Unz examines the correlation across large US cities between the percentage of the population that identifies itself as black and rates of various violent crimes. The correlations are remarkably stable over time and run … Continue reading

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Bad Health at the Origins of Agriculture

  Bad Health and Agricultural Origins A few weeks ago on Jason Collins’s Evolving Economics blog there was a discussion of changes in human height assessed from skeletal remains. A well-known finding is that when humans started farming they became … Continue reading

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Clark/Frost Domestication

Gregory Clark, an economist at UC Davis, posted an essay several years ago titled Genetically Capitalist? in which he proposed that the stable social environment and institutions of Medieval England selected for a new kind of human who was less … Continue reading

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